How And Where To Buy Cheap Hockey Equipment
If you're looking to buy cheap hockey equipment, a good idea would be to strategize your approach rather than go shopping without a plan. While this is good advice for buying hockey equipment, it can be applied to nearly every purchase. An organized approach when buying hockey equipment can save you a lot of long-term effort, short-term cash and a whole lot of time in the process. So what's involved in formulating a plan â€“ extensive analysis or gut feeling? Well, it's a mix of both as you we'll soon see.
Take An Inventory as a Cash-Saving Measure
Probably the first step is to check the condition of your equipment and make a full list of what you have and what shape it's in. Often, once you've done this you'll realize that you don't have to get a full set after all - maybe your helmet's in pretty good shape and will keep your brains in place for a couple seasons yet; possibly your inline skates just need a new set of wheels; it might be that your kneepads aren't all that worn out. Whatever the case may be, equipment that you can use for one more season will save you that many more dollars. This is just the first step. The next is to take your list and go look for options.
Getting to the Inner Circle
To buy cheap hockey equipment you need to be constantly on the lookout for great deals. Players at your local club are often good resources for trading equipment. Make friends with them and with the instructor, and wait for tidbits about cheap hockey equipment that they may either have, know of, or know where to find.
Offline and Online Opportunities
You could also print out some flyers advertising your specific needs and see what bites. A simple flyer can either be hand-done if you have the time, or prepared on a word processor if you're more technically inclined. Don't forget to mention sizes, makes (if you're looking for something specific), and of course, your name and number. Don't restrict your advertising coverage to your club alone â€“ try to hit all the various hockey hot spots that you know of, and some that you don't that you can find online â€“ there are tons of hockey forums that you could join and buy cheap hockey equipment from. One of the advantages of buying from a close-knit community is that trust that is pre-built into such a fraternity â€“ a good deal from a reliable place is a hard combination to find.
Timing is Everything
Speaking of online resources, you shouldn't skip the usual online shopping sites like eBay and Craigslist for some possible good deals, especially during the off-season. If you buy at the end of the season and up to about four to six months after, you're bound to find some unbelievable prices on relatively new equipment â€“ people shifting to warmer climes, or maybe first-timers who have decided that hockey is a sport that they'd rather watch than play.
Where Can I Buy Cheap Hockey Equipment on Sale?
Sports Authority: One of the largest sporting goods retailers in the United States, Sports Authority has over 450 locations in the mainland US as well as an online store. When purchasing online, they offer $0.99 shipping on most hockey products, a great perk if you're not close to a sporting goods store or prefer shopping online. Sports Authority doesn't specialize in hockey, stocking equipment for most major team and individual sports. Their gear is economically priced, and you should be able to get a full set of hockey equipment, including sticks, mouth guards, and skates, in addition to all the pads you need, for around $450. Sports Authority has a good reputation for safety, so don't mistake the low price tags for low quality. Their equipment will make playing hockey as safe as a high speed, full contact sport can be.
Bauer Hockey: Bauer was the leading name in hockey equipment for much of the mid 1900's. Their equipment has always been preferred by professionals as they remain on the cutting edge of technology. They deal only with the sport of hockey, so their entire business is highly specialized with regard to the sport. Bauer equipment has always offered the most advanced level of performance and safety technology. While you could spend a small fortune on their top of the line hockey gear, they do have products that span the entire economic spectrum. If you strictly with Bauer, you should still be able to find a full compliment of hockey equipment for under $600.
CCM Sports/The Hockey Company: The Hockey Company is the branch of CCM that is responsible for hockey equipment (though they use the familiar CCM logo on their gear). They started manufacturing hockey gear in 1905 and have competed with Bauer for a long time for the top spot for hockey equipment manufacturers. Like Bauer, they offer equipment across a wide price range, so there will be something within your financial range. Neither company really has a definitive edge over the other, so check both out and see what you prefer.
Summarizing the Approach
The key points to remember when you want to buy cheap hockey equipment are: Getting organized, getting a plan, keeping your eyes and ears open, and just getting out there to talk to people who are involved in the game. If you're in the fray, you get to play â€“ that's the rule of thumb in this or any other game. So remember that a well-prepared plan matched to an always-on radar and a willingness to be out there are the magic ingredients for a great deal when you want to buy cheap hockey equipment. And if you feel that this is a little overkill just to get some sports gear, try it without and see for yourself.