Monday, August 23, 2010

Football Equipment Day for Youth Football

You know that youth football season is getting close when
it is time to start picking up your football equipment.
Most organizations will have one or two days where the kids
show up to a predetermined area to get their gear. The
type, quality and amount of equipment you receive will
dependon the club you are playing for. Many of the more
exclusive youth football programs, which charge allot to
play for them, may buy new equipment each and every year.

Most organizations provide at a minimum the helmet,
shoulder pads and some type of uniform. There is a sticker
of with the expiration date of the certification of
reconditioning, which needs to be on every helmet. Do not
use an unconditioned or non-certified helmet. The
certification is best if done from a reliable company such
as Ridell or Shutt. Make sure to check the helmet for this
verification sticker and do not accept any helmet that does
not have this on it. I have heard some of the
organizations with money order new helmets every year.

When getting your child fitted for the helmet make sure to
watch the process carefully. Hopefully the club has a
responsible, knowledgable person fitting the helmets on the
kids, but watch the process just to make sure. Firm is the
only correct way for a helmet to fit a player. You want no
movement from the helmet around the head. It needs to be
firm and not be able to slide up and down or left to right.
The front pad needs to press firmly against the fore head,
while the jaw pads need to have no space between them and
the jaw bone. Check the back of the skull area, making sure
the padding in the helmet fits it snuggly and firm. Please
understand I am giving general things to look for and this
is by no means a complete guide. Always check with the
equipment manager, or another qualified person, that the
helmets are fitting correctly.

Shoulder pads are the next piece of equipment to look at
make sure they are fitting your son correctly. A simple
test is to lift up the plastic pad portion and verify that
the soft pad area covers the entire shoulder. Next check
all the hardware to make sure there are no pointy screws or
metal pieces sticking out. Next check the clamps to make
sure they fit well and review the straps confirming they
are in good shape.

Most of the other equipment you may receive is rib guards,
girdles and pads for the pants. You always hold the option
of purchasing your own pads and equipment if you do not
like what you receive from the organization. There are
inexpensive options for good quality pads.

In concluding, do not be in a rush when picking up your
football equipment. Likewise , don't be a pain in the
rear, just make sure everything fits right. It will be a
hectic day, so you will have to take on this responsibility
yourself.


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Jim Oddo has been coaching pee wee, flag, pop warner and
youth football for over 23 years. He has attained an 80+%
winning percentage. Read how to win with over 400 FREE tips
and posts regarding every area of little guy football at:
http://footballplaybooks.info . In addition to coaching
tips, there are many different offensive and defensive
playbooks all modified in Youth Football Playbooks.

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