A list of our most frequently asked questions. If you can’t find what you’re looking for please reach out to us on social media or email the Directors
- WHERE IN LONDON ARE YOU BASED?
- WHEN ARE GAMES PLAYED?
- CAN I PLAY WITH MY FRIENDS OR PARTNER?
- DO I HAVE TO KNOW ANYBODY?
- DO I HAVE TO PLAY EVERY WEEK?
- CAN I PLAY MORE THAN ONCE A WEEK?
- DO I NEED TO HAVE PLAYED BEFORE?
- I HAVE PLAYED BEFORE AT A HIGH LEVEL, HOW CAN I GET INVOLVED?
- HOW CAN I GET INVOLVED?
Q: WHERE IN LONDON ARE YOU BASED?
A: Different teams are based at different venues across London, and teams play half of their games at their home venue. They will then play the other half of the games away from home. View the full list of venues used in the London Softball League.
Q: WHEN ARE GAMES PLAYED?
A: Games are played midweek evenings (Monday to Thursday), starting at 7pm. The season runs between April and August and each team chooses a designated night for all of their home fixtures. This means that your away games may not be the same night as your home fixtures.
Q: CAN I PLAY WITH MY FRIENDS OR PARTNER?
A: If a small group of you want to play together and you are of a similar standard, get in touch with the New Players officer. We will try and group friends together, but it cannot be guaranteed.
If you think you have enough players for a whole team, email the League Director. To set up a new team you will need approximately 6 or 7 people of each gender.
Q: DO I HAVE TO KNOW ANYBODY?
A: Absolutely not! Softball is an amazing way to make lifelong friends.
Q: DO I HAVE TO PLAY EVERY WEEK?
A: Teams will likely want a level of commitment from their players. Scheduling a two week summer holiday will certainly not be the end of the world, but if you work shifts for example, you might find that it easier to play in a more ad hoc way – as a ringer – rather than joining a team for the season. Get in touch with the New Players Officer for more information.
Q: CAN I PLAY MORE THAN ONCE A WEEK?
A: You are only allowed to be registered with one London Softball team. Many teams will do midweek practice sessions, and teams often take part in weekend LSL and other tournaments. When teams are short of players, they will look for fill-in players from lower divisions.
Q: DO I NEED TO HAVE PLAYED BEFORE?
A: Not at all. The London Softball League has teams at a variety of levels, from beginner to a very high standard. Teams will support you in playing safe and enjoyable softball at a level that is right for you.
Q: I HAVE PLAYED BEFORE AT A HIGH LEVEL, HOW CAN I GET INVOLVED?
A: If you have played at a high standard, either in Britain or abroad, then our Majors division is for you. Get in touch with the New Players Officer.
Q: WHAT EQUIPMENT DO I NEED?
A: Sensible shoes are the main item to bring. If the weather is fine, trainers will often suffice, but most players will wear studded shoes or cleats. Many teams will be able to lend a glove, although once you get into it, it will become an important possession in your life! Some players may bring their own bat to games, but it must meet ASA standards if used.
Q: DO YOU PLAY IN THE RAIN?
A: Yes! The English weather is unpredictable, and the season is short, so unless conditions are unsafe, play goes on. Bring a spare set of clothes to change into after the game.
Q: DO YOU HAVE CHANGING FACILITIES AT THE PITCHES?
A: Unfortunately, not all venues have changing or toilet facilities. However, all teams have relationships with nearby pubs, who will usually let you change there.
You can check in advance whether a venue has changing/toilet facilities by viewing it from our full list of venues.
Q: WHY DON’T YOU PLAY ALL YEAR ROUND?
A: The London Softball League is a midweek competition, and the light is the main obstacle to play. The light becomes satisfactory for outdoor play between April and August.
Q: DO YOU NEED TO BE REALLY FIT TO PLAY?
A: Softball is a sport for all shapes and sizes. It is a game that involves sprinting, and explosive movements, so a certain baseline of fitness is required to play safely. But the bar is quite low…
Q: DO I HAVE TO DRINK ALCOHOL?
A: No! Softball is a very social sport and both teams usually stay around for a chat and a drink or meal after the game. However, drinking alcohol is absolutely not mandatory!
Q: ARE YOU LGBT+ FRIENDLY?
A: We certainly are. We have a predominantly LGBT+ club called the Raiders with 5 teams. However, LGBT+ players are welcome on any team in the league. Softball in the UK has a long history of being a welcoming and inclusive sport for members of the LGBT+ community, and this is supported by a survey carried out by BaseballSoftballUK in 2016, which suggested that 14% of softball players identify as LGBT+, compared to roughly 8% of the population as a whole.