If you’re a Frisco local, you know the role that sports play in your community. From the Dallas Cowboys training facility to NBA G League affiliate the Texas Legends, Frisco is filled with training facilities for major sports teams as well as arenas where tomorrow’s athletic superstars are born. With all of the focus on football, hockey and everything in between, it’s no surprise that in 2011, Men’s Journal named Frisco as the Best Place to Raise an Athlete. Seeing sports superstars around town is enough to inspire anyone to pick up a ball, bat or stick and get in the game.
Whether you’re raising a family filled with budding athletes or you yourself like playing sports as much as you like watching them, you know that athletic endeavors come with a lot of stuff. Depending on what sport you or those in your household are into, there are bats, balls, cleats and helmets to wrangle—and don’t forget the uniforms. That’s an awful lot of equipment, especially for team sports that are played on a seasonal basis.
If you’re drowning in sports equipment, here’s how to wrangle it and store it.
Why Use Self Storage for Sports Equipment
You might be thinking, can’t I just round up all of the sports equipment in my home and stick it in the garage?
And sure, you could do that. But here’s why renting a storage unit is a better choice. Unlike your garage, attic, basement or shed, a storage unit offers climate control to keep your sports equipment at a safe temperature and humidity level no matter what the weather might bring. Summers in Frisco are hot and humid and winters can bring unexpectedly cold temperatures and snow. Extreme heat, cold, humidity or lack thereof can wreak havoc on sports equipment. That leather baseball glove might warp and that helmet could crack due to expansion and contractions related to temperature fluctuations. Not to mention, there’s the issue of security. A storage unit is constantly monitored in order to prevent theft. Trust us, that shed in your backyard is no match for the security features that can be found at a storage unit.
Inspect and Clean
Before storing your sports equipment, it’s crucial that you inspect and clean each piece of gear thoroughly. Dirt, sweat and stains from that spilled Gatorade or post-game snack can cause issues in storage if left untreated—and that’s not even getting into the smell of shin guards after soccer practice.
Machine wash uniforms and other clothing and hand wash other items in warm water with dish soap. If clothes or pieces of sports equipment are still smelly (and chances are, they will be), place them in a closed container such as a garbage bag or box. Carefully place a container of open baking soda in with the items, taking care to ensure that the baking soda does not actually touch the items. Seal the items up with the baking soda and leave it for a week, or until the odor is gone. For extra smelly stuff, you may need to replace the baking soda periodically.
Now that your sports equipment is clean, it’s time to organize it. It’s amazing how easy it is to forget what items are in which box after leaving your belongings in storage for a season, so you’ll thank yourself later if you take the time to organize.
There are three ways to organize your sports equipment. You can do it by sport, by child/member of the household or by type of item (balls, helmets, clothing etc.). Do whatever makes sense to you, and stick to it.
Let Items Breathe
Most items do best in self storage when they are able to breathe, and sports equipment is no exception. You can store balls in the large mesh bags that are designed for this. You can use these same bags, or breathable cotton laundry bags, for other items.
Choosing the Right Storage Unit
If you’ve never used self storage before, it can be tricky to figure out what to look for in a storage unit. Let’s start with size. If you’re only using a storage unit to store sports equipment, a 5x5 or smaller will give you about as much space as an extra closet would. A larger storage unit might be a good idea if you’re storing more than just sports equipment. You’re also going to want climate control to prevent your items from cracking, warping or growing mold.
And that’s about it! Renting a storage unit will not only reduce sports equipment related clutter around your home, it can also offer a solution for other items that need seasonal storage, such as your Christmas decorations, Halloween costumes and winter and summer wardrobes.