What Is Too Cold For Softball? (5 Best Clothes For Cold)
When the summer starts to fade, and more cold breezes are beginning to appear, it’s only natural to think when it will be too cold to play softball. I play a lot of indoor sports, such as table tennis or badminton, so when I first tried softball, and it was chilly outside, I too wondered this same question. After some research, here is what I found!
In general, temperatures below 32°F (0°C) are too cold for softball, and the games should be canceled. In addition, softball manufacturers don’t recommend playing softball below 50°F (10°C), as the bats can get damaged from cold temperatures.
Most games are indeed canceled when the temperatures look like going below 32°F (0°C).
However, the recommendation of 50°F (10°C) that some manufacturers such as Easton haves are often ignored by a couple of degrees Fahrenheit. That’s because many softball players are so into the sport that little cold or rain won’t stop them.
To further understand why manufacturers like Easton say you shouldn’t play softball below the temperature of 50°F (10°C), we need to understand the connection between softball bats and temperatures.
Is Cold Weather Bad for Softball Bats?
Did you know that the ideal temperature to store softballs and softball bats is room temperature and normal humidity levels? The temperature is approximately 72°F (22°C), and the humidity level is 50%.
So, if the ideal temperature is 72°F, there is a big temperature drop to 32°F, which can damage equipment, and an even bigger drop to 32°F when games should be canceled. Naturally, this makes you wonder whether cold weather is bad for softball bats and how long can softball bats last.
Cold weather is bad for softball bats for two reasons. First, the cold will make both aluminum and composite bats denser, which will cause cracks in the composite bats and dents in the aluminum bats. Second, cold weather will make softballs denser, which will further cause damage to the bats.
To add, the majority of the potential damage caused by cold temperatures isn’t, in fact, the fault of the bats but the ball. The softball is the piece of equipment that will become dense faster, first damaging the bat at the point of contact. Keep that in mind if there is a way to keep the balls warm before pitching.
Also, there is a difference between bats. Composite bats are less durable in cold weather than aluminum ones, which is why some manufacturers recommend keeping the minimum temperature with composite bats as high as 60°F (15°C). This can sound weird as the temperatures go below 60°F in so many places.
However, that is the recommendation, but it isn’t possible for many softball players around the globe, so if you have some practice to do, don’t let the unavoidable cold weathers stop you (until a certain point such as 32°F (0°C).
If things get cold, you need to take the proper steps to safe and comfortable softball! This is done with clothing.
What Do You Wear to Softball Practice When It’s Cold?
When it gets cold on a softball field, it’s important to know how to dress for two reasons. First of all, if you underdress, you will get very cold as softball isn’t constantly running, but there is also a lot of standing to do. Second, if you overdress, you will get too hot and slow to perform at your best.
That being said, I’ll walk you through every part of your body and the best equipment for it in cold weather. Let’s start where the magic happens, your head.
Depending on how cold it is and how well you manage cold temperatures, you might not need specific headwear meant for cold temperatures. So, depending on your position, wear your helmet or a regular visor cap.
However, if you feel like your head is exposed to too much cold air, you will have a couple of great choices. (Click the link for the products on Amazon)
- Fleece Ponytail Cap – If you like to use caps as many softball players do, then using a winter model is great. This cap has a pulldown fleece part that will protect your ears and neck from the cold. Also, you can pull out your ponytail from behind so it won’t feel like it’s on the way.
- Fleece Ponytail Headband – If you don’t like hats of any kind but want to protect your head and ears from the cold, then a fleece headband could be for you. This is like a thick and wide headband that is comfortable warm. Also, it is tight, keeping your hair in its place and vision clear. In addition, you can pull out your ponytail from behind.
- Regular Winter Beanie – If you like beanies, then I suggest getting a thin and tight one. The reason for that is a thin one can be easily used with helmets, and a tight one will keep in your head and keep your hair in place.
In softball, you often have something on your hands, whether a mitt, glove, batting gloves, and you name it.
However, when things get cold, you can use batting gloves even on your throwing arm when defending. When attacking, you will have batting gloves on by default.
A small thing to consider here is don’t use bulky batting gloves for cold. Instead, use Well-fitting, thin, and grippy batting gloves such as Seibertron B-A-R Pro.
What you wear over your body is a drastic factor in feeling too cold or too hot. For these needs, you will need a thin and breathable piece of clothing that traps your body heat inside without making you feel too hot. That sounds too good to be true, right? Well, there is something for that!
A compression long sleeve is what you will need. They are elastic, very comfortable, and breathable, and they trap your warmth so you will remain warm and fresh at the same time.
The same principles apply to your legs as it does to your torso. That’s why I often like to use two pieces of the same set with my upper and lower body.
However, I only use extra warmers on my legs when it gets really cold, like 41°F (5°C ), so depending on your personal preference, you might not need an extra layer of clothing for your legs.
In case you do need it, then Under Armour compression leggings are the same series as the long sleeve above. Therefore, the great benefits of breathability, comfort, elastics, and warmth trapping are also found in these.
These are great for softball as they allow you to move with ease.
You can use your regular softball shoes in a bit of cold weather as well, as softball isn’t played in the snow (luckily). However, using great socks is very important as a lot of your whole body’s temperature comes from the feet.
I recommend using over-the-calf socks with extra cushioning to provide more waring material for your legs with some extra comfort. A great example of this is a pack of CelerSport socks.
My Favorite Softball Equipment
Thanks for reading this article. I hope it brought you great value that you can implement into your own life! Here are my top softball equipment recommendations that I think will take your game to the next level.
- Bat: My favorite certified fastpitch softball bat is the Easton Ghost. This bat has a double-barrel construction which is incredible if you are looking for a great feel and are a fan of satisfying pop and sound. The handle is a great bonus as it’s great to hold on to and very thin. The technology used for this bat provides great durability and flexibility. This bat comes in various styles and sizes.
- Softball: The best softballs, in my opinion, are the Franklin Sports Official Softballs. These affordable yet official featured balls are perfect for practice if you want to train with a similar ball as in a real game. These balls have the official 12-inch circumference and weight. The yellow color makes it easy to spot, and the flat seams enable minimal air resistance so that they will fly consistently and far.
- Glove: Rawlings Liberty Advanced Fastpitch Glove should be introduced to every softball player. The 12.5″ size makes it a breeze to catch and secure softballs. The glove is very comfortable as it’s made from full-grain leather, and the pull-staps will perfect the fit. The design is breathtaking as well. Be prepared for a little break-in time tho.
- Fan Equipment: If you’re a fan more than a player, you don’t want to miss Fan Equipment by Fanatics. You can find items from various sports that bear your favorite team’s logo, such as jerseys, gift ideas, or other surprising things.