Of all the things we own in the modern world, sports equipment may be the most awkward to keep around the house. Books and dishes stack, computers stay on desks, and most homes have a designated place for everything. Of course, you can keep sports equipment neat at home, but what if you have a lot of it, perhaps for three or four sports? Self-storage may be the solution.
Sports Equipment in the House
Team sports are great. You may play with friends, on a team at work, or your kids might play basketball, baseball, football, or another fun team sport. Whatever the case, you know that when it comes to putting the equipment away at home it can be clunky. You might make room in a cabinet or a bin for balls, but related equipment, like baseball bats or hockey sticks, can easily fall over.
If you have just a few items, it’s easy enough to make room in a corner to put them away together. However, if, like many families, you have all sorts of equipment, it gets tricky fast. If you have a garage, you may have enough room to safely store all your equipment.
If not, a self-storage locker is a great solution. For most collections, a 5’x5’ unit, which is akin to a walk-in closet at home, is perfect. Now, if you want to store several bikes, you may need a larger unit, perhaps a 5’x10’ or a 10’x10’, but equipment for most team sports should fit nicely in the smallest standard self-storage unit.
Storing Sports Equipment Neatly
When preparing your equipment for storage, take the necessary steps to make sure it’s all in good condition and stored safely.
While playing out on a field your bats, balls, and so on can get smudged by dirt, so clean them and look over them. Some pieces of equipment, if damaged, must be replaced, such as baseballs with broken seams or cracked cycling helmets. Make sure you have everything you need to play. If you’re a golfer, that means extra golf balls. If you play basketball or football, you may want a couple of extra balls and a working pump to refill their air.
When storing sports uniforms, make sure they have been washed, dried, ironed, and folded before putting them in a box for storage.
You can decide how to sort your sports equipment. Just make sure you have a system. Perhaps you will have one bin for large balls like soccer balls, baseballs, and footballs, and a taller bin to stand your bats and hockey sticks up in. Golf clubs should be kept in their own bag. Or, you may choose to store by sport.
If you can put up a large peg board in your unit, this works great for hats, from biking and football helmets to baseball caps. Simply put the pegs where you like and hang the helmets from them.
Storing Uniforms? Consider Climate Control
Sports equipment is made to withstand rough treatment and all sorts of weather. For many items, climate control will not be necessary. Clothes, helmets, balls, and so on should get through the winter just fine. Sure, you may have to pump back up the inflatable balls before you play again, but that’s a good idea anyway.
Not every bit of equipment will do so well during the summer, though, particularly anything made of cloth. Rising humidity can cause clothing, including hats, to become just damp enough to grow mold.
If you live in an area with humid summers, and you plan to store your sports equipment during those months, think about if you will need climate control.
One final suggestion regarding this: do not put a plastic tarp over your sports equipment. If you must put anything over it, use a clean cotton sheet. The former can trap moisture beneath it and even your non-cloth items could grow mold. The latter breathes and will lessen that possibility.
Ongoing Use of Self-Storage
There are a few ways you may want to use your self-storage unit as a sports locker. You could keep all your off-season sports equipment there and any current-season equipment at home.
Or, maybe you want to keep your home free of awkward sports equipment, so whenever you plan to go to the park to play baseball or another sport, you stop by your storage locker, pick up what you need, and go.
Finally, you could keep the the equipment for the current season at the front of the locker for easy access, and rotate it to the back when the season for the next sport rolls around.
However you plan to use this storage space, you’ll see how it will help you enjoy the sports you love while keeping your home organized.