Boys Lacrosse Equipment Guide 2023
Buying lacrosse equipment for your player is an intimidating exercise, especially if this is your player is new to the sport. Over the years, parents have asked for the Club’s recommendations on buying sticks and protective equipment. We have gathered resources from the web and our experiences to provide you with this advice.
Equipment Needs in General
Boys 3rd grade and older will need the following to play: Helmet, Mouthguard, Shoulder Pads, Arm Pads, Gloves, Protective Cup, Cleats, and Crosse (Stick). Goalies will need different equipment. If your son is a goalie, contact your coach or the Club for buying ideas.
Boys K-2 will need a stick (crosse) and goggles. These will be provided by the club and returned at the end of the season. Because there is no stick checking and we use a soft ball, no helmet, shoulder pads, or arms pads are required.
There are two guides that may help you learn the basics. First, USA Lacrosse has developed this guide to help identify equipment needs. Second, the Club’s sponsors at Dick’s Sporting Goods have developed this guide. But be careful. The Dick’s site has not been updated for the 2022 season. There has been a rule change that requires all players to obtain shoulder pads that meet a certain safety standard protecting the chest area.
Where Should I Buy Equipment?
Online has the most options at the best prices. However, you will need to know sizes. Here is a guide to sizing equipment bought online.
While you won’t find the same deals, buying in person is probably the best option since you get to size it there. Locally, you can purchase equipment at Dicks. However, you will likely find a better selection by traveling to lacrosse stores in Lancaster, Timonium, Paoli or Frederick.
What Specifically Should I Buy?
The choices appear endless. There is high end equipment that professionals and college players use, entry level equipment for those trying the sport for the first time, and everything in between. There are companies that cater to budget-minded shoppers and others that produce equipment with high-end technology.
At the youth level, the high-end technology is essentially useless. That does not mean all equipment and sticks are equal.
1. First Time Players.
Protective Gear: If your son is trying lacrosse for the first time and has no equipment whatsoever, I would suggest purchasing a “starter set.” These sets bundle items together to keep the price down. For 1-4th graders, I would suggest these:
· Maverik Charger EKG Youth Starter Set 4-Piece (Cascade CS-R) - No Stick | Lacrosse Unlimited
· STX Stallion 75 Lacrosse Starter Kit - Gloves, Shoulder Pads, Arm Pads - SportStop.com
These sets are affordable and have everything you will need through but a mouthpiece, cleats, and a protective cup. However, I would not recommend these for older players. As players get stronger, more protection is needed.
For the 5-8 grade level, starter kits do not come with a helmet because head size varies. A good starter set without the helmet can be found here:
· Maverik MX 2020 Starter Package | Lacrosse Starter Packages | Maverik Lacrosse | ASClacrosse.com |
For helmets, see below.
Crosse (Sticks): If your son is a new player, we will likely be able to provide you with a crosse for the first season at no cost. However, we ask that you return the crosse at the end of the season.
If you would like to purchase your own, the best option for grades K-4 is the String King Jr. However, this crosse is not legal from the U12 level, so you may only have use of it for a couple years. For players grades 5-8, we recommend the String King Intermediate 2. We get a 20% discount on String King products, so let us know if you are interested in purchasing one of these.
2. Experienced Players
Should Pads: Besides Goalies, pretty much every player will need new shoulder pads this year. Some may have bought pads last year that meet the standards, but it is unlikely. You will know if it meets the standards by looking for a logo stating it meets the NOCSAE standard. Otherwise, here is a list of pretty much all the options for the 2022 season.
Helmets: Helmets are the most expensive piece of equipment and there really are not budget options. You can purchase helmets online using the sizing chart linked above. However, we would advise purchasing at Dicks or the other stores mentioned above so you can ensure you have the right size.
Gloves and Arm Pads: As long as they fit, you can’t go wrong. There is no need to spend hundreds of dollars on gloves and arm pads so long as they fit and provide protection. I recommend going to the store and trying them on before purchasing.
Crosse (Sticks): There are so many options when it comes to buying a lacrosse stick. Many options are simply not up to the job. However, there are good options for every budget.
· Top Pick: The best option for the money on the market is the String King Intermediate 2. You can get this crosse for offensive players or defense. It should also be available at Dicks.
· Other options:
o Budget (under $100):
Midfield/Attack: Maverik Critik Complete Attack Lacrosse Stick | SportStop.com - SportStop.com;
Epoch iD Vision Complete Attack Lacrosse Stick | SportStop.com - SportStop.com
Defense: STX Men's Proton U on Hammer 7000 Complete Defense Lacrosse Stick | DICK'S Sporting Goods (dickssportinggoods.com)
Also, it is a good idea to check out SidelineSwap for slightly used equipment.
o Intermediate ($100-$150):
Attack/Mid-field: Switchback Complete Stick » Powell Lacrosse Sticks
East Coast Dyes Men's Bravo 1 ELITE Complete Lacrosse Stick | DICK'S Sporting Goods (dickssportinggoods.com)
Defense: Switchback Defense Complete Stick » Powell Lacrosse Sticks
Nike Men's Vapor 2.0 on Vandal Defense Lacrosse Stick | DICK'S Sporting Goods (dickssportinggoods.com)
Bargain mix and match option. You can find high-end lacrosse heads and shafts online that are one or two models behind the latest technology for really good prices. For example, for the offensive player, this head and this shaft were once the best on the market and are now selling for a fraction of their original price. For the defensive player, combining this head with this shaft is a great option for the price. For both, you will just need to find someone to string it.
o Elite (Over $150):
As stated earlier, elite level lacrosse equipment is not needed at the youth level. For sticks, the difference between the intermediate sticks and elite sticks won’t be noticeable until boys are in high school and shooting the ball 80 mph.
However, if you are in the market for elite lacrosse sticks, there is no better place in the country than Stylin Strings in York. They have elite sticks in stock and they will custom string and dye any stick.
Also, check out SidelineSwap for slightly used elite sticks.
We are here to help. If you have any questions or would like personal advice about purchasing equipment, feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.