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A Sporting Chance

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A Sporting Chance
Keep your winter sporting equipment clean, organized and ready to use again

You’ve just got home from hockey, downhill skiing or some other winter sporting activity—and you’re spent. You barely have the energy to lift a finger, let alone sort your equipment and sweaty clothes. The good news… it doesn’t take much to get properly sorted after a day of winter fun. And taking a little time right now to get your equipment and clothing clean, dry and organized will be a blessing the next time you reach for them.

The equipment
Have a towel ready to dry off all your equipment. Keep a Rubbermaid Stick & Store Suspension Basket close to your winter sports station to store a towel and other cleaning supplies. For hockey players, be sure to wipe off your blades. Skiers, make sure water isn’t trapped in the recesses of your bindings. Pull the soft inner liner out of the hard plastic shell of your ski boots to let both dry completely. Wax those skis or boards, making sure the edges are well covered with wax to keep them from rusting, and the base, too, to prevent it from drying out. Once dried and waxed, hang your skis or snowboards (bindings facing out) on Rubbermaid’s Winter Sports Rack, part of the FastTrack Garage system. Its “soft grip” coating protects your snowboards, skis and boots from nicks and scratches. The rack is easy to attach and adjust on the steel FastTrack rail, so it’s able to meet anyone’s changing storage needs. And you can easily remove it when the winter is over. If you don’t have the FastTrack system in your garage, not to worry: the rack can be screwed into the wall for winter equipment storage.

Hockey sticks scattered everywhere? Gather them together in Rubbermaid’s Sports Station, which holds up to 20 bats or sticks. Best of all: it’s easy to assemble, and won’t rust, dent, rot or peel. Plus, there’s no need to take it down when winter is over: it has a removable mesh bag that can hold equipment and sports balls for all seasons.

Outer layers
If you’ve spent good money on snowboarding or skiing attire, you probably want to be sure it lasts, at least until it goes out of fashion. So carefully follow manufacturers’ instructions and recommendations on labels. Your coated nylon clothing should repel stains, but try water and a mild soap if they do get dirty. Stain-remover kits can help, but be wary of brush-head applicators that come with them. It is better to apply the cleansing agent gently by hand. If your outdoor clothing is wrinkled, it’s safer to hang them in the bathroom and let them steam while you shower rather than machine drying them. Never iron garments that have a coating such as Gore-Tex, or they will melt! Be particularly diligent at cleaning zippers since dirt can compromise their effectiveness.

Inner layers
Hockey equipment can really smell if it’s left to sit after usage. Make sure you air the equipment out after every game and let it dry properly. And no matter what your activity, get your undergarments laundered immediately if possible. One solution: choose a convenient spot—in the garage, at the back door, in the mudroom or basement—to serve as a winter sports drop-off for laundry. Before you leave home place a Rubbermaid hamper there and, when you return home, transport your dirty, sweaty clothing straight to the laundry room. Whether you change clothes at the rink, ski hill or right there at the drop-off spot, get into the habit of using the hamper and soon it will become routine. The hamper has an easy-to-pull handle that folds down, two additional handles for easy lifting and wheels for easy maneuverability. So it won’t sap what little energy you do have left.

Now, bring on the hot chocolate!