How to Wash Volleyball Knee Pads: 2 Proven Methods

How to wash Volleyball Knee Pads

Volleyball knee pads are essential for staying agile, being safe, and performing best on the court.

However, it is common that after intense practices and lengthy matches, they collect dirt, become sweaty, and sometimes have an unbearable smell.

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Now, the main question arises here, “How to wash volleyball knee pads?“.

Proper care and cleaning of your knee pads preserve their condition and enhance their durability.

Quick Answer: To wash volleyball knee pads, you have two options: a washing machine or handwashing. For best results, use cold water and mild detergent.

If using a machine, select a slower speed cycle. Avoid using a dryer.

In this guide, I’ll talk about how to clean knee pads effectively, remove any odors, and offer advice on whether using a dryer is a good idea.

Can You Wash Volleyball Knee Pads? (Things to Keep in Mind)

Yes, you can definitely wash volleyball knee pads.

Properly cleaning them is essential for maintaining hygiene and extending their lifespan.

Here’s what you need to keep in mind when washing them.

1) Water Temperature

Use water at a lower temperature when washing knee pads, either by hand or in a washing machine.

The reason is that hot water can harm both the padding and the fabric of the knee pads.

So, it’s recommended to use cold water for the washing.

2) Mild Detergent

While washing knee pads, keep in mind to avoid bleach or harsh chemicals, as they can damage the material and fade the color.

Look for a mild detergent that is gentle on fabrics.

3) Slower Speed Cycle

If you are using a washing machine, select a slower-speed cycle to minimize the wear and tear of your knee pads.

Putting the pads in a laundry bag or pillowcase is better for better protection during the wash.

4) Material

Different knee pads may be made of various materials, such as neoprene, foam, or gel.

While the cleaning process generally remains the same, some materials may require more delicate handling.

Brands, like Nike, etc., may have specific guidelines for washing and maintenance of knee pads.

By following them, you can keep them in good condition and maintain their quality.

So, the pro tip is to read the manufacturer’s care instructions first before washing.

How to Clean Volleyball Knee Pads?

Cleaning the knee pads is one of the most essential steps for maintaining their hygiene.

There are two primary methods for this purpose:

  • Using a washing machine
  • Washing them by hands

Let me elaborate on each method as step-by-step instructions.

1) Using a Washing Machine

If you prefer to clean your volleyball knee pads using a washing machine, follow these steps:

  1. Before starting, ensure that there is no loose dirt on the knee pads.
  2. Put them inside a laundry bag or a pillowcase to protect them from damage.
  3. Throw in a few towels or similar items to balance the load and prevent your knee pads from getting tossed.
  4. Use cold water and avoid using bleach. 
  5. Select the laundry detergent that doesn’t have any harsh chemicals.
  6. In case of deep stink, add white vinegar to give a touch of good fragrance.
  7. Choose a slower speed cycle for the washing machine to avoid any tear on the knee pads.
  8. After the wash, remove your knee pads from the bag and let them air dry.

2) Washing Knee Pads by Hands

If you prefer traditional handwashing, follow the below-mentioned simple steps:

  1. Fill a sink or basin with cold water.
  2. Add a small quantity of mild detergent.
  3. Place your dirty knee pads in the soapy water and gently rub them.
  4. You can use a soft brush or cloth to eliminate any stubborn dirt.
  5. Rinse the knee pads thoroughly with cold water until the detergent is removed.
  6. Gently press the knee pads to remove excess water.
  7. Now, place your knee pads on a fresh towel and let them thoroughly air dry.
  8. Avoid exposing them to direct sunlight, as it can cause damage such as fading of colours, weakening of fabric, etc.

How often Should I Wash my Knee Pads?

The frequency of washing the knee pads depends on how often you use them and how much you get dirty.

Generally, if you play volleyball regularly and your knee pads get dirty after each session, it is better to wash them at least once a week.

On the other hand, if you are an occasional volleyball player, don’t worry about washing them frequently.

In that case, washing them once a month would be perfect.

Can you put Volleyball Knee Pads in the Dryer?

No, you should not put your volleyball knee pads in the dryer.

It could be a really bad idea because dryers generate extreme heat.

That high temperature can harm the cushioning in your knee pads.

Also, the heat can affect the elastic bands or straps, and they may lose elasticity.

Washing Knee pads in dryers is not recommended

Another reason is that dryers can sometimes lock in odors rather than eliminate them.

If your knee pads smell from sweat, a dryer can make the odor stick to them even more.

And you can’t miss out on the energy consumption aspect of dryers.

Using dryers for small items like knee pads is never an energy-efficient idea.


Worth Reading: To get the most out of your knee pads, you want a secure fit, the right level of padding, and a design that works for your position. My breakdown of the best volleyball knee pads can help you make the perfect choice for your game.

How to Get the Smell out of Volleyball Knee Pads?

I know it has happened to everyone playing volleyball.

Those trusty volleyball knee pads you wear in countless games develop an unpleasant odor over time.

Bad knee pads smell

It’s a common issue, but don’t worry!

You can get back to their fresh and odor-free state with some extra care and attention.

I am listing down some methods to help you eliminate that unbearable smell from your knee pads.

  • After each volleyball game, hang your knee pads in a well-ventilated area so the air can work magic to reduce that bad smell.
  • Wash them regularly to remove the sweat and bacteria, which are the main reasons behind that unwanted odor.
  • Mix water and vinegar in a spray bottle, spray your knee pads, add baking soda, let it sit overnight, then let them air dry. Result: fresh, odor-free knee pads.
  • Another effective method is to seal your pads in a plastic bag and freeze them overnight. The extreme cold works wonders in neutralizing odors.


Taking care of volleyball knee pads not only ensures good hygiene but also increases their durability and performance.

Remember the key steps, whether using a washing machine or handwashing: cold water, mild detergent, and avoiding the dryer.

By following these easy instructions and tricks to tackle bad odor, you can keep your knee pads fresh and clean.

Protecting Your Knees, One Wash at a Time!

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