How Long Do Goalkeeper Gloves Last?
By Brandon Gilliam
This is the answer that every parent wants to know, How long will my goalkeeper gloves last? The answer is not that easy, and so we will break it down below.
First and most important you need to know that goalkeeper gloves are not designed to last forever. The latex foam that is on the palm is created for two purposes. One, as shock absorption. To get this we need a certain level of thickness. If you go too thin there won't be any padding, and if you go too thick the material will just rip off in junks. Most good gloves are between a 3mm and 4mm thickness giving enough cushion but not ripping to pieces. The second reason is for stickiness. The stickier your gloves the less life you will get out of them. There are around 5 different types of latex palms such as gigi, and pure contact foam and each one has different properties to them. One has stickier but less durable and another is more durable but less stick.
Now we know a bit more about the glove itself we will talk about a 3mm pure contact glove and the life it will have. Pure contact is a quality latex foam that has good properties of both sides. It's durable but not so durable it sacrifices too much stickiness.
The life span will not be determined by two factors How often you play and How you play. If you are playing twice a week and soccer is more of a hobby then you should see good life out of your gloves and should be able to have them for 6 months to a year. If you are playing three to four times a week and are a more competitive player your gloves are getting some weekly work and you are more likely to see between 4 months and 8 months. If you are looking at almost daily use or multiple sessions a day (often seen at high levels such as college) your gloves will need to be replaced every 2 to 4 months. How you play is also going to share in this factor. Some goalkeepers are just harder on their equipment, and some goalkeepers due to poor technique will wear their gloves faster without even knowing it. A superman dive where you land on your stomach will often cause a lot of damage to the palm. Getting up from a dive using the palm of the glove will cause damage. Holding on to the net can rip straight into the glove. The surface you play on can cause huge impacts. Turf is a glove killer, and dirt can be the same.
We all want high performance from our gloves and a great life span, but there are a lot of factors that can alter how long those gloves last.