What are the parts of a lacrosse stick & why are they significant?
When a player looks at another player’s stick they are, in a way, looking into the other player’s soul. The style and type of the player who owns the stick can be seen from how the lacrosse stick is strung up, along with the type of stick. This article will discuss the anatomy of the stick, and the importance of keeping your stick up to par.
Your Lacrosse Stick actually says a lot about you,
- What kind of player you are
- How you throw
- How you shoot the ball
An Intro to Lacrosse Stick Parts
Starting from the top down, a Lacrosse Stick begins at the head. This is the plastic object that is attached to the top of the shaft. There are many variations of lacrosse heads for different positions made by different companies. Surprisingly, a defensive head is drastically different from an attack head, which we will illustrate in depth in a future article. If you are looking for a good head to start with for offense you can check out the STX Super Power, on the other hand, if you are a defensive player you can check out the STX X10. Both of these heads are utilized by pro players and are built to last.
Lacrosse Head Parts: Starting at the top of the Lacrosse Head
At the top of the Lacrosse Head, you will find the scoop. This is the curved, almost flat edge which plays a huge role in getting ground balls. Moving lower on the head you will find the sidewall. The holes in the sidewall are important for the stringing pattern of the head. The shape of the sidewall creates the overall structure of the head. The thickness of the sidewall is normally an indication of the position intended for the stick. We will also be covering an article on patterns soon, so be on the lookout!
Lacrosse Head Parts: The Sidewall of a Lacrosse Stick
Sidewalls that are far apart and make the face of the head very wide are for defense. The opposite thinner faces are intended for the offense. A thick sidewall is also common on defensive heads because it strengthens the lacrosse head so it won’t break when throwing checks. The thinner the plastic of the sidewall, the less weight in the head and shaving off weight allows for quicker offensive motions. You will find the throat of the head at bottom of the plastic object. This part connects the shaft to the lacrosse head and is really the foundation of the head. Some sticks have varied throats that allow for two screws, an insert into the shaft for added support or double-sided screws for no rattle.
Lacrosse Stick Anatomy: The Lacrosse Head
- The Channel (Also Illustrated by the red lines)
- This is the scoop of the lacrosse head where you attach the top of the mesh by utilizing a top string.
- These are lacrosse shooting strings which are usually made out of cotton or synthetic material.
- Sidewall which attaches the mesh to the sidewall holes with string.
- This is called the bottom string which is that last part you string.
- This is the throat of the lacrosse head which attaches the head to the shaft.
Lacrosse Shaft | The thing that attaches to your lacrosse head
The shaft of a lacrosse stick comes in multiple different materials but are usually composed of wood, carbon, and metal. While most shafts look very similar, not all were created equal. There are many different types of metals and other materials used to create the shaft that can highlight specific strengths of players. The lighter the shaft, the faster the movement; but, strength lasts and replacing shafts can be expensive.
Carbon shafts have the added benefit of increasing your shot by the flex of the material when force is put behind it. I would really only recommended one brand when it comes to carbon, which is Epoch Lacrosse, though their shafts can be on the pricier side. Wood can have flex like carbon and also be much much cheaper. It is much heavier though, but that can be a plus for building forearm strength. Wooden Lax and Burd Word Works both offer good shafts that won’t break the bank. Lastly, when it comes to the length of the lacrosse shaft it comes in three sizes which are:
What is the length of a lacrosse shaft?
- 30 Inches (Attack/Midfielder)
- 40 Inches (Goalie Shaft)
- 60 Inches (Defense)
Some might say it has a unique status similar to painting or sculpting. Mesh is the most used style in stringing. A piece of mesh is a piece of woven fibers that is meant to replicate traditional stringing. Mesh is premade so that you don’t need to spend as much time as adjusting traditional stringing. Traditional stringing involves much more complex tensioning and technique. New stringers should start with mesh and experiment with traditional because lacrosse mesh is simpler to string and maintain.
There are also many types of mesh that can also perform differently. Considering that you know what type of mesh will be best for you, and fit your style of play. Soft mesh, hard mesh, mesh with varied diamonds like ECD Vortex or 6 diamond mesh, wax mesh, performance mesh like StringKing, or even Hero Lacrosse’s Phenix and Channel Mesh can be options.
The difficult part is just finding what fits you. Once you find what is working you should stick with it, but still look at the new options coming out. There are always advances in stringing. This means patterns and materials. So keep a look out on our Instagram, we love to highlight the best that stringing has to offer.
Why does all of this matter?
Why does this matter? Do players constantly change their sticks? And why, do players spend hours fussing over their stringing? Because in Lacrosse you can completely make you stick your own. Much like how you can be whoever you want to be in life, your stick can be anything you want as well. As long as the stick fits you, make it whatever you need it to be. You don’t get to pick the height of the hoop in basketball. Can’t choose how long your reach is in football. You can’t decide the curve of your kick in soccer. But you can decide so much with your stick in Lacrosse, and that can change your play so much. So take advantage of that ability that you have to customize your stick and express yourself.