As mentioned a time or two, we’re in off season. For the first time in about six months, my vehicle is not storing hockey gear. There are no hockey practices on the schedule. My living room has been reclaimed from the hockey gear bags that have littered it since September.
Which brings me to my problem: there are four bags worth of hockey gear that need to be stored until next year. They have been sitting open for the last two weeks so everything should be dry at this point. But let’s not kid ourselves, there is nothing about a hockey bag that is designed for easy storage. They are bulky, they don’t stack together and they are far too heavy for any kind of shelf. So they need to sit on the floor. Ugh. Not ideal. So not ideal.
If you don’t think I considered shipping them out to our garage, you are mistaken. But there seems to be a black hole in that place. Stuff goes in there but it doesn’t come out. Also, it’s a little damp in there, especially during spring months and we are trying to avoid the damp. Damp just encourages rink stink.
So there is step number one. Always make sure the gear is dry before you store it. Otherwise there is all kinds of yuck waiting to greet you at the start of next season. Nobody wants that.
Next step is to empty out all the practice jerseys and socks. And anything else that might have migrated into the bag during the season. I also pull out anything that is broken, outgrown or in need of repair. This also helps with the drying out mentioned in step number one. Less stuff=more air circulation.
Step number three is my favorite part: Where in the actual universe do I store two players, a goalie and a trainer’s worth of gear?
As mentioned in passing, it’s not staying in the living room. So down to the basement it goes. Now we haven’t yet finished the basement. That project has been in the works for almost two years. Fact of the matter is, we have hockey from September to the end of March, then we have a few weeks until we start going to the cottage on weekends. In that time, we have a family birthday trip and the boys go on their annual fishing trip. HockeyDad also goes away to help family out with an event they host.
Clearly, I have strayed from the topic at hand. Basically, the few weeks we’re home, we aren’t necessarily at home. Or unoccupied. So for this year, the hockey bags are going downstairs into what we have roughed in as our “storage” room. Once there are walls up, we will be storing our maple syrup and canned goods down there along with the world’s largest freezer. For now, it’s just an open space in front of the laundry machines.
But it’s out of the way and easily accessible.
Also, everything will be in one place so that we’re ready to hit the ice next season. That, above all else, is the most important factor. Hockey season starts off with a bang and never really slows down, so grab and go is essential.
Where do you store your player’s gear in the off season?
See you at the rink,