How to Choose Complete Lacrosse Sticks (2022)
Having the right lacrosse stick, or “crosse” in legal terms, is essential. There are many different lacrosse sticks on the market, and likewise, a lot to learn and play with in order to make an informed decision.
A complete lacrosse stick is made up of a shaft, a head, and a pocket. Finding the right fit for each component requires experimenting with what’s out there.
Factors in Choosing Lacrosse Sticks
- Material Quality
- Level of Experience
Lacrosse Sticks by Position
We dive deeper into lacrosse sticks used by different players in this blog. If you’re just starting to learn lacrosse, the main difference is the length of the shaft which essentially denotes if a player is on defense or attack. Defense players are called “long poles”; the overall length of their stick must fall between 70″-72″. Players on the offense, or “attack”, use sticks between 40″-42″. The head must fall between 10″-12″, and is included in the aforementioned legal lengths of a complete stick.
Goalies can use either a long or short shaft, but must use a goalie head with a different face shape. The rest of the guys are basically divided between attack and defense, but which kind of lacrosse sticks they use varies. Faceoff players are generally included with attack and use short shafts. A middie may use a long or a short stick, depending on which side of the game they play. A middie on defense is called a “long stick middie”.
Lacrosse Sticks by Experience
Beginners in lacrosse start with a short lacrosse stick because it’s easier to handle than a long pole, and better suited to the development of stick skills. This is extra important with kids because short sticks are safer, posing less risk to others and themselves.
At first, tight pockets aid in developing ball-handling skills. A fresh pocket will break in and eventually “bag out”. A beginner might discover they prefer a baggier pocket and learn to feel when their pocket needs attention.
Once players know their basics and find their home with the attack, defense, or somewhere in between, it’s time to pay attention to nuance. Players naturally gravitate to a preference in manufacturer as they practice with consistency.
Getting out of your comfort zone at this level may look like trying a totally different lacrosse stick from an unfamiliar manufacturer. Trading lacrosse sticks with one of the other guys on the team during practice is common for the sake of expanding general knowledge.
Once habits are solidified, a player is not likely to deviate from their comfort zone. After sticking by their setup for years, pros usually become sponsored by the manufacturer they rep on the field. Still, a lot of innovation happens in lacrosse equipment, and trying out what’s on the cutting edge is always worth a shot – even if it’s just for fun.
Complete Stick Cost
Major lacrosse stick manufacturers like Warrior, STX, Maverik, and Nike sell fully-assembled complete sticks, with factory-strung pockets in the head ready to play. Complete sticks “out-of-the-box” range from around $49.99 – $199.99. A complete lacrosse stick can have a decent sale price, and low cost should definitely be a priority for beginners. Whatever is on sale is a great starter stick – because don’t forget, these things break all the time.
As a player’s ability advances, they better individualize their complete lacrosse stick, assembling a custom build for a better sum from the whole of its parts.
Factory-strung pockets simply can’t withstand the game and will need to be replaced with a hand-strung pocket. A coach or fellow player might have stringing skills to share with the team, or stringing services like us are here to help guide any player to the best choice at the fairest price.