PLAYER EQUIPMENT


Required Equipment 

Helmet - All helmets must have both a chin strap and a face mask secured to the helmet.  The helmets must also be NOCSAE certified with the NOCSAE certification stamp clearly visible on it. Never use a helmet that is cracked, deformed,  or if the interior padding has deteriorated.

Cleats -  Softball/baseball cleats provide stability and traction when running on both grass and the dirt infield. Unlike soccer shoes, softball/baseball cleats have a toe cleat at the tip of sole. Soccer cleats do not and are made more for running exclusively on grass.  Soccer cleats can be used for softball, but in many soccer leagues, softball/baseball cleats are not allowed. Only plastic or rubber cleats are allowed, i.e. no metal cleats, except for players in the 14U division.

Glove - Softball players require gloves that are slightly longer in length and deeper in the pocket than baseball gloves to help field the bigger balls used in softball. Avoid buying a baseball glove. See the Ball section for ball sizes used in each division. Keep these things in mind when buying a softball glove:

   Division       Glove Size     
6U9 - 11 inches
8U
10 - 11 inches
10U
10 ½ - 12 inches
12U11 ½ - 13 inches
16U
11 ½ - 13 inches

Recommended Equipment

Fielding Masks - Although not required, but HIGHLY recommended, especially for new players. These are masks worn on the field to protect players faces from bad hops, missed fly balls, or missed thrown balls. More experienced or older players tend not to use them, but it only takes that one time.

Again, recommended for new players, less experienced players, players that are unsure of themselves and their skills, and players playing on the infield (especially the pitcher, and corner positions, 1st and 3rd). Wearing a fielding mask is not a sign that you are not very good, just that you and your parents are cautious and have safety in mind. Good players wear them too.

Softball Bat - Although not required, NAGS recommends each player have their own bat. New players should try other players bat to see what is comfortable for them before buying their own.

DON'T BUY A BASEBALL BAT!!! Any softball bat used must be an ASA certified softball bat with the ASA certification stamp clearly visible on it (look for the marking on the barrel or check the ASA Equipment webpage for a list of approved and illegal bats). If certification stamp is not visible, has been worn off or the bat is damaged/disfigured, bat is considered illegal and cannot be used in game play. You will find as many different opinions about bat length/weight as you do varieties of bats. Here are some general guidelines for purchasing a softball bat:

Weight - It's best not to purchase a bat which is too heavy for your player. Rather than growing into the bat the player will develop bad habits that will be difficult to correct later on, not to mention poor self esteem because the overly heavy bat keeps the player from successfully hitting the ball. As for weight one rule of thumb is for the player to hold the bat in one hand (which ever is the top hand on the bat) and extend it out fully holding this position for at least 8-10 seconds. If the player can't do this the bat is too heavy. If in doubt about two bats it is always better to err on the side of the lighter bat!

Indications that a bat may be too heavy for a player:

  1. The player is overpowered most of the time by good fastballs.
  2. The player swings and misses a lot.
  3. When the player does make contact, balls tend to be hit weakly and to the opposite field more often than up the middle or to the player's pull side (left side for RH hitters; right side for LH hitters).

Length - Generally speaking if the bat is the proper size the player should be able to stand in the batters box in the hitting position and with arms extended and be able to reach the outside edge of the plate. If the bat extends beyond this point it's too long, can't reach this point, it's too short.

             Recommended Bat Weight by Player Height and Weight             
   Division  Player HeightPlayer WeightBat Weight
6U & 8U40" - 50"n/a15 - 16 ½ oz
6U & 8U
51" - 54"n/a16 - 17 oz
6U & 8U
55" - 60"n/a16 ½ - 17 ½ oz
8U - 10Un/a60 - 80 lbs16 ½ - 17 ½ oz
10U - 12Un/a81 - 100 lbs17 ½ - 19 oz
10U - 12Un/a
101 - 120 lbs18 - 20 oz
10U - 12U
n/a
121 - 140 lbs20 - 22 oz
10U - 12U
n/a
141+ lbs21 - 23 oz
10U - 12U
n/a141+ lbs21 - 23 oz
14U - 16U
n/a
100 lbs22 oz
14U - 16Un/a
110 lbs23 oz
14U - 16Un/a
120 lbs24 oz
14U - 16U
n/a
130 lbs25 oz
14U - 16Un/a140 lbs26 oz
14U - 16Un/a150 lbs26 ½ oz

Sliding Shorts - Sliding shorts are worn underneath uniform shorts or pants and can give players the confidence to slide without the fear of getting injured. Although they are not required, NAGS recommends them for the 8U division and above. Sliding shorts can be purchased with heavy padding or little padding.

Softball Pants - Softball/baseball pants provide an extra layer of protection during sliding and the occasional spill. However, they are not required.

Knee Guard - Sliders provide extra protection when sliding and fielding. They are optional, however, NAGS recommends them for all divisions. You can purchase long sliders that cover the knee and shin or short sliders that cover just the knee. Typically younger girls wear two long sliders and older girls wear two short sliders. Some choose to wear one of each (if going this route wear the long slider on the left leg, remember - long on left!).

Equipment Bag - Bags for your players softball equipment (helmet, glove, bat, fielding mask, hat, visor, balls, batting gloves) and other miscellaneous items help keep things organized. Some bags are bigger than others, such as catcher's bags that require more room to carry the catchers' gear.

Catchers' Gear - NAGS provides each team with catchers' gear with the exception of a catchers' glove. However, players may choose to purchase their own catchers' gear.

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