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Gloves to improve your game

Hands that froze, chafed and bled will be safe from harm, and sportsmen will better their performance as stretch and leather combine in sporting handwear

In sport a firm grip goes hand in hand with a good working glove, and some 105 million American sportsmen need a glove to be more than just something to keep their hands warm. A proper glove will give traction for more control and protection without loss of sensitivity. A shooting glove, for instance, must have minimum finger seams and bulk for ready trigger response and leather palms for a firm grip, and working sailors need more than makeshift improvisations to protect their hands from burns, bruises and abrasions while handling a slippery wet sheet.

There is good news for these sportsmen, and many more, in the display of handwear on the opposite page. Not only hunters and sailors but also bowlers, skiers, drivers, golfers and archery enthusiasts have found a friend in the American Astral glove company, which has come up with a new concept in active-sport gloves. Named Sportsmaster, they combine Hytron stretch-nylon insets with leather to insure snug fit with sufficient "give" for retraction and expansion in active sport. Furthermore, there is one size for men and another for women. Reading clockwise and by number (left), these are some of the styles available:

1) The men's driving glove has hidden stretch forchettes between the crocheted cotton back and ventilated mocha suede palm ($9). 2) The ski glove is treated to be soft, tacky (an adhesive quality achieved in tanning) and waterproof ($10). 3) The sturdy hunting glove is made of degrained pigskin, thin enough to work easily on the trigger of a rifle yet thick enough for warmth, and with deerskin strips to provide strength where wear will be hardest ($10). 4) For golfers, soft Cabretta leather is combined with a ventilated Hytron back to make a lightweight, cool, half-finger glove ($2). 5) For sailors who haven't acquired protective calluses, there is a glove made of goatskin that will give plenty of traction on a wet line. The stretch insets and snap closing insure snug fit ($10). 6) The zipper on the women's driving glove facilitates putting it on and removing it quickly ($7.50). 7) Stretch forchettes and shirring on this golf glove for women make it fit like a second skin ($4). 8) The bowlers' dilemma is to keep the ball from slipping off the fingers rather than leaving with enough friction for a good lift and hook. The women's glove is made of tough featherweight leather tanned for tackiness and combined with Hytron. Made for the right and left hand ($4). 9) The archery glove is constructed to protect the fingers for a full draw on the bowstring. The stiff seamless hide tips permit a smooth release ($2). All the gloves are available at the following stores: Saks Fifth Ave., New York; Joseph Home, Pittsburgh; Bon Marche, Seattle.