How to Break in a Baseball Glove in 7 Simple Steps
Breaking in a new baseball glove can be arduous, but it does not have to be.
In this complete guide on how to break in a baseball glove, I will go over everything you need to know to make the process easier and quicker, including the best tools to use, how to take care of your baseball gloves throughout their lifetime, and more.
What You Need
- A bucket of hot water (not boiling).
- A cup.
- A soft surface (a carpet or pillow).
- Glove hammer/glove mallet.
Step 1: Hot Water
You must start with the correct temperature of the water.
If the water is too hot, the glove can become misshapen and form wrinkles and creases.
If the water is cold, it will not be easy to hold heat.
So, prepare hot water with a temperature of 150-160 and do not use boiling water.
Step 2: Make your Baseball Glove Wet with a Cup
The next step is to get your glove wet. Cup the water up in your cupped hand and pour it over the entire surface of the glove.
Your goal is not only to dampen the leather but also to ensure water on both sides of the glove.
Step 3: Stretching the Leather
Once the glove is wet, grab the end of one finger and stretch it down until it touches the other side of the glove.
Hold for a few seconds and repeat with each finger.
Next, grab the wrist area and pull it until it touches where your hand will go inside.
Hold for a few seconds before releasing so that you are stretching out that part too.
Finally, work on massaging your glove as if giving it a deep tissue massage, squeezing it from top to bottom, left to right, and front-to-back.
Step 4: Pound the Glove with Glove Hammer
One way to properly break in a glove is using a glove hammer (or wooden mallet). Before pounding, ensure you have a soft surface or pillow on the floor.
Pound the back of the glove with the flat side of the hammer until you find the breaking point. Then, move down and work on breaking in each finger individually.
Pound the area between the thumb and first finger until you find a spot where they are separating.
Continue this process for each finger.
Repeat this process around the glove, working towards both sides of the palm and all four fingers.
You want to hit these areas at different angles so they do not become hard spots inside the glove.
If you begin experiencing pain while pounding the glove, take a break. If, after resting for an hour or two, you still experience pain, stop altogether.
Step 5: Make a Pocket and Pound Again
The fifth step is to make the pocket.
To do this, take the round end of your ball peen hammer and pound one side. Pound hard enough so that you make an indention on the leather.
Please do this for about five minutes total, then turn around and do it for about five more minutes on the other side.
Now pound all around the pocket to get rid of any wrinkles or folds in the leather.
Step 6: Test it out
After you have gone through all the steps of how to break in a baseball glove and take care of it, it is time to test it out.
It is essential not just for catching the ball but also for testing how well the baseball glove still fits on your hand. You should have a good grip around the ball with no pain or discomfort.
If you play catch and something does not feel right, check back over your steps and see if you missed anything.
If everything is as it should be, you are ready for baseball!
Step 7: Stretch out the Fingers
As simple as this step may seem, it is one of the most important.
If you do not stretch out the fingers of your baseball glove, then your hand will be uncomfortable when you are playing catch.
Once you have stretched out all five fingers of the baseball glove, it is ready for use!
The Wrong Methods for Breaking in Baseball Gloves
There are many ways you can break in your baseball glove.
Some people say the best way is by taking it out and throwing a ball against a brick wall, doing a glove steaming process, and using brand new glove conditioner or shaving cream while others say that you should fill it with water and put it on high heat or microwave it.
But these methods are not the most effective ways of breaking in your glove.
Do not try these methods. Not only will they wither your baseball glove but also wholly damage it.
Benefits of Breaking in Your Baseball Gloves
Whether you are a baseball or softball player, breaking your baseball or softball glove is an incredibly satisfying process that can take a long time, depending on how often you play.
Here are just some of the benefits you will experience when you break in your brand new baseball glove:
- Your glove will mold to your hand for the perfect fit.
- You will have better control over catching and throwing.
- It will be easier for you to close the glove with one hand.
- You will be able to make quicker decisions on the field.
- The glove leather becomes softer and supple, so it does not wear out quickly.
There you have it, folks! Follow these steps to know how to break in a baseball glove, and you will break in like new.
Remember that the more time you spend with your new baseball glove, the easier it will break in and the better it will feel on your hands!