How to Measure and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves

Table of contents:

How to Measure and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves
How to Measure and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves

One of the most important elements of a football goalkeeper's clothing is certainly a good pair of gloves, which not only protects the hands from injuries, but also improves the grip on the ball during a save. For goalkeeper gloves to prove effective on the pitch, they must fit well and be properly maintained. If you know how to buy the right gloves and keep them in top shape, then you can play to the best of your ability.


Part 1 of 2: Buying the Right Gloves

Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 1
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 1

Step 1. Know the standard sizes for goalkeeper gloves

In order to make the most of their potential during a match, they must fit perfectly on the hands. If they are the wrong size, then not only will they interfere with your performance, but they will be short-lived.

  • Measure your hands to buy the perfect gloves; the following directions are a general guide for standard sizes of goalkeeper gloves for children and adults.
  • Junior players: kids with small hands and who are between 7 and 9 years old should usually choose size "S" gloves. Boys between 10 and 12, in general, have larger hands and benefit from a size "M" or "L".
  • Adult players: size "S" is suitable for adults with small hands or children with rather large hands; the “M” size is for people with medium-sized hands, while the “L” size is suitable for those with large hands. There are also sizes "XL" and "XXL" for players with very large hands or who need a particular fit.
  • Go to a sporting goods store to try on different models and get an idea of the size you need.
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 2
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 2

Step 2. Measure your hands to purchase the perfect gloves

If you want a pair of gloves that will allow you to play your best, then measure both hands, as they are not identical to each other. This way you will be sure that the gloves won't break quickly.

  • To know the right size, measure the circumference of the palm at the widest point excluding the thumb. For some models with the Anglo-Saxon sizing system, it will be necessary to change this value from centimeters to inches (1 cm = 0.4 inches) and then add 1 inch to the result to get the glove size you need. At this point you can visit the website of different glove manufacturers and check the corresponding size based on the circumference of your hand.
  • Each person has one hand larger than the other. Measure them both and order the gloves according to the size of the largest hand.
  • Buying the correct size gloves is not an exact science, because every athlete's hands are different. Very often there are differences in the various features and sizes of the models based on the manufacturer and the quality level.
  • Goalkeeper gloves should have a slightly larger fit than the size of the hand. However, between the fingertips and the end of the gloves there should not be a space of less than 6 mm, but the ideal should be about 12 mm. If the gloves are much larger (for example 2 cm or more between the fingers and the tips of the gloves), then they will interfere with your athletic performance.
  • For example, if the glove does not fit well on the fingers, then the latex material wears very quickly, resulting in premature cracking and tearing at the seams.
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 3
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 3

Step 3. Learn how goalkeeper gloves are made

This important piece of sports equipment consists of two main parts, the palm and the back, which are often made of different materials. Knowing what materials are used and what solutions you have will help you make the right choice for your needs.

Gloves should be made with excellent workmanship and the best materials based on the surface of the playing field, the climatic conditions you live in and the budget you have available. For example, all palms are made of latex, but only the best gloves also have their backs built with this material; this is a feature you should take into consideration if you often play in goal. The less expensive models have only a layer of foam on the back and generally offer good protection

Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 4
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 4

Step 4. Know the various "cuts" of gloves

Not only are the gloves made of various materials, but the workmanship and cut also change based on how the palm is made. Evaluate the most suitable for you and the size of your hand.

  • Flat cut gloves, also known as traditional, have a single layer of foam rubber, a soft fit, external seams and a very bulky appearance.
  • The "roll" or "gunn" models are also called "rolled-finger" gloves because the seams are on the back of the fingers, giving a "rolled" look. These are models that adhere well to the hand and have a large contact surface with the ball.
  • The “negative” gloves have internal seams. They offer a very snug fit and are perfect for women or male goalkeepers who have particularly small hands.
  • Finally, there are hybrid models that incorporate different types of invoices. Most of the time it is a mix between the "rolled" or "gunn" gloves and the "negative" or "traditional" cut.
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 5
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 5

Step 5. Choose the model with the right fit on the palm

The most important part of the gloves for a goalkeeper is the palm, because it allows you to catch the ball. Generally speaking, the more expensive models offer a better grip, while the cheaper ones have a lower resistance. You need to consider both of these factors and weigh them against your needs.

  • Cheap gloves are a good solution for kids or novice players. These gloves demonstrate to players that technique is required to parry shots on goal, not the display of special clothing.
  • Soft palm models offer better grip, while hard palm models last longer. The latter contain a higher percentage of rubber in relation to latex, and are perfect for five-a-side football.
  • The palm area can have different thicknesses, on average 3-4 mm. The thinner materials allow you more sensitivity with the ball, but if your goal is perfect protection, then consider models with a thicker palm.
  • Also take into account the surface of the playing field when choosing grip for gloves. Artificial turf courts can wear out the latex very quickly, and in this case it is best to choose a model with a thick palm to balance this effect. Most manufacturers offer gloves specifically designed to withstand rain, a dry climate or the closed environment of a sports hall.
  • It is essential to know the conditions for which the gloves are designed: dry, wet, hard ground or field of natural surfaces. This is very important information for maintenance. For example, soft and bulky gloves with latex palm and professionally made, which are considered suitable for “all climates” or “dry” ones, must be hydrated for the game. Gloves used in humid climates must be wet before the game and preferably also between the first and second half.
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 6
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 6

Step 6. Also consider the life span of the gloves

Since you will be playing with them every game, consider how long they can last before buying them. You can consider having a pair for training and one for the game, so they will last longer.

