Today, we will address an area that I know many of you have difficulty with. I, too, struggle in this area, and I’m always looking for better ways I can improve. I am referring to the topic of sports gear and how to organize it.
How to organize sports gear is something most of us have to do either for ourselves or for our kids. Because there are so many shapes and varieties of sports gear, it can be difficult to figure out how best to store it.
Let’s look at the first step in how to organize sports gear. If you know me well or have been reading my blog for any length of time, you know I love to declutter first. So, that’s what we’ll do before we can decide how to organize just about anything. Sports gear is no exception.
Take every item you have and lay it out by category- bats, helmets, knee pads, balls, gloves, hockey sticks, and so on. Now, take care to decide if the item no longer fits, is no longer used, or has been worn beyond repair.
I know it is difficult to part with these items because they usually cost a small fortune. However, you can try to resell your gently used items to recoup some of the cost. Or, if you wish to keep them, look at Pinterest for some great ideas on how you can use sports gear as room decor’.
A word of caution here: Decluttering should involve actually parting with the unwanted items. Do Not be tempted to store these elsewhere with the intention to sell them or donate them eventually, because unfortunately, “eventually” often never comes. Now, you’ve just “moved” them to delay your decision making.
If this is especially difficult for you, recruit some help here from an honest friend or family member. Set yourself a deadline of when you HAVE TO be rid of the items. For example, if you decide to resell the gently used sports gear, try to make yourself a “sell by date,” and then donate anything that doesn’t sell by then.
Also, consider selling these items around the time that that particular sports seasons starts. People will be searching for discounted gear at the start of a new sports season.
Now that you have decluttered, let’s determine how to best store what remains. My kids play ice hockey. Because we haul all of that gear to and from practice several times a week, we decided it best to store the items in their hockey gear bag during hockey season.
This only works if you clean and completely dry the gear before you store it. Storing wet or dirty gear can be very odor causing. Once the hockey season is over, I always make sure everything gets washed and air dried before I store it away. You can check out my other blog post about how to clean sports gear if you need some tips.
How to Organize Sports Balls:
There are a few options here to help you organize basketballs, footballs, and the like. You can use a tall, plastic vertical laundry hamper. I like to use the ones that have holes throughout, so air can flow through easily. You can seen one in the photo below.
Another option is a shelf with a bumper on the edge. You can create a bumper to keep the balls from rolling off by using a small dowel rod glued onto your shelf surface. Also, you can create a “stretchy” bumper to contain the balls by stretching bungee cords around the shelf itself.
Another option is to use large laundry mesh bags. You can store different balls in different bags according to their type. Again, I like the mesh fabric because it allows the gear to dry out to avoid causing odor. You can hang these bags on hooks in your garage or wherever you need to store them.
How to Organize Bats and Hockey Sticks:
Bat and hockey sticks also lend themselves to being easily stored in a tall laundry hamper. Look for one that is made of sturdy plastic so it doesn’t easily tip over and spill. Another way to organize bats and hockey sticks is by mounting them on the wall on a rack with hooks. You may have to place them sideways and store them horizontally.
You can also use a utility type rack that is normally used to store brooms and mops. Another fun idea for storing bats and hockey sticks is to use pipes like the ones in the photo below. Look for PVC plumbing pipes in your hardware store and use a portion of the pipe. Mount this to the wall and slide the bat or stick through. Avoid the bent/elbow variety. Choose a straight piece that is large enough to hold your gear.
How to Organize Helmets:
Helmets are odd shaped items that need special, unique storage. Hooks work well for storing helmets. Just make sure the hook is well mounted and won’t easily come down because of the weight of the helmet. You can also create a rope hanging rack like the one seen in the photo below.
How to Organize Sports Pads:
Hockey lends itself to quite a large amount of sports pads. Storing these can be tricky because we have so many of them in so many sizes, shapes, and varieties. We store all of our gear in the coordinating bag. Remember, these, too, must be kept dry to avoid odors. Another way to store pads is in a large mesh laundry bag like the ones mentioned already for storing balls. You can buy these in the laundry department in most department stores.
How to Organize Footwear:
Many sports require special footwear. A shoe rack is a great idea for storing this type of gear. However, skates have a unique issue here, in that the standard show rack doesn’t allow for the blades. A good option for storing skates is to tie the laces together and hang them up on a hook.
For soccer cleats and other types of cleats, store them in a durable shoe rack that doesn’t damage or dull the cleats. If you are concerned about the cleats scratching the shoe rack, line the show rack with a durable shelf liner. Choose a dry location where the shoes can air dry after use to help eliminate odors. You can also stuff rolled newspaper inside the shoes to absorb moisture and odor.
I hope you have found this information beneficial on how to better organize sports gear. If you enjoy reading this type of material, subscribe to my blog where you can find more tips and tricks on cleaning and organizing everything in your home.
Need to deep clean? I have lists for you to guide you along.
My How to Deep Clean Your Kitchen list can be found here.
My How to Deep Clean Your Bathroom list can be found here.
My How to Deep Clean Your Kids’ Rooms list can be found here.
My How to Deep Clean Your Living Room list can be found here.
My How to Deep Clean Your Bedroom list can be found here.
Also, to keep up the general housework, you may need to create a daily housekeeping schedule that suits your specific needs. To do so, I have created a helpful series you can read here.
Need to Declutter Every room? I have declutter checklists for every room and every space in your home to guide you along below.
How to Declutter the Guest Room or Your Kid’s Room checklist can be found here.
How to Declutter Your Laundry Room and Patio checklist can be found here.
How to Declutter Your Coat Closet/Hall Closet/Linen Closet checklist can be found here.
How to Declutter Your Home Office checklist can be found here.
How to Declutter Your Attic checklist can be found here.
How to Declutter Your Garage checklist can be found here.
How to Declutter Your Living Room checklist can be found here.
How to Declutter Your Kitchen Checklist can be found here.
How to Declutter Your Entry/Foyer/Mudroom checklist can be found here.
How to Declutter Your Clothing checklist can be found here.
How to Declutter Your Bedroom checklist can be found here.
How to Declutter Your Bathroom checklist can be found here.
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The Year Long Thorough Declutter Series is designed to help you declutter every room and every space in your home. We declutter 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week. It includes daily tasks, so you can track your progress. It also includes detailed lists to declutter each room and each space within your home. Subscribe below to receive your daily task. To subscribe, leave a comment below.