Depending on the type of hockey you play, equipment can range from shin guards and cotton clothes to full protective gear. Regardless, it’ll need washing regularly to keep it fresh.
Considering how bulky some hockey equipment can be, it’s fair to wonder how you should clean it best. Read on to find out.
Can You Put Hockey Equipment in the Washing Machine?
Theoretically, you can machine wash all hockey equipment apart from the stick, helmet and skates/shoes.
However, watch out for materials such as latex and leather, as these aren’t washing machine friendly. You should be fine to wash pads and guards, provided your machine is large enough.
Bear in mind though that the agitating motion of a washing machine doesn’t mix well with rigid materials. This includes solid pads such as shoulder pads and most shin guards.
Anything that’s mostly fabric or has enough flex will be fine for the washing machine. However, if you’re unsure, wash it by hand.
Anything that can be machine washed can be put on a normal cycle: 30 or 40 degrees Celsius and a standard spin.
Ensure you air dry your equipment, as using a tumble dryer can lead to shrinkage.
Can You Put Hockey Pads in the Wash?
For harder items, including your helmet and skates or shoes, you should wash them by hand.
Alternatively, you could use a basin of warm water and baby shampoo. Be sure to remove any fabric pads first and wash these separately.
The easiest way to clean larger equipment, such as shoulder pads, is in a bathtub or shower. Half-fill the bath with lukewarm water and 50-100 ml of laundry detergent.
Simply soak your equipment for around 30 minutes and scrub any stains with a washing-up sponge. Rinse in clean water and hang somewhere to dry.
If you believe your hockey equipment contains glued layers – for example, in goalie pads – avoid submerging it in water. You’ll have to spot-clean marks with disinfectant spray and a clean cloth.
Goalie pads should have a sweat-absorbing layer closest to your skin. In theory, you should be able to remove this and wash it separately.
The same is true for helmets and skates. These interior pads should be fine to go in the washing machine.
Check the care instructions if you still have them, and wash by hand if you’re unsure.
How Often Should You Wash Hockey Gear?
Hockey clothes should be cleaned after each use, while sweat pads should be cleaned every 2-3 uses.
Hard pads and other equipment should be cleaned around once a month depending on how often you use it.
Hockey equipment can be time-consuming to clean, but it’s definitely a necessary job.
Luckily, a lot of it can be thrown in the washing machine, meaning you don’t have loads to wash by hand.
Whichever option you choose, make sure you do it regularly to keep your gear looking its best.
Jacob is a freelance writer based in Wales, where he lives with his partner and two dogs. All his work is fuelled by extensive research and buckets of coffee.