Youth: How Often Should You Swap Your Goalie Gloves?

Jan 29, 2021

*This article is part of an educational series for soccer parents and players new to soccer*

Any parent of a young goalkeeper knows that replacing goalie gloves feels like an almost constant event. Even if you’ve got a new pair you love, they won’t last forever. In this post, we’ll look at some of the things that contribute to the wear and tear of goalie gloves, different types of goalie gloves and how often you should swap out your gloves. 

Types of Gloves

Training Gloves Vs. Match Gloves

Are all goalkeeper gloves the same? The answer is no. You may be surprised to learn that there is a type of goalie glove for every style of play, level of play and condition. But how do you know the difference? We’ll walk you through the different types. 

Training Gloves - Training or practice gloves are designed for beginner players and practice sessions for professional players. These gloves have more protection for fingers and hands and less grip on the palms because the latex is more durable. These tend to last much longer than match gloves.

Gloves like the Gladiator Challenger 2 Glove provide excellent finger protection and high-performance grip for practices. These gloves are some of the best youth soccer goalie gloves and are perfect for beginner players looking for performance, protection and durability.

Match Gloves - These gloves are made for adult players and competitive younger players. The latex is high quality, which gives excellent grip during games and finger guards to protect the goalkeeper’s fingers. The latex can also be more delicate than training gloves and requires a lot of care and maintenance.

The Gladiator Pro 2 Gloves are our best selling professional goalie gloves. They are heavy duty gloves, with German latex for professional quality grip during matches.

How Do You Know it is Time to Replace Your Gloves?

The answer to this question depends on your personal preference and your level of play. It is essential to understand that latex begins to deteriorate the second you start to use it, and your gloves will wear out faster the more you play or practice.  Dirt, sweat and bacteria can also build up over time and cause wear.

Even the most expensive and high-quality gloves will need replacing eventually. Dirt, sweat and bacteria wear down the latex and reduce its effectiveness over time.  If your latex is crumbling or has lost its grip even after a good cleaning, it’s time to replace your gloves.

For most players, and especially younger soccer players, having a good pair of soccer goalie gloves for training and a set of gloves for matches should see you through most of the season. It also depends on the weather conditions, your level of play and how rough the game is. It’s also great practice to have a clean quality pair of gloves saved only for games.

Training gloves do not have the same grip as match gloves, but they are built to withstand hours of practice without breaking down. They can also be helpful for younger players who need more finger protection.

Other Goalie Glove Options

Is there a difference between Men’s goalie gloves and Women’s Goalie Gloves? Essentially the gloves do the same thing and include similar features. More options are available in men’s goalkeeper gloves than women’s, but the real difference is in the sizing and fit.  

Women’s gloves tend to fit smaller and have thinner and longer fingers, which can be a better fit for some women. 

Soccer Goalie Glove Care and Maintenance

To help your gloves last as long as possible, you need to take care of them and wash them regularly. Here are some tips for keeping your gloves in optimal condition: 

  • Be sure to wash new gloves and let them dry before you use them for the first time. Washing new gloves before use removes some of the factory finish on the latex and will improve their grip.
  • Be sure to clean your gloves and let them dry between matches to maintain their shape and protect the fabric. Don’t let them completely dry out or dry them in the sun, or it could cause the latex to crack. If they dry out, give them a quick dose of water before a game to moisturize the latex and prevent cracking.
  • Never store gloves with the palms together. The latex can stick together and get damaged when you pull them apart.
  • In the offseason, be sure to store gloves in a cool area with good air circulation. A goalie bag is the best way to store and protect your gloves.
  • Have one pair of training gloves for practice sessions and one pair for games and alternate between them to help your more expensive gloves last longer. 

Goalkeeping gloves are a goalie’s most essential piece of protective equipment. If you are looking for soccer goalie gloves to protect your hands and fingers while giving you the best grip possible, see our line of goalie gloves today. We have styles to fit every level of play, size and style preferences for training and elite matches. Let us get you equipped so you can get out there and be unstoppable!

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