When we purchase a new softball glove, we must break in our glove properly to fit our hand well.
As a young player, you may have had your glove, which was always the same. Then, once you got older and started playing on teams with other players, you might have switched to an adult-sized glove. Now that you have a nice set of equipment, it’s time for some maintenance. You’ll need to break it in before you go on the field for your first game. The best way to do this is by taking it through some drills and exercises.
What does it mean to break in our softball glove?
Well, when we buy a new glove, the leather is usually very stiff. As it is fresh and new, which is what we like, we want the leather to have some flexibility.
We want to be able to squeeze the fingers of the glove to close around the ball. The other important factor is to let the glove fit well to our hand. We want it to fit comfortably and shape around our hand, almost the way our favorite pair of shoes would do.
The first thing you’ll want to do is practice pitching or batting with your new gear. This will help loosen up the leather material to absorb energy better when hit by a ball or bat. You can also use your glove as a bat if you’re doing drills at home or in the backyard so that all of the leather has been stretched out by swinging it against something solid over and over again until it’s broken in enough for your hand to feel comfortable inside of it without any discomfort whatsoever.
Once you’ve gotten used to using your glove without any problems while practicing, it’s time to play real games with it!
Steps to breaking in softball gloves
There are many ways to accelerate the break-in time of softball gloves.
Soften the leather
The first step we want to take when breaking into our glove is to soften or condition the leather. There are a lot of different oils and conditioners that one can use to help ease the leather.
It is recommended more of a conditioner or a foam. Sometimes oils can be heavy and make the glove heavier and can be a pain for other teammates when the oil rubs off on the ball if one is playing softball. A conditioner will help to soften the leather, which will help to create a little bit of flexibility.
Loosen up the seams
The other important thing is that we help to loosen up the seams where the stitches are. They are wound very tightly in the glove, which is very good; however, it is challenging for us to squeeze the glove.
Mostly, the tightest stitching is down in the palm area of the glove, which is the part that helps us and allows us to squeeze around the ball.
Shaping the glove is a crucial step because this is where the pocket is formed. A pocket is where the ball is caught most of the time. We want to have a good area for the ball to fit.
Anytime when we’re not wearing our gloves, we can put a ball in the pocket, and if we have a string or some rubber band, we can place it around it to keep it in position at all times, as it is crucial to maintain its shape and its form.
General pointers to break in softball gloves faster
- Wearing the gloves a lot, squeezing them a lot, and working the leather simply with one’s hand can help to break it in. The oils from our hands alone can help.
- Another good way to do it is just to play catch. Play catch a lot, whether playing it with someone or with yourself.
- Some other techniques we can use after we have conditioned our glove are a bat or a rubber mallet to simply pound on the glove area that we want to use as the pocket.
- There are a lot of different tricks and ways to do it but ultimately, the best way to break in is to give it some good, tender, loving care.
Breaking in a softball glove can be the hardest part of the play. There are many ways to break in your new glove, but most will take at least a week or two.
The best way to break in a new glove is to use it as much as possible. This means playing every day and using it during practice each day. It would help if you also played games after practice.