Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Get Your Gear in Order


                 Save money. Recycle and reuse when you can.   

                                         Guess what this use to be?
                        Hint:  You probably have one in your driveway.

   Yes, it was once a plastic driveway hockey net and it saw a lot of action.  It was time for a new one,  but rather than tossing it out,  its PVC pipes were connected to make a sturdy equipment drying rack.  ( Brilliant! Wish I could take credit)

But we're just getting started.  Hockey mom Teri Parks takes it from here  

Biggest complaint as a hockey parent is where to put all that (stinky!) hockey equipment..well, unless you have your own locker room in your home, this is sometimes challenging. A whole article can be written alone on how to avoid smelly hockey equipment and skates. But, the first task to tackle in organizing your hockey household is to have an equipment "drying area". This can be a section of the basement, mudroom or part of the laundry room as long as there is air circulating and it's at room temperature. It's important for you to dry equipment in a warm room as it will dry faster and there is less chance for bacteria to grow. There are many cheap drying racks available that you can hang equipment on between uses. Or you can even make your own using hockey sticks! ("hockey stick tree stand") If the only space you have available is in the garage, I would suggest a "hockey locker" or cabinet that contains a heat drying system (you can find these pretty reasonably priced online). A hockey cabinet not only serves a purpose of drying the equipment, but also acts as a place of storage so, visually it makes things look neater in your space.

-HOCKEY BAG:The hockey bags purpose is to transport the equipment, not to keep hockey equipment inside for hours and hours. After each game/practice, the equipment should be taken out of the bag and hung up to dry as mentioned above. Once you've designated an area of your house as the "drying area" for the equipment, there also needs to be a place to hang/put the hockey bag other than the floor. Any strong wall hook (may need two) can hold a hockey bag or you can use a coat rack (or "hockey stick tree stand" again), especially if you have more than one to keep things vertical, which uses less space.

-HOCKEY SKATES: Hockey skates are not cheap and should also be cared for properly and stored in there own designated place. An inexpensive tip to drying skates faster is to place them on your register heaters or the use of drying racks will also do the trick. Once dry, skates can be stored away in decorative bins on shelving unit next to equipment. Be sure to use blade covers on skates when putting in bins. Or you can mount metal skate organizing racks to wall.

-HOCKEY STICKS: There are several ways you can store hockey sticks. There are many varieties of stick wall mounts available. Be sure to place them on a wall where it would be easy to just grab and go. If you have a hockey equipment cabinet, you can mount two stingle hockey stick holders on each side giving you a spot to place four sticks. If your hockey equipment area is in the basement and you have lower hanging ceilings, you can make your own overhanging hockey stick holder by using two pieces of 4x4's about 6.5 feet long, screw in four heavy duty screw hooks (two on each end of 4x4), hang steel linked chain (length depends on how low you want holder to hang down from ceiling) pieces on each four screw hooks and mount to ceiling. Once holder is up, place hockey sticks along 4x4's...can hold up to 20 sticks!

-HOCKEY JERSEYS: You can use a simple portable clothes rack with hangers for hockey jerseys that is in the open for drying purposes or once jersey is dry, place in a closet/cabinet that would be near the rest of the equipment.

Another suggestion in keeping your hockey area neat and presentable is to use a corner of a wall (ex: basement or garage) and build out a 5'width x 2-3'deep area using two wood or metal rods from one wall to the other near the ceiling where you can hang a curtain. This way everything is contained and organized in one concealed spot, air is able to circulate for drying purposes and it would be decoratively appealing.

Overall, when organizing your hockey space you need to keep these things in mind...needs to be functional for drying, room enough to keep all hockey items together (you don't want your equipment in the basement, hockey sticks in the garage and skates in the mudroom..all over the house!), everything needs to have a home/neatly stored and last but not least, keep it as decorativley appealing as possible!

Teri Parks
Design Appeal Home Staging

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