Learn about Softball Gloves
Discover leading softball glove designs from online softball gear experts. Learn about softball glove sizing, leather and synthetic leather constructions, breaking in and maintenance, major brands and more from online specialists. Get softball glove specifications, sizing assistance, low online prices and speedy order fulfillment.
Getting Your Performance Softball Glove
Maximize your training investment in time and core fielding skills by getting softball gloves designed for deep pocket and quick release action. In the 170 years plus of baseball and softball game history, mitt designs moved from primitive barnyard style gloves in the 1870's to the modern high tech softball gloves, exploiting any number of materials technologies to create light weight, great fit and reliable performance. Read the following tips on modern softball glove designs.
- Know Your Hand Size. Since all softball gloves are out-sized, due to the larger softball diameters beginning at 10 inches and in cases moving to 16 inches, you'll be looking at an overall larger piece of softball equipment. In terms of getting the right fit, so that you can retain full control over your glove, you need to be able to extend your fingers deep into the finger channels, without hitting any padding obstruction. At the same time, your hand should be snug but not tight across the palm area of your softball glove.
- Importance Of Correct Levels Of Padding. You want to get protection from hard hit balls and bruising, yet you need maximum flex and control over your softball glove. If you go for too much padding then your softball glove will not ‘feel' the ball, leaving you with a clumsy piece of gear that will result in errors and diminished confidence. Pick a softball glove with maximum flexibility and ease of opening and closing. Better designed softball gloves will have a layer of high compression padding throughout the pocket area, as well as padding that extends part way up the thumb and fingers, without moving past the second digit which would make for too stiff action. You should have enough ‘wiggle room' within your softball glove to permit the insertion of a thin cushioning padding piece, particularly important in the training and pre-season period where ball player's hands are ‘soft', yet need to be protected from bruising.
- Different Glove For Field Player Positions. You can select from infielder softball gloves at around 12 inches overall length to first base gloves bearing lengths of over 14 inches. Softball gloves vary enormously by player position, More length and more material equals more weight on the hand. The smaller infielders softball glove carries a shallow ‘pocket' which permits the player to easily scoop out the ball and make a rapid throw to first or complete a double-play action with quickness and efficiency. Meanwhile, outfielders' softball gloves are deep pocket designed, with longer finger lengths than an infielder's glove, in order to capture-and-hold long balls. The most radical departure of on-field glove designs include the extra long first baseman's softball glove and the catchers mitt, both which are significantly padded, yet give you remarkable ‘touch' and flexibility.
- Key Design Features To Look For. Unless you're looking for a custom glove or you need the somewhat smaller women's softball glove models, you'll be looking at either all leather or synthetic leather construction. For playing comfort, make sure that no seams run down the face of a glove finger, nor seams that pinch in as these anomalies will eventually create minor abrasion and discomfort. A smart design option for many fast pitch softball gloves is the combining of a light synthetic mesh on the back side for ventilation, with a front side all leather construction. Look also for a snug, not overly fit of your softball glove along your hand and wrist, usually best accommodated with a cinch up Velcro strap.
Great Brands To Look For . The national market leader brands are your best bet. Many online sports equipment specialists carry a wide selection of Nokona softball gloves, along with Mizuno, Nike and Rawlings gloves.
- Breaking In Your New Softball Glove. Old timers, and a tradition of baseball play, have proven a time tested technique for ‘developing a pocket' and breaking in your new softball glove correctly. Get your standard game ball, say a 12 inch fast pitch softball , place it deep within your new glove, and then tie a string around the outside of your glove, leaving it tied for 2 to 3 days. Once untied, your softball glove will ‘hold' it's shape, a perfect ball catching pocket. For general maintenance of softball gloves, add Vaseline or soap saddle in light dabs, rubbing in deeply in order to provide protection and long life.