Subscribe to our free fortnightly newsletter and stay ahead with the latest news in independent education
Daniel Goddard

How to look after your school sports equipment

Daniel Goddard offers his tips on looking after sports equipment, focusing on reducing risk and prolonging product life

Posted by Stephanie Broad | August 03, 2016 | Sports & Leisure

Most sports equipment is made of tough materials and is designed to withstand getting dirty and sustaining heavy use. But if you want to guarantee years of solid, reliable use, you need to get into the habit of cleaning and maintaining your sports equipment. The trick is knowing not just how to clean your sports gear, but how often to do it.

It’s important to use the best equipment, and buying the cheapest might be false economy. A better quality product will last much longer than a cheaper alternative. A cheap machine stitched football (with stitching on show) isn’t going to last as long as a hand stitched football (part hidden stitching) on a 3G pitch surrounded by fencing.

The two most important factors are to reduce risk and prolong life.

Reducing risk

This is by far the most important consideration when looking after sports equipment. New equipment should always be purchased from a reputable supplier to ensure product standards are met, for example, you should only buy football goals that confirm with BS 748 or 8462 regulations.

A risk assessment should be carried out on all equipment within its playing environment (e.g. the pitch or playground).

Do not forget to regularly visibly check all equipment on every occasion before the equipment. Whether that’s a dedicated pitch or on the playground.

Products can be particularly dangerous when in storage or in transit. Goalposts, for example, pose a risk of tipping when not anchored to a fixed point, particularly when being transported.

Finally, it’s never a good idea to modify your equipment, as this will invalidate any safety tests carried out by the manufacturer.

Prolonging life

Products must be cleaned as recommended by the manufacturer on a regular basis. All equipment should be maintained as necessary, whether it’s a case of lubricating moving parts, repainting, or addressing the general wear and tear. Ensure products have been assembled correctly following manufacturer’s instructions.

When moving equipment, it should be done only by capable users who will not take short cuts. Only use the product for which it has been designed for. Football goals for example, should not become climbing frames.

If a part is broken or needs replacing, try to obtain spare parts from the original manufacture to ensure reliable compatibility.

When storing your equipment, keep it in a suitable area, a dry space at room temperature. Any netting should be kept out of direct sunlight and out of reach of rodents.

Daniel Goddard is Manager of Stadia Sports.

Subscribe to our free fortnightly newsletter and stay ahead with the latest news in independent education

Related stories

Ground-breaking ceremony for Abbey Gate's new development

4 things we learnt at the HMC Autumn Conference 2017

O'Neills: 100 years of sportswear

A new canopy brand for schools

Amazing spaces in independent schools

How to deal with unreasonable complaints

Bring Your Own Device: 24/7 learning?

An outdoor classroom solution for Heywood Prep School

Independent Education Today: September issue now available

Why schools should not restrict adventure and ambition

Market place - view all

Raging Bull

Rugby heritage clothing brand; brought to you by Rugby Legend Phil ...

Sparkol

Sparkol makes tools to engage your audience. They're like nothing y...

Taplanes

Located in the village of Nidd, Taplanes began life as a subsidiar...

Tech Data

As one of the world's largest wholesale distributors of technology,...

Britcab

Need a portable cabin or modular building?

We sell and hire ...

Squad kit

doOur sportswear products have been developed in close cooperation...