Hockey Equipment Care
How to care for your hockey equipment
Hockey equipment isn't cheap, so here are a few tips to make your skates, pads, and sticks last longer.
The number one enemy against your hockey equipment is water, which can make your equipment moldy or misshaped if it isn't well-ventilated and dried out after use.
Besides ensuring that your hockey helmets are dried out after practices and games, also check your helmet regularly for cracks, chips, or missing pieces. A damaged helmet is never as helpful when protecting your head, so it's time to buy a new helmet when the old one is broken. The foam inside your helmet should not be cut or modified and should feel spongy-soft, not hard. Keep in mind that helmets should be replaced every five years.
When you hang up your hockey gloves to dry, avoid open heat sources, which could shrink the inside or alter the shape of the outside. Check your gloves for rips or tears to either repair them or replace them. Make sure that the laces are always tied; never remove them since they prevent tearing of the side gussets.
Remove the interior liners of the skate and open the boot wide to air dry your skates after every game and practice. Dry the skate blades so they don't rust, and keep the skates away from open heat sources, which can weaken the skates.
Before using your hockey skates again, check them for bent blades, loose rivets, or any cracked parts which could compromise the quality of your skate. Skates can be repaired for less cost than buying a new pair, so repair any loose or broken parts before using them again. Generally, a pair of well-used hockey skates should last about one season.
Taking care of your hockey stick is easy—wipe it dry and then allow it to air dry before your next game or practice. Keeping a dry towel stashed in your hockey equipment bag makes it easy to wipe your stick, skate blades, and other hard equipment dry right away after using them.