A top-quality baseball glove is one of the most crucial investments an athlete of any kind will make to improve their game.
Selecting the correct glove appropriate for your position and way can significantly impact your performance. While no one glove will help you become a better defensive player selecting one that fits well and is comfortable can help you feel more confident on the field and also help to make plays more smoothly and consistently.
It could be your first memory of baseball. A parent or someone you admire hands you the glove and then tells you it’s yours today. First, you’ll need to break it into. But what exactly does it mean for you to “break in” a baseball glove? What are you required to do? What do you know when you’ve broken it in? What should you do to break it?
Why Do Baseball Gloves Need to be Broken In?
One main factor that makes leather an attractive and flexible material is its endurance. However, unworn leather that has just been taken from the manufacturing line is usually as hard as a stone, and the type of leather that manufacturers of baseball gloves use isn’t any different.
You’re aware of the problem if you’ve tried catching the ball using an entirely new glove. It’s nearly impossible to squeeze shut and bounce out as if it’s thrown into an unfinished brick wall.
Although gloves made of synthetic materials are made to be ready for play right off the shelves, gloves made from genuine steerhide or cowhide have to be softened. Based on the material’s quality, the break-in period could last from a few days or weeks.
Breaking inside a baseball glove fast
One way to break inside a baseball glove fast
Find the appropriate equipment. A hot water bucket is required. A cup is also required, and a smooth surface on which you can work as well as a mallet in a glove or glove hammer that can assist in breaking it.
Use hot water. Pouring it on the glove (without submerging it, that would have the effect of soaking the glove). It’s merely a matter of trying to smooth the surface so that you can work on it.
Use your “hinge” of the glove. The padding beneath your thumb is crucial, as when this area isn’t pliable, putting the glove on the ball can be challenging. Then, you can use the mallet of your glove or hammer to smash down the area until it becomes less slack, making it easier for you to close and open.
Work the Rigid Parts
Many players aren’t sure what to do to break in a glove before actually using it. One of the most effective ways is to stretch restricted areas and use the leather to break them down. The tightest spots are located around the fingers and the wrist. It’s helpful to pull these portions of the glove toward and away from one another. This will help loosen the binding, and the leather allows the glove to squeeze and hold the ball. Moving and pulling the other fingers inside the glove is also beneficial. The amount you move the fingers can vary depending on the tightness you like the laces of your fingers. It is best to start with small amounts at the moment, then try the glove to test what happens, and then increase the amount when you need to.
Mallets made of wood are frequently employed to soften and shape the shape of a glove. The pocket that you pound helps shape a ball, which means the glove is more suitable for holding the ball. It is also possible to hit other glove areas to loosen your leather and prepare it for play. To get the best results, place a ball inside the pocket to determine its size and shape, then use a mallet made of wood to keep shaping and softening the leather.
Breaking in Catcher’s Mitts and First Base Gloves
The method you break in your catcher’s and first base gloves isn’t that different from the standard steps to break into the fielding glove. For first basemen and catchers, the most effective approach is to use the glove…a lot! Catching and running sessions in the bullpen will accomplish the task most efficiently, but it is not the fastest.
Here are some suggestions to remember:
- Use your glove a lot!
- Always keep a ball in your glove throughout the day.
- Only use conditioners and oils that the manufacturer has approved.
- Do not put on any gloves that contain foreign substances.
- Do not place your glove in the microwave or oven.
- Don’t leave your glove in the car.
CONDITIONING THE GLOVE THROUGHOUT THE SEASON
Be sure to keep your glove at home rather than inside the trunk of your vehicle or even in your garage for a longer-lasting life and to ensure that it is in good condition. Make sure to maintain the leather of your glove by regularly applying a tiny quantity of petroleum or conditioning cream throughout the season. Also, it’s a great practice to take care of your glove before you put it away to use in the off-season.
Bonus Pro Tip Use oils and conditioners only sparingly. In excess, taking care of your glove can cause harm since the oils could make your glove heavier and even reduce your leather’s life. Three or four treatments per year should suffice to ensure that your equipment is in good condition throughout the year.
There is no shortcut to properly breaking in a baseball or softball glove, but by following these techniques and completing as many catch sessions as possible, your new glove will be ready for the field within minutes.