Essential Lacrosse Equipment
No matter if you’re just starting out or you’ve been playing since you were a child, everyone still needs to stock up on essential lacrosse equipment to play the game.
This article will show you everything you’ll need, from vital protective equipment down to the lacrosse shorts and mouthpiece, so you’ll be stepping onto the field in no time.
Here are the 5 things you need to play lacrosse.
First and foremost, if you are going to play lacrosse you need the crosse ie a lacrosse stick. Whenever you think of lacrosse, this is the first thing that comes to mind.
Your lacrosse stick will vary in length depending on the position you play.
Goalies have longer lacrosse sticks, ranging from 40” - 72”, defensive players’ sticks are longer still, ranging from 52” - 72”, while midfield and attacking players have short lacrosse sticks at 40” - 42”.
The size of the crosse’s head also changes based on position. Goalie lacrosse sticks can be between 10” - 12” wide but all outfield players must have lacrosse stick heads between 6.5” - 10” wide.
If the top surface of a lacrosse ball, when placed in the head of the crosse, is below the bottom edge of the side wall, the pocket is not eligible for use.
If you are a more experienced lacrosse player, you may want to customise your stick. Create a custom-made pocket for your stick with a mesh kit and fix it to a crosse head of your choice.
Because lacrosse is played on grass, you need cleats, preferably lightweight, to keep your grip and cut across the field as quickly as possible. Invest in moulded lacrosse cleats, or those with a spikeless design, for optimal performance.
Most lacrosse players wear mid-level cleats, similarly to football players, as they also aid with movement. The lower the cut, the quicker you’ll be.
For experienced lacrosse players, customise your cleats’ design based on your position and/or style of play.
The job of a defender is to be rock solid and concede as little to no goals as possible, meaning that you could replicate that with a more conservative style.
On the other hand, attackers play with more flair and urgency so emphasise this with cleats that are little more flashy. If you combine them with some crazy lacrosse shorts, you’ll definitely stand out from the rest!
Lacrosse Protective Gear
Lacrosse protective gear is a must-have since it is a contact sport. There’s a lot to cover here.
Firstly, you need a helmet. They come equipped with a face mask, a chin pad and a chin strap fastened to all four hookups. Helmets must be worn at all times during play. When you’re selecting a helmet, ensure that it is certified by the National Operating Committee on Standards of Athletic Equipment (NOCSE).
You must also have a highly visible mouthguard to play lacrosse. This is because they help prevent concussions. Choose a mouthpiece that fits well, allows you to breathe comfortably and enables you to communicate with your teammates.
Next, acquire some shoulder pads. Like the lacrosse stick, these will vary depending on your position. Attacking players need a lot of shoulder coverage, midfielders need slightly less to enable them a full range of motion during play, while defenders need the least amount of protection of all.
Elbow, arm and hand protection are also important. Guards provide the most protection, meaning they are best suited for attackers and midfielders, while pads enable better movement and are most appropriate for defenders.
Gloves will then also protect your hands from injury. You need gloves that fit your hands less than a half inch from the tip of the fingers. If you need it, get larger cuffs to protect your wrists, while goalie gloves offer extra thumb protection. The quality of the glove is determined by its palm material.
Finally, you may wish to consider using rib and kidney pads. While these are not required to be worn during a game, they will shield against the more sensitive areas in contact.
It’s just as important to stock up on a season’s worth of lacrosse apparel and accessories. For practice, you’re going to need the basics like t-shirts, custom lacrosse shorts and lots and lots of socks!
As far as in-game apparel is concerned, pick up a few pairs of compression lacrosse shorts, as well as plenty of base layer clothing. It wouldn’t hurt to get a few hoodies for the winter either.
Now for the accessories. You are going to need a bag to store everything in. Fill it up with a spare mesh kit for your stick and some tape. It may be worth throwing a spare mouthguard in there too.
Lacrosse Goalie Gear
Goalies need a few extra pieces of equipment compared to the outfield players.
While you can choose to use the same helmet worn at other positions, goalies must attach a throat guard for added protection. You must also have an added chest protector to guard your body against high-speed shots, along with special protective goalie pants that are worn underneath a pair of comfortable lacrosse shorts.
Some goalies also like to wear shin guards as they can prevent painful bruises on your lower legs. For beginners, invest in thicker shin guards. Getting hit in the leg by a lacrosse ball hurts, especially as a goalie when it may happen a lot!
You may also want to go a step further and protect your knees with some kneepads. However, these should remain lightweight so that they can still bend keep you moving.
Finally, every goalie needs a pair of goalie gloves. They have additional padding at the thumb and forefinger compared to outfield gloves.
You’re All Set
Once you have the stick, cleats, protection, cool lacrosse shorts and stack of accessories, you’re ready to go! It doesn’t matter if you’re at school, trying out for varsity, or launching a career in the pros, having the right equipment will get you where you want to be.