What To Do With All That Old Sports Equipment!

Asia Mape
In Equipment, Learn
By Asia Mape | January 5, 2018

What To Do With All That Old Sports Equipment!

 I have an almost brand new girls lacrosse starter set hanging in my garage. I bought it a few years ago (stick, bag and goggles), when I signed my then 10-year-old daughter up for lacrosse. She only played one season and never touched the gear again. A swim parka monogrammed with my other daughter’s name is stuffed in the back of her closet even though she quit competitive swimming more than 5 years ago. Do you have a closet or a spot in your garage that is an ode to all the sports your kid tried that didn’t quite pan out, a trip down memory lane of what didn’t quite stick? At one time or another each has had its place in your kid’s heart and deep inside your wallet. Even equipment from the sport they currently play yet have already outgrown can be difficult to get rid of. My ten-year-old has worn ten different pairs of soccer cleats and she’s only been playing soccer for 5 years. Every single shoe is still in our garage – with the good intention of passing them down to one of my friend’s kids. It’s estimated parents spend several billion dollars on sporting equipment each year. Yikes! Have you ever considered trying to get some of that money back?

Here’s a simple guide to kick-start 2018 by decluttering your garage and entire house while you make some money.

Step 1 – Find the items. Time: 30 minutes

Make this a family event. Have everyone take a big heavy trash bag and comb the entire house. Start in the bedroom, hit all the closets, playroom, family room, basement, the yard and most definitely the garage. Along the way grab everything you don’t currently use or haven’t used within the last year: old cleats and high tops, shin guards, baseball pants, facemasks, bats, tennis rackets, balls, scooters, skates, wetsuits, ANYTHING and EVERYTHING. Nothing is too big or too small and don’t forget about fitness equipment.

Step 2 – Sort & Clean. Time: 30 minutes

Used sporting goods stores like Play It Again Sports, will take a wide variety used and new equipment and gear; items that you will get the most money for are the big ticket items like batting practice machines, soccer goals, and treadmills. But call them first and ask what they will take. Every store has slightly different items they are looking for and slightly different rules in regards to what they will take. For example, we live in California, so surfboards are highly sought after.  The Top 10 MOST wanted items at the store we visited in Simi Valley are: Baseball gloves, bodyboards, longboards and surfboards, mountain bikes, soft surfboards, kettlebells, dumbbells, dirt bike boots, exercise bikes and rowing machines. Sort into three piles, and as you sort and assess, use a towel to wipe down any dirty or dusty items.

Pile 1 – Items that can be traded in for money and hold value.

Pile 2 –- Items that a used store didn’t need or won’t take that you can donate to charities that give back to underprivileged sports programs like Passback, Let’s Play It Forward or Leveling The Playing Field. Otherwise, drop it at Goodwill or try and sell on eBay (For example our three hover boards).

Pile 3 – Trash. Either it is broken, too beat up, or missing parts.

 Step 3 – Resell or Recycle. Time: 30 minutes + Drive time

Load all the piles into your car. Find your nearest Play It Again Sports or similar used sporting goods  store. (Go to Playitagainsports.com and type your zip code into “Find a store close to you”.) Bring Piles 1 & 2 and meet with the salesperson to see what they’re willing to buy back. This is a quick process, but bring the  kids because while the salesperson’s assessing your stuff, the kids can be looking around the store. There are a ton of cool things they might want or need and you get more money for store credit than you do for taking a check. Next stop, drop anything they didn’t buy back to the Salvation Army, local charity or take home and try to sell on ebay or swap.com. Third stop, a dumpster/recycle bin for whatever is left over.

We accomplished all of this in less than three hours and that was with lunch! We made $65 dollars and totally cleaned out our garage and parts of our house. It really wasn’t very difficult to do and it feels great to be organized and not buried under piles of equipment nobody uses anymore.

Sponsored by our partners at Play It Again Sports

The official sponsor of all those who play!



  1. Thanks for pointing me in the direction of where to sell back or donate equipment. Part of the reason I don’t de-clutter is because I don’t know what to do with the stuff. Plus, your 3 steps with how long it will take gave me a structure and a goal to shoot for. Great article. Plus, I loved the photos! I plan to forward this on to friends.


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