Where to find kids sports accessories

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sports gear and equipment
You can't play if you don't have the right accessories
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Knowing where to find kids sports accessories is easy with these shopping tips

Kids and sports go together like chocolate and milk. Both boys and girls now have plenty of opportunities to get involved in sports, whether it's through school, church, neighborhood fitness centers or clubs.

Even if they don't play a particular sport, kids still like to have accessories promoting their favorite professional, college or school teams. All of those team accessories and equipment can put a strain on any budget, and finding just the right stuff can be a challenge. Knowing where to find kids sports equipment can save you money and keep your family fit and happy.

Sporting goods stores, both brick-and-mortar and online, and the sporting goods sections of department stores are the obvious first choices for finding kids accessories. The stores and their web sites generally offer a huge selection of sports clothing, equipment, shoes and gear.

There are a number of ways to save money when shopping here. First, buy quality merchandise. The good stuff will last longer and you will save in the long run. Second, buy in quantities. If you see a good price on sweatshirts and socks, buy a few extras and put them away for when stuff gets worn or little brothers and sisters grow up and want to play too. It's always a good idea to buy balls, sticks and other playing equipment in bulk because they quickly get worm out, broken, hit out of the park or tossed in celebration. Third, watch for sales and bargains. Sales are often seasonal and you can pick up money-saving bargains on things like pro team gear after the season is over or after the team is out of the running for the playoffs.

If you can't find what you are looking for in stores, online auction sites and classified ad sites are a good source of both new and used accessories. Many of the auction sites buy store closeouts on out-of-season accessories or discontinued items and offer them at discount prices. Be sure to know what you're looking for because you may not be able to return the items.

Kids often get bored quickly with a sport, so stores that carry used sports equipment often have accessories that are barely worn. These are especially great places to find helmets, padding and other higher-priced accessories and they're always full of barely-used exercise equipment and gear. Pawn shops can also be a good source for kids sports accessories and equipment, but the selections may be limited. The same is true of thrift stores.

Another source that's often overlooked is other families and friends. The parents of kids who move up, grow up or give up sometimes have new or slightly used equipment they'd rather see put to good use than end up in the attic or the trash. It also pays to check with team coaches who often have extra equipment or know of people trying to get rid of theirs.

Shop for kids sports accessories and equipment wisely and you'll make your children happy and play an important part in the competition and fun of any sport they play or follow.

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