Outfitting a lacrosse player can be expensive and no one wants to be too vested in a sport their child is just trying for the first time. New players may want to read Girls Lacrosse Equipment Recommendations to get started. If your daughter has played for a season or two and is asking for a lacrosse stick upgrade the following information may help you with selection.
The truth is, a good quality lacrosse stick can make a big difference. I often tell parents, it’s no different than a good set of golf clubs or tennis racket or running shoes compared to lesser quality product. Lighter and tougher with bigger sweets spots and more forgiving. Parents can relate to that analogy.
This is not to construe that great gear will make a great player. I am sure a few parents have fallen for the new $350 golf club and still can’t hit the fairway! However, with good fundamentals and practice, skills learned can be accentuated with higher quality equipment.
More expensive advanced sticks are much more specialized than the generic beginner sticks. Handles come in different shapes and thicknesses as well as grips (coatings) and materials. Heads employ different shapes and pockets designed for different purposes, such as ground balls or passing accuracy. SportsStop.com publishes a Lacrosse Gear Guide each year that clearly explains the different stick types, target player, and price points.
A good way to research different handles and pockets is to ask coaches and teammates. Trade sticks with other experienced players when tossing the ball before practice to get a feel for variations. As a player gets more experienced she may be able to tell the difference and become more particular.
Upgrading to a better lacrosse stick doesn’t need to break the bank. Look for end of season deals or discontinued products. Older model top of the line equipment can be found deeply discounted as described in the post How to Get a Good Lacrosse Stick Cheap.
Lastly, the information above assumes the player wants a better stick, but that is not always the case. Kids get attached to their stick and don’t want a new one, but a coach or parent recognizes a player has improved to the point that her equipment is holding her back. If that is the case, one alternative is to have the pocket restrung, which is described here. Lacrosse Pocket Restringing