Rain and snow games completely change the strategy of football, both on offense & defense. Football players also face a big decision to wear their gloves or take them off during rain & snow games.
Football players should not wear gloves during rain or snow games, as they provide no advantage. Football gloves become slick and lose their grip when they get wet. It will also ruin your gloves as they’re more prone to rip at the seams.
This article will show you why you shouldn’t wear gloves in wet weather.
Wearing Gloves In Wet Weather
The gloves look great and, overall, can complete the look. Players who play skill positions tend to look awkward if they’re not wearing gloves.
Gloves help players in dry conditions to snag footballs that sometimes can’t be caught with bare hands. In wet weather, however, it makes sense not to wear gloves.
Too much water, however, and the surface of the gloves becomes slick. Football gloves are often made from silicone and polyester. When drenched in water, football gloves will have the opposite of a sticky effect.
Once the gloves become wet, it’s very tough to dry them off. If there’s a situation in the 4th quarter where the weather dies down, the gloves will still be soaked earlier in the game.
This is why we recommend you check the weather before every game. Monitor to see if the rain will start in the first or second half of the game. If it begins in the first half, maybe you put the gloves away in the first half and use them in the second. Don’t rely on the day conditions to determine if you wear gloves or not; check the nightly forecast.
Keeping a Dry Towel In A Bag For Your Gloves
It’s essential to have a coach or another player keep a dry towel in a bag nearby can pay dividends in wet weather. We recommend only using the towel in timeouts, before the start of drives, or in between quarters. If the rain is on and off, a towel can be placed on the hip to be used when necessary.
Using an ordinary towel is good, but if you can purchase a towel built for these circumstances, it will help tremendously. Grip Boost has a towel made to keep gloves and hands dry.
The Grip Boost towel can be found here on Amazon.
If you’re looking for more of a traditional towel to keep in a bag or even off of your back hip, we recommend looking at this Nike towel, Adidas’s custom white towel, or this white Under Armour towel that fits snug on your belt.
Playing Football With Wet Football Gloves
Footballs are naturally slick. If you don’t believe it, open up a brand new football (which most referees will require) and try to throw and catch it. It’s extremely tough to catch and secure the ball.
This is why professional players will have someone working the footballs before the game. They typically take a brush and scrape the football until all the slickness has worn down.
This video from Wilson will show you how to prepare your football:
Running Back Wearing Gloves In Wet Weather
If you’re a running back and typically wear gloves, it may be in your best interest not to wear them in wet weather. Securing football is your number one priority.
Fumbles often occur because of improper points of pressure being applied, mainly from the fingertips. Not wearing gloves will add a better layer of grip to the football. Wearing a hand warmer on the back/front of your hips is an excellent alternative to keeping your hands try or even warm during a wet game.
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Wide Receivers Wearing Gloves In Wet Weather
Catching the football from the quarterback is the most important task for a wide receiver. Slick footballs and wet gloves aren’t a great mix. Removing gloves in a wet game is a must for wide receivers.
Another helpful tip for players who may always wear gloves to catch the football is to catch the football with their bodies during wet games. I know this goes against traditional ball-catching principles, but turnovers off tip passes are what hurts the team the most, with no incompletions.
Quarterbacks Wearing Gloves In Wet Weather
It’s not often a quarterback wears gloves, but if you’re a quarterback who wears gloves to throw, you might want to think about taking them off for rain games.
Rotate a dry towel both to your center and your back/front hip to ensure your hands are always dry. Protecting the football and making sure it’s delivered properly is the quarterback’s number one goal in wet weather games.
Keeping Your Football Gloves Conditioned
It’s reasonable to wash most football gloves (always check with the manufacturer to see if your gloves are machine washable). However, rain and mud conditions aren’t ideal for keeping your gloves conditioned.
If gloves aren’t stored properly after a rain game (thrown in the back of a locker, for instance), they will get hard and crumple up, essentially taking the whole “stick” aspect out of the glove. Treat your gloves as if you would treat your hands.
Wash them, dry them, and make sure that they’re stored in a useful place. Also, football gloves tend to go for an average price point of $40-$60. This is another reason why we advocate for keeping gloves inside during wet weather. Damaging your football gloves after one rainy game can result in wasted money.
Catching The Football In Wet Weather Without Gloves
As mentioned above, we need to change our catching style when it’s raining, or Body catches are safer to secure the football rather than trying to catch the football with our hands.
Here is a great video of Michael Irving explaining this concept to young receivers. Watch the video here:
Ultimately, catching the football with or without gloves is your own personal preference. We recommend that you take care of your gloves, as there’s a good chance you spent a good amount of money on them.
If you do have some extra money to buy practice as well as game gloves, we highly recommend you do so as well. Gloves are a prized possession to a skilled player and should be treated as such.
Related Q & A
Can Gloves Rip In Wet Weather?
Football gloves are more apt to rip in wet weather, as the material will soften and make it more vulnerable when engaging in contact. Keep gloves dry to avoid the softening of the gloves and keep them protected.
Can I Wear My Gloves In The Rain?
Yes, you can wear your gloves in the rain, and during practice, we believe it’s not going to help your catching ability or ability to hold the football. The “sticky” part of the glove will lose its stick and essentially become useless.