Can You Put a Girdle In The Dryer?Football is a North American obsession. Whether it’s being a super fan cheering on your favourite team during the Super Bowl on American Thanksgiving weekend or attending your son’s high school games and yelling out support from the sidelines, there’s no doubt that most sports-minded families love football.Books are written about it; movies are made celebrating it, and those who play football at the college or professional level become as rich and famous as Hollywood stars. Scores of column inches are dedicated to this game, and websites galore track the success and failure of each team in Canada and the U.S. as they progress through the season.Whether you’re playing the game yourself or looking after the gear of someone who is, cleaning the uniform is no doubt a weekly or even daily necessity. After all, few sports involve as much direct contact as football. No player gets through a game without diving into the dirt, sailing through the air, and landing on the ground on the field. Stains are ground in during the few hours it takes to play one game of football, and getting the uniform clean for the next time on the field can be downright challenging.Each piece of a football uniform requires specific care to keep looking its best and extend its lifespan in order to avoid having to replace something halfway through the season. Football jerseys and girdles aren’t cheap! Even if your child’s school or college supplies their uniform, it is up to them (or their parents) to ensure it stays in good shape.More important than the economics of it, however, is the protection role a girdle plays during a game. If a football girdle isn’t cared for properly, the waistband may stretch out, and the padding over the thighs and hips may shift. No one wants that. When a player is tackled on the field and falls hard on the ground, they want to be confident that their girdle will do what it was designed to do and help protect them. For a football girdle to do its best to keep a player safe and “insulate” them from bruising and scrapes, their girdle has to be cared for in a very particular way.We know that plenty of our readers are the ones cleaning football uniforms for the kids in their houses, and we want to help.We did some research into how you can not only wash the jersey and girdle, but other issues, too – for example, can you put a football girdle in the dryer? What’s the best way to take good care of each piece of your child’s uniform? How do you get out those nasty dirt and grass stains? For tips on how to get the cleanest football uniform possible, continue reading! (If your child is heading off to college next year and will have to care for their uniform themselves, pass along this article to them by bookmarking it on their phone!)
- First Things First: Bang Out All The Loose Dirt
Football jerseys, girdles and pads can indeed get filthy during a game but don’t just plunge everything into the wash the minute you get home. When you’re ready to clean it, first separate the pieces and take them outside or down to the basement to get rid of loose dirt. You might be surprised by how much soil and grass clings to a uniform, but it comes off quite easily when you take this step first. Then, take a brush with soft bristles and go at the girdle and jersey again. Even more dirt will fall off. Once you’ve done this, the various uniform pieces are almost ready for washing. Almost!
- Have a Detergent On Hand That’s Designed For Pre-soaking
Because grass stains, in particular, can be tough to get out even if they’ve only been on the girdle and jersey for a few hours, pre-soaking these pieces is very helpful. Mix a laundry detergent for delicate fabrics with a product designed to tackle stains, like Oxy Clean, for example.Let the girdle sit in lukewarm or even cold water, mixed with the stain-fighting soap, until all the marks appear to be fading. If they haven’t been on the jersey or girdle for very long, the stains will begin breaking down quite quickly.
- Should You Wash a Football Girdle – By Machine Or By Hand?
It’s up to you, really. Just remember that if you decide to put it into your washing machine, you should first put it into a mesh laundry bag, as doing so will help protect the girdle during the wash cycle. A mesh bag stops the girdle from becoming caught in other items. Put the wash on the gentle cycle, so the fabric isn’t torn or tangled, which a regular cycle might cause. And our research revealed that you should never wash a football girdle with clothing that has a zipper – a pair of jeans, for example, or a jacket. Should the teeth of a zipper get caught in a football girdle, they could easily tear the fabric. Although you may have done the pre-soak in lukewarm water, when it comes time to put the girdle in the washing machine it’s best to use cold.And use a soap that’s made for gentle clothing – the same soap you use to hand wash your good, wool sweaters is likely the same one you’ll use for your child’s football gear. Although most football girdles are made of a blend of nylon, spandex, silicon and polyester – all very durable materials – it’s the shape that can be negatively affected by washing them incorrectly.Wash the girdle like it’s your mom’s best linen – very carefully! If you decide to hand wash the uniform pieces instead, simply fill a sink or tub with cold water add a little soap, swish them around a few times, and proceed to the next step.
- Should You Put a Football Girdle In The Dryer?
No, you shouldn’t, not even on a tumble cycle with almost no heat. Because you want to clean it but also preserve a girdle’s shape, it’s best if you hang it on a clothes line to dry naturally, or lay it flat on a sturdy towel.Football girdles (and other pieces of gear) need to be treated delicately, and that means no machine drying, and definitely no dry cleaning! We know it may seem curious that an item that’s designed to take a lot of abuse on the field can be quite finicky to care for, but washing and drying a football girdle properly means you won’t have to replace it for quite a while. And because football gear can run into hundreds of dollars, it’s wise to make each piece last as long as possible.
- Before You Store a Girdle, Disinfect It
Our research showed that using a mild disinfectant, like a solution of water and vinegar, helps stop mould and bacteria in their tracks, and keeps the girdle sanitized until you need it again the following season. Pour a little white vinegar into a tub of cold water and let the girdle sit for a few minutes. Once it has thoroughly dried, you can put it away knowing the girdle is fully sanitized and hygienic.
- Why Does Taking Care Of a Football Girdle Matter So Much?
If you have a football player in the house, you know that the girdle is one of the most important pieces of gear a team member wears. A girdle is rather like a pair of long, fitted underwear, with padding stitched into the sides and hips. The padding helps protect a player from the damage a bad hit from another player can potentially inflict.When a player is taken down or sent flying several feet — and let’s be honest it happens a lot in football — a girdle helps ensure the effects aren’t too serious when they are knocked off their feet. That’s why it’s so vital that a football girdle is well cared for. It has to retain its shape and padding all season long. That goes for all the separate pieces of their uniform, not only the girdle. All the different parts of a football uniform can last well as long as they are all properly cleaned and stored.
Football is a contact sport, and players get hit and tackled all the time. It’s the nature of the game! There’s nothing you can do about that – it’s virtually impossible for a player to finish a game without all kinds of dirt, grass and debris clinging to their uniform. However, if you’re in charge of keeping their gear fresh and clean, following the guidelines we’ve reported here will make your job easier. After all, a player doesn’t mind ending a game looking filthy, but they prefer starting one looking their best!