If you plan on becoming a serious squash player, you will need a bag. There is no escape from this reality. Even for the the casual player, a squash bag makes it convenient to carry your gear to your club or tournament venue. Because our most basic needs are a racket and shoes, it gets annoying to carry these large odd shaped items in your hands or a plastic bag. Not only does it look weird, it also means you have nowhere to keep your clothes, keys, phone, wallet, water bottle, etc.
This post talks about what to keep in your squash bag.
Types of Squash bags
There are two main kinds of racket bags you can use for your daily squash:
- A racket bag shaped to hold multiple rackets; and
- a backpack that keeps your racket secure and had space for your shoes and personal belongings.
I personally prefer the purpose built tennis or squash racket bags that can hold multiple rackets, have a separate shoe compartment, and have space for clothes and other items. I also do not prefer the backpack style bags because the handle of the racket is left exposed to rain.
All major squash companies such as tecnifibre, head, wilson, babolat, dunlop, prince, salming, harrow, and black knight make such bags and sell them at reasonable prices.
What to put in your squash bag
The first thing that goes into your squash bag is your squash racket. As a principle, you should have multiple rackets as you never know when you might break a string or a grip gets too slippery to play with. Ideally as a pro squash player you should have at least two of the same rackets. There is nothing wrong with keeping more than two rackets with you, especially for tournaments.
Racket Bag Sizes
Racket bags come in different sizes defined by the number of rackets they can store. Bags are usually designed to hold 3, 6 or 12 rackets. Click here to learn about the best squash racket.
In my experience, 3 racket bags are not great because that is essentially all they can carry. There is no separate compartment for shoes and all the space is occupied by your rackets and smaller items. Due to its small size. there isn’t much sectioning within the bag to separate your sportswear from your casual wear. Therefore, such bags are only good for carrying rackets to a club where all your other stuff such as shoes and clothes are stored in a locker.
Compared to 3 racket bags, 6 racket bags are much more practical even if you do not have six rackets. This is because they usually come with a slot for your shoes and have sections for storing different items.
12 racket bags are also good, especially if you are a coach or provide racket stringing services at your club. Even if you don’t have 12 rackets to carry, there is no harm is having an extra spacious bag. This is particularly useful for out-station tournaments.
Of course you need balls. A squash bag is a great way to hold on to your balls and prevent them from getting lost. Serious players tend to keep lots of balls with them since they burst all the time. Hence, due to the inconvenience of having your squash balls roll out of your racket jackets or whatever makeshift bag you are using, its preferable to keep them zipped away in your squash bag. Learn about the different kinds of squash balls and how they can help improve your game.
Grips are extremely handy, but we never really have them when needed. Most of us tend to buy a new grip only when our current grip gets worn out. This causes us to go to a store every time. Its best to buy 3 or 10 grips, put them in your bag, and forget about them until needed. Learn about the best squash grips.
If you opted for a 6 or 12 racket bag, then you will have a compartment for your shoes and wont have to carry shoes in one hand and everything else in the other. The same compartment can be used to store your off-court shoes while you are playing. These compartments are usually ventilated and allow your shoes to dry while in there. However, you should still just keep them outside when not in use. What are the best squash shoes?
A jump rope is an essential item for all squash players. Skipping is one of the best warm up routines as it raises your heart rate and activates your calf muscles. If you have a squash bag, this small item would hardly take any space and always be available to you. Learn about this warm up routine for a squash match.
Squash Glasses / Safety Goggles
Regardless of your playing level, you should always own a pair of eye protection because you never know what kind of partner you might end up playing with. There is always someone at a club who has a reputation for whacking their opponent with the ball. This is also true for newer players who frame a lot of shots and can hit your eye with high degrees of accuracy.
Energy Bars are a great way to replenish your calories before, between, and after games. What better place to keep them than in your muli-compartment squash bag.
A squash bag has plenty of room to keep your shorts, t-shirts, socks, and towels organized and secure. One should always have an extra dry shirt and pair of socks when training. When changed into your squash clothes, the bag can store your regular casual wear. What kind of clothes should you wear for squash?
Notebook / Diary
For those pros who like to take notes on their squash, a notebook is useful item to keep in your bag. Notebook are good for jotting down ideas on how to improve an element of your game, or how a match went, what kind of player your opponent is etc. This book will stay in your bag all the time and be studied when you are at your tournament or training venue.
Loose and useful items such as wristbands, sweatbands, crash tape, strings, supports, K-tape, and water bottles all have a place in your squash bag. These items are always needed but a nuisance to carry around, especially when you think you wont need them. That’s why you didn’t bring them. But now you need them. If you had a squash bag, you would not be having this problem.
Besides all the squash stuff, we need a place to put our phone, keys, wallet, watch, glasses, sunglasses, dentures, crutches, headphones, telescope, weapons, blankets, guitars, and all sorts of items that we routinely carry around with us. It is common practice to keep these items on the spectator benches outside the court or near the tin inside the court. This is neither a secure nor sophisticated way of handling your belongings. Some well made squash bags have purpose built compartments for items like these.
In conclusion: Get a squash bag
Otherwise you would have shoes in one hand, a racket in the other, balls in your pocket, clothes on your shoulder, and be tripping over your jump rope on the way to the court.