Lacrosse is a fast-paced sport that requires skill, agility, and the right equipment. While athleticism and skill are keys to being good at any sport, the equipment can be equally as important. Sure, in some cases having the best bat or the best glove aren’t going to make you that much better of a player, but having the correct stick for your body or for your position, will help elevate your game to the next level.
In lacrosse there are specific sticks for specific positions. It’s important to make sure that you have the right stick for your position to ensure that you’re able to properly play that position in a way that will help benefit your team. You don’t need the most expensive equipment to play the game, but you should always have the correct equipment.
What are the Different Types of Lacrosse Sticks?
Technically speaking there are three different types of lacrosse sticks you should be aware of. These different types of sticks are specific to the position that you’re playing on the field.
Lacrosse Stick Length
Stick length is the first thing that you want to look at when purchasing a stick. The stick length will correspond to the position you’re playing on the field. By adhering to the lengths outlined below, you’ll get the best mobility and comfort for your position.
- Attackers and midfielders should be using a shorter stick measuring between 40 and 42 inches.
- Defensive and midfield players should be using a longer stick measuring between 52 and 72 inches.
- A goalie’s stick shaft should measure between 40 and 72 inches based on your personal preference.
If you’re playing youth leagues and not in a more competitive league, then you should opt for a stick length that is the most comfortable for the player. Obviously you don’t want the stick to be too short or too long, but finding a nice comfortable middle ground where you can maneuver the stick while handling the ball is key.
Lacrosse Stick Shaft Material
Lacrosse sticks can be made from a variety of materials and in most cases the material you choose comes down to personal preference.
Some of the materials are going to be lighter than others, while others are going to be stronger. The most important thing to consider when choosing the material for the shaft is to make sure you are comfortable handling it.
Just because someone tells you that attackers should have a certain material while defensive players should have a different one, doesn’t mean they are right. You want a strong stick, but you also want one that you’re comfortable handling and that isn’t too heavy for you to move around with.
Titanium, scandium, aluminum alloy, and composite are the typical materials you will find lacrosse stick shafts being made out of. Titanium shafts are going to be the strongest, while aluminum will be the lightest. If you’re looking for a nice combination of both strong and lightweight, we would suggest a scandium shaft.
Lacrosse Stick Head
When it comes to the stick head, which is the part of the stick where the ball is caught, cradled, and thrown from, the goalie is the only position that is going to have a different size.
The head of a goalie lacrosse stick is going to be much larger than that of an attacker or a defenseman. A typical attacker or defensive player has a stick head of between 6 and 10 inches, while a goalie’s stick head is between 10 and 12 inches.
This gives the goalie more surface area to work with when trying to prevent a goal.
In addition to having a wider head, the goalie stick is also allowed to have a deeper pocket than those of an attacker or a defensive player.
The goalie pocket can be between 2-3 balls deep, while the other players on the field must have a pocket depth of one ball.
Choosing the Right Lacrosse Stick
Goalies are the exception when it comes to stick head width and depth, but outside of that, it’s all about comfort, mobility, and personal preference.
There are some guidelines and restrictions that we’ve mentioned above, but you should be choosing a lacrosse stick that is comfortable and feels good in your hands. It should be strong, but also light enough that you can maneuver with ease. You don’t want the stick weighing you down as you’re running up and down the field.
Refer to the length guidelines when deciding which stick to buy and as long as you’re within the general length guidelines for your position, find whichever stick feels the best to you. Just because a friend of yours or a teammate has a different size stick, or a stick made of a different material, doesn’t mean that it’s going to be the best stick for you.
In addition to that, just because a stick is a different brand or more expensive, also doesn’t mean that it will make you a better player or increase your ball handling ability. A more experienced, more well versed player, will be able to beat a novice with whatever stick you give them. So while the equipment is important in terms of giving you the best fit for your play style and build, it’s not going to make you any better of a player, that’s what practice is for.