Lacrosse is a fast and sometimes dangerous sport that requires gear that allows for
maximum movement and maximum protection. Below are some key things to consider when
making purchases for new equipment.
Complete sticks are sticks that include a strung head attached to a shaft.
Complete sticks are great options for developing players because the heads are typically
designed for entry level play and the shaft is typically made of a softer, less
expensive metal. Typically, complete sticks are available at a lower price
point, becoming an affordable option for those first introduced to the sport. Complete
sticks are sold at all lengths: field length includes a 30” shaft, defense
length includes a 60” shaft, goalie sticks include a 40” shaft and women’s
sticks include a 42” shaft. We do offer a few youth complete sticks
for our K-3rd grade players, these sticks are sold with a 28” shaft.
To better understand the components of a complete stick, please view the Heads,
Shafts and Stringing sections.
The Head of the stick attaches to the shaft and carries the ball during play.
All heads are made from a high grade plastic but vary in weight, design and technology.
When shopping for a head, it is important to first know which head specifications
your league participates under. The head specifications are the measurement
requirements the head must meet to be legal. The requirements are set
by either NFHS (National Federation of State High School Associations) or by NCAA
(National Collegiate Athletic Association) rules. Typically, if you are playing
youth or high school lacrosse you are participating under NFHS rules and college
or post-collegiate lacrosse plays under NCAA rules. Goalie heads See
chart requirement chart below:
When distinguishing between head designs, it is valuable for both men and women to
look at three different parts of the head, The Scoop, the Pinch, and the Sidewall:
The Scoop (Beginner/Advanced) – The scoop of the head is the top construction
of the head. The scoop comes in contact with the ground during ground ball
pick-ups. The scoop varies from a flat design, where the scoop has little
curve at the top, to “U” shape, where the scoop has a lot of curve at
the top. Heads with a flatter scoop for designed for developing players; more
plastic is in contact with the ground making it easier for a ground ball pick-ups.
Heads which feature a distinguished “U” shape are better for advanced
players. A “U” shape scoop will channel the ball better during
a pass or a shot, making the head more accurate.
The Pinch (Wider/Narrow)– The pinch of the head refers to how wide or
how narrow the face of the head is. A wider shaped head is better for developing
players because it is easier to catch the ball; it’s like having a larger
baseball glove. A more pinched, or more narrow head is better for advanced
players. A more pinched head retains the ball better during checks and is
more accurate during passing and shooting. Be aware that more pinched head
are harder to catch the ball and they are more difficult during ground ball pick-ups.
If you are buying a head for a specific position, defensive players typically prefer
wider heads and attack players or players who shoot the ball often prefer more pinched
The Sidewall (Stiffness/Weight) – The sidewall refers to the sides of
the head. The sidewall determines the weight and the stiffness of the head.
A sidewall with more plastic typically adds weight to the head but makes the head
more stiff. A more stiff lacrosse head is beneficial for players who are often
stick checking (defenders and midfielders). A head with more open space in
the sidewall typically makes the head lighter but reduces the stiffness. A
lighter head is preferred typically by players who are often shooting or passing
(attack and midfielders). A lighter head will often make the head more flexible
which is not as effective during stick checks. It is always good to
look at the sidewall design to gauge if the head is better for stiffness or for
weight. Ultimately, choosing the perfect head for each individual player
is based on playing style and what the player values most.
Shafts are sold at a variety of lengths. You will notice the large variety
of price points shafts are available in. The manufacturer sets the price of
the shaft based on the material used to produce the shaft. Below you will
find a list of both shaft length and materials. When buying a shaft it is
valuable to look at three main components of the shaft, The Grip, The Strength and
The Grip – The grip on lacrosse shafts can be either smooth/no grip (most
common), sand grip (the technique of sandblasting or adding a sandy coating) or
sticky grip (a tacky coating applied to the shaft). A sand grip typically
adds little to no weight to the shaft but it can deteriorate the palm of the gloves
quicker. A sticky grip often replaces the need for tape but does wear off
over time. A smooth shaft which does not offer a grip is the most common but
players often need to add tape which adds weight to the shaft.
Strength – The strength of the shaft relates directly to the materials
the shaft is made out of and the thickness of the shaft wall. Typically the
greater the strength, the greater the price point. Stronger metals make stronger
- Weight – The weight of the shaft also relates to the materials the shaft
is made out of and the thickness of the shaft wall. A heavier shaft moves
slower during passing, shooting and checking but is more effective during stick
checks. A lighter shaft moves faster during passing, shooting and checking
but is less effective during stick checks. The best way to gauge the shafts
weight is by checking out our features tab or by knowing the material the shaft
is constructed from.
Aluminum – Aluminum is the most common material used and the original after
wood. Aluminum is a low cost material but doesn’t provide the quality
of strength other metals can. Aluminum shafts are typically constructed of
6000 series alloy and they are often the shafts which are attached with complete
sticks. Aluminum is a great metal for developing players but will quickly
dent at more advanced levels.
Alloy – Alloy is a mix of metals consisting of usually a 7000 series alloy.
These metals include C405, Vanadium and other variations. Alloy offers a great
strength to weight ratio and is often offered at a great price point. Alloy
can easily be altered to add additional grip through applying a sticky grip or by
sandblasting. These shafts are very common at the high school and lower
Composite- Composite shafts are made from carbon fiber. Composite
shafts offer a unique feel, much different than metal shafts. A benefit to
carbon composite shafts is that they won’t dent or bend; they can still break.
Also, composite shafts aren’t nearly as cold as metal shafts, making them
the number one option for women’s shafts.
