Helping Your Child with Layering During Extreme Weather
Jun 26, 2023
If you’re a parent to a young soccer player, it’s up to you to ensure they’re prepared to play in any condition, from attitude to soccer protective gear. This includes layering, an often overlooked aspect. Use this blog to get the best insight into layering and the available products in Storelli’s youth section that make being prepared simple.
Layering youth soccer equipment in hot conditions
Whether the heat is coming from the sun or the humidity, being poorly dressed can lead to sunburn, heat exhaustion, heat stroke, and overuse. The body functions within a specific heat range and going too far over that range starts to affect soccer players’ physical health.
At the very least, youth soccer players will leave the field with an irritating sunburn. At its worst, they could be seriously sick for a few days, not only missing more practice and games, but potentially losing their drive to get back out on the field.
With children, parents are responsible for ensuring they’re properly prepared for hot weather, which means teaching them how to be prepared on their own and the risks they could face, and setting them up with the necessary equipment so safety becomes easier to manage.
How to layer in hot conditions
Layering in hot weather doesn’t look the same as layering in cold weather. You’d think no layers would be better if it’s hot. This isn’t necessarily the case. In hot weather, there are two main layers to think about: a sweat-wicking layer and a reflective shell layer
The sweat-wicking layer is what youth players should wear under their uniforms. Playing soccer in the heat will lead to more sweat, which, if it stays on the skin, acts as a barrier containing heat, increasing the player’s body temperature. It also leads to chafing and irritation during a game.
One of the many benefits of wearing a Storelli sweat-wicking shirt is that it provides protection as well as padding in areas most likely to need impact absorption. The shell layer is whatever is on the outside, and in hot conditions that would be the soccer jersey. There’s no need for any additional layers since the base layer combines sweat-wicking material with protective padding.
The shell layer should be reflective of the sun’s heat. This means wearing a bright color like white or light blue. Don’t wear dark colors like black or purple because they absorb the light and retain more heat. With a protective sweat-wicking layer underneath a reflective layer, most of the heat and sun rays a player is subject to will be repelled from the body to keep their temperature moderate during a game.
These tips might be self-explanatory for adults, but youth players can always benefit from the reminder to:
- Stay hydrated with cool water and electrolytes
- Eat well before and after the game to retain vitamins and proteins
- Use the shade when possible
- Take frequent breaks
- Get good rest between games and practices
- Always have a proper cooldown to manage body temperature
Layering youth soccer equipment in cold conditions
On the other end of the thermometer, extreme cold temperatures can lead to frostbite, hypothermia, and illness. As with extreme heat, body temperature should remain within a certain range. In the cold, it can also affect how the muscles and joints move and increase the risk of injury, pulls, and strains.
If the body is too cold, youth players will be uncomfortable, discouraged, and at risk of more injuries. This is all avoidable, however, with thoughtful layering that parents can ensure their children are using.
How to layer in cold conditions
In the cold, it’s easy to add more layers without overheating the player. However, choosing the right materials and products can lower the number of layers without sacrificing body heat. In cold weather, players should wear at least three layers: a sweat-wicking layer; an insulating layer; and an outer shell layer.
As with hot conditions, players should start their base layer with a sweat-wicking product, which is available in bottoms and tops at Storelli as compression clothing. For example, wear the Storelli ExoShield Goalie ¾ soccer pants as a base layer for its sweat-wicking, protective, and compression capabilities. Sweat-wicking isn’t just for heat. If sweat stays on the body in the cold, it can cool and lower body heat quickly. It can even freeze on the skin.
As always, the protective aspect is important for the game, but in the cold, compression is just as important. Compression products will provide needed support to the muscles and joints to perform optimally when they might not be as warmed up as they usually are. Compression helps with blood flow and dynamic movements so players can avoid strains or overuse.
Next, the insulating layer is the space to retain body heat without sweat. A good option is the Training Hoodie which can be worn over a sweat-wicking layer and under a soccer jersey when necessary. This hoodie features a high neck to keep the player warm and the right materials (nylon, poly, and spandex) to create warmth without bulk.
The outer layer should act as a shell that at once retains heat and blocks the cold from entering, whether that’s through snow, wind, or rain. This could be a lightweight, flexible raincoat with Gore-Tex or wind and water resistance materials.
Also, consider the extremities of the body. The feet and hands will often get colder than the body’s core. Bring backup socks or layer up on socks if possible. Wear soccer gloves (they’re not just for goalies) to keep the hands warm and help with grip for throw-ins. Leave extra layers on the bench if needed to keep body temperature up on beaks.
These other tips will help youth players stay warm and safe in cold weather. Parents, remind them to:
- Use toe warmers in cleats
- Put Vaseline on exposed skin
- Stay hydrated
- Eat well
- Warm up thoroughly
- Keep moving when on the bench
All conditions: you need youth soccer headgear
One of the most important things to remember is that concussions can happen in any weather. Extreme heat can cause sloppy playing and lead to a dangerous head collision. Extreme cold could cause a player to slip on the pitch and bang their head. No matter the weather, always ensure the use of youth soccer head protection.
The most protective five-star ASTM-certified youth soccer headgear, the ExoShield Head Guard provides the last piece of protection youth players need in extreme conditions. Not only does it help with concussion prevention, but it also adds a layer of warmth around the head in cold weather.
You can find anything you need at Storelli when it comes to layers, training equipment, youth soccer head protection, and protective gear. Our goal is to provide players with the safety, security, and support they need to play soccer for as long as possible. We love the sport too! Shop youth soccer equipment here and leave a review.