As I have eluded to numerous times in this blog…I am not so good at sports. But as part of my job, we have this beer league softball type league where we all get together on Fridays and play the best to our abilities. Here is what I have learned about this surprisingly fun game.
Softball is much like baseball but played in a smaller field. The equipment used for playing softball generally depends on the age of the player, the type of game and the player’s position. The type of game can be a fast pitching or slow pitching game. A fast pitching game requires more protective equipment. Here’s a list of equipment that is needed in softball.
They’re usually larger than baseball balls. They range from anywhere between 10 inches to 16 inches. Younger players use smaller inch sized balls. Softball does not mean that the balls in themselves are soft, they are made of hard leather and that is why protective equipment is necessary.
Softball bats again differ from baseball bats. Designed to pitch larger balls, they are usually made of either aluminum or wood. Aluminum may be enhanced with titanium to make the bat lighter and to avoid shock to the player when hitting the ball. Aluminum is preferred more to wood as a material for the bats. They are designed in a specified weight to length ratio and they are manufactured according to the player’s age. Younger players of course get smaller bats as compared to adult players. For really young players, the bats may have an addition at the handle to increase grip and prevent the ball from sliding out of the player’s hand. The best slowpitch softball bats of 2016 are already being released and include some great offerings!
They are not really a necessity but they are used nonetheless, mostly by specific players in specific positions. They are designed to catch the ball and since it is quite comparably large, the gloves are also quite large as compared to baseball gloves. I love this site which shows the best 2016 softball gloves available.
They are used to mark the ground to discern where players stop or hit the home run. In league matches, as a requirement, they should be grounded. In ordinary matches however, such as an outdoor family event, they could be anything even a T-shirt since they are just markers.
Head gear is worn to protect the players from head injury. Balls can cause considerable damage or death if they strike one’s head. Helmets protect the players from such injuries.
They are modified shin guards that protect the slider from injury. They are heavily padded and with a smooth finish.
In softball the players with more likelihood of getting injured get more protective equipment. Enhancements to improve on safety include body protection gear to cover the chest and prevent body injury and mouth guards. In some places, special footwear is also a requirement but that is not a necessity.