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LAX Stick Tips: The Smart Buy

by Paul Thomas, Director | Head Coach

Each season, I’m repeatedly asked about the best way to purchase a lacrosse stick – especially for new players. The answer comes in two words: custom stringing.

Even though it seems logical (and often economical) to buy a stick and head together, many pre-fabricated lacrosse sticks end up resembling tennis rackets with flat heads that have no “pocket” for ball hold. And the reality is, the pocket is a HUGE key to great play as it literally holds the ball and is critically important to how the ball leaves the stick when throwing. A well-strung head also helps a player avoid falling into bad throwing habits (such as pushing the ball with his top hand and not engaging his bottom hand or raising his arm to throw).

Instead, put a little more money into a head that is custom strung. We have preferences and specifics on optimum head construction for boys new to the sport…and as they grow and develop their game. We also have a preferred vendor, Play It Again Sports (Buckhead/Roswell Road), because the staff there knows how to string heads exactly like we want them; a mid to low pocket, with little to no whip. Ask for new mesh (preferably from String King….we like the 2x or 3x) and be sure to steer away from colored mesh because as cool as it looks, it doesn’t break in the same as the all-white mesh; nor does it hold its consistency as well. If your player demands some individuality, get funky with shooting strings and sidewalls with color.

However if you prefer a more economical option, the only pre-fab sticks we recommend are by String King and Play It Again Sports stocks these, too.

As far as the shaft…at this stage, this is where you can save some money. Buy a used shaft or purchase a new aluminum alloy shaft (typically ranges between $20 and $30).

During your first practices, our coaches will cut the shaft (with a hack saw) to suit your player’s size, as well as tape them for grip (or show you how) on the fields during your first practices.

See you out there with a stick that’ll work as hard as he does.