  • A good pair of gloves will usually last for 12-14 games, depending on how much they are stressed and the maintenance you perform. After this number of uses, it's worth keeping them for workouts only.
  • The decision to buy two pairs (one for the competition and the other for training) also depends on your budget.
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 7
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 7

Step 7. Buy gloves

Once you have learned everything there is to know about the various types of goalkeeper gloves available, you are ready to move on to purchase. You can choose from several retailers, from sporting goods stores to specialized football stores.

  • If you are not a professional and you are not looking for the top of the range, then you have many models to choose from. You can find them in sports stores, large sports equipment centers and even online.
  • If, on the other hand, you are an experienced and professional goalkeeper, then you must opt for the high-quality models, available in specialized football stores, both online and physical.

Part 2 of 2: Taking Care of the Gloves

Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 8
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 8

Step 1. Remember that goalkeeper gloves have a rather short shelf life

Latex starts to deteriorate as soon as you start using it, and the more often you play, the quicker the gloves wear. However, with proper care, you can slow down the process and how often you need to change them.

Models with a soft and voluminous palm, such as the professional ones, offer exceptional grip and adherence, at the expense of resistance. Very thick gloves show signs of wear from the first use, and it is not uncommon to notice the material flaking

Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 9
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 9

Step 2. Use training gloves

Make sure the "match" ones are always in perfect condition by using a second pair for training. You can use an old pair that is no longer suitable for official meetings, or you can buy an inexpensive model that will also offer you the advantage of forcing yourself to improve your technique.

  • Buy a relatively inexpensive pair that offers less grip at the palm level, but good resistance over time. In this way you will not only save the “match” pair from wear, but you will refine your technique.
  • You can turn an old match pair into a training pair once you've bought your new gloves. It is very important to have perfect gloves for competitions and another one for preparation.
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 10
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 10

Step 3. Take care of your gloves during the game

At this time they suffer maximum wear, so it is important to perform good maintenance even during the race. This is especially important for models suitable for "all climates" and "humid climates".

  • Several areas of the football field may be muddy or show bare earth, depending on the weather. If you warm up in these areas, then you reduce the effectiveness of the gloves. For this reason, prepare yourself somewhere less dirty and earthy. In the warm-up phase you can also rely on training gloves.
  • Softer latex gloves should be moistened with water, as the palms tend to dry out; however, models with very soft palms can become slippery if they are too wet. Try to find the right compromise so you won't be hindered in your efforts to secure the door.
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 11
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 11

Step 4. Clean them

The use of gloves during the game and practice obviously leaves a layer of grime, no matter how careful you were during the game. Soil and sweat ruin the latex and interfere with athletic performance. If you clean your gloves after each use, you will extend their life.

  • Clean each glove separately and gently.
  • Put on a glove and put it under warm running water. Use a mild cleaner or goalkeeper-specific soap and wipe away dirt, grime and sweat.
  • Rinse carefully until the water runs clean. "Squeeze" the gloves to remove excess water, but do not squeeze them as you could tear the seams.
  • Hang them to air dry without the help of any tool that can speed up the process (such as a hairdryer or the sun, which could dry the material and deteriorate it even more quickly).
  • You can roll up newspaper sheets and insert them into your fingers to hold their shape and speed up the drying process.
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 12
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 12

Step 5. Store them properly

After playing a game or washing your gloves, you need to put them away the right way. Most of the models are sold with the appropriate case.

  • Put them in a cool and reasonably humid place. Avoid very humid places, as they could encourage mold growth and bacterial growth - both of which will ruin the gloves.
  • Don't put them in your training bag and forget them until the next game. Clean them if necessary and put them back in their case. If they are particularly drenched in sweat, allow them to air dry before placing them in their bag.
  • When storing them, do not put your palms in contact with each other, as they may stick and tear when you separate them.
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 13
Size and Take Care of Goalkeeper Gloves Step 13

Step 6. Make sure they don't stink

Goalkeeper gloves are a "closed environment", in direct contact with sweat and skin bacteria, all factors that favor the formation of bad odors. If you wash them and store them properly, you will prevent the bacteria and molds responsible for this unpleasant situation from proliferating.

  • Remember to clean your gloves with a disinfectant to eliminate sweat, bacteria and prevent them from stinking.
  • Leave them in the air to prevent the development of mold and a colony of bacteria which, in turn, would generate bad smells. This means that you have to wait for them to dry completely after each batch and cleaning session.