Pinky protection

We take a look at some of the many sailing gloves on the market
Sailing gloves are traditionally a love them or hate them item. There have always been and will always be those who choose not to wear gloves. However, we feel gloves form a vital part of the sailors kit and can, in many respects improve performance by a significant margin. There are many different styles of glove on the market but in essence there are two main types. Firstly you have summer gloves designed for flexibility and grip predominantly and offer little additional warmth. Then there are winter gloves designed with warmth in mind as well as flexibility and grip. The most important thing we discovered when talking to sailors was the amount of grip a pair of gloves has. Many feel this is simply a case of the more grip the better as this allows you to expend less energy holding onto ropes. However, there are those who say if gloves are too grippy they may get in the way of sailing, not allowing a tiller extension to slip through your fingers for example. The other big debate seems to be over fingered or finger-less. Here some say that gloves without fingers are best as they leave you the ability to tie ropes and do up shackles. Others say that if you have good preparation then this should not be needed and full fingers offer better protection. Finally there are some who go for a halfway house and use gloves with three full fingers and a short thumb and index finger. In truth which gloves you use is all about preference, your style of sailing and what position you sail in. A 49er helm may well wear gloves that are not too grippy but are warm as they don’t have too many ropes to pull. The same person crewing a 49er