Scandium- Scandium is becoming the most desired shaft material. Scandium offers
top strength to weight ratio. Scandium is a single metal type which allows
for the bond to be stronger than traditional alloy. Scandium is a great shaft
for all positions, the weight and strength has become ideal.
Blends- Blended shafts are the newest version of lacrosse shafts materials.
Manufacturers are taking scandium, alloy and titanium and blending them to find
the perfect strength-to-weight ratio. Blends often offer an ideal feel but
the consumer will often have to pay a little extra for the premium combination.
Titanium- Titanium is known for its superior strength. These shafts are perfect
for players who play aggressive and demand the most from their lacrosse shaft.
The weight can be slightly heavier than other metals but the strength of the shaft
makes it worth it.
Shoulder pads cover the top of the shoulder, the collar bone and the sternum.
Protecting yourself is the number one priority on the lacrosse field; players cannot
afford to wear a poor fitting pad. When purchasing lacrosse protective equipment,
the consumer should examine the flex, ventilation and protection. The width
of the shoulder pad is easily adjustable by a strap which attaches to the front
of the body of the pad. The bicep pads are typically removable and easily
adjustable. Shoulder Pad Liners are becoming a popular version of a shoulder
pad because of its low-profile design. Shoulder Pad Liners won’t be
worn with a shoulder pad, the player wears either a traditional shoulder pad or
shoulder pad liner. Shoulder pad liners often offer the same amount of protection
around the collar and sternum but usually offer less protection around the shoulder.
Rib pads are not a mandatory piece of protective equipment. Rib pads are common
for players who might be prone to rib or abdominal injuries. Rib pads are
worn under the shoulder pad and protect the player’s lower ribs, abdominal
area and lower back. Rib pads are commonly purchased for players who are protecting
themselves from a pre-established injury and are looking to speed up their recovery
time. Rib pads adjust by a strap which fits over the shoulder of the
player and adjust through the waist by a strapping system. A player wants
to avoid purchasing too large of rib pads because they can interfere with the natural
motion of shooting and passing.
Protecting the players elbow is very important in lacrosse; stick checks often land
on the players arm. Arm protection comes in a variety of pads: arm guards,
arm pads, and defensive pads/sleeve. All three types of pads offer different
Arm Guard – The arm guard is the most common arm protection. The
arm guard offers the most amount of protection but might be too bulky for some playing
styles. The arm guard is typically a three piece pad which includes: the upper
barrel, the elbow cap and the lower barrel. Arm guards are more common
for developing players, attack players and players who carry the ball often.
The arm guard typically includes an inner compression sleeve to hold tight to the
arm, along with an upper and lower strap.
Arm Pad – The arm pad is the most popular pad at more competitive levels
of play. Although the arm pad offers less protection than the arm guard, the
arm pad offers greater flexibility with less bulk. The arm pad typically uses
an inner compression sleeve to hold the pad tight to the arm, along with a single
upper strap. Arm pads are the most common pad for competitive midfield players.
Defense Pad/Sleeve- The defense pad also known as the defensive sleeve, offers
the least amount of protection. This pad meets the minimal requirements for
arm protection. This type of pad is not recommended for developing players.
Mostly defensive players and players looking for the least amount of bulk wear this
pad. Defense players typically don’t get stick checked on the arm as
much as midfield and attack players, this is the reason why defense players wear
When purchasing new gloves, there are many stylistic and functional options to consider.
A good way to begin on your venture of finding the perfect glove is to compare fabrics,
protection, and functionality aspects. Gloves take the most amount of contact
from the opponents stick so you want to find a glove that you are comfortable with.
Like with all protective equipment, buyers want to evaluate gloves based on ventilation,
protection and flexibility.
Ventilation- Ventilation is commonly found on the back of the glove along with the
palm of the glove. It is important to have good ventilation because a player
must be able to always have complete control of their stick. During the course
of a game, sweat can build up and you don’t want your gloves absorbing all
Protection- Players need the greatest amount of protection on the back of the hand
and throughout the thumb. It is always valuable to focus on the cuff of the
glove. Gloves either have two pieces or three pieces of layered protection
on the wrist. If the glove offers 3 pieces of protection, then it has an adjustable
cuff guard which protects players’ wrist during ground ball pick-ups.
Flexibility- Flexibility will be determined by the amount of padding breaks and stitch
points in the glove. A more flexible glove will allow the player to have better
stick control and better control of their movement in the wrist and fingers.
A more flexible glove will typically be a higher price point but will take little
to no time to break in.
The helmet is the most important piece of equipment. Lacrosse helmets are
unique to other sports helmets because of a handful of features. Lacrosse
helmets feature a visor which helps keep the sun out of the players’ eyes
when catching, passing and shooting the ball. Also the chin of the helmet
follows the natural chin line of the player in order to better protect against contact
with a shot or pass. Lacrosse helmets vary in fit, vision and weight.
The most important part of the helmet is the fit. A player cannot afford to
play in a poor fitting helmet because it will not protect like it is designed to.
See Fitting Guide for proper fitting instructions. The field of vision the
helmet provides is determined by the face mask. The weight of the helmet will
be determined by the material of the shell, the material of the mask and by the
materials used to pad the helmet.
Goggles are a mandatory part of equipment for the women’s game.
Goggles fit snug to the face much like a swimming goggle. The adjustable back
strap is fully adjustable and will allow for a “one size fits most”
fit. The frame of the goggle varies between a gel backed frame and a foam
frame. Different players prefer different styles of frames. Another
variable in goggles is the mask. Masks are made from different materials;
alloy, titanium and tungsten are the 3 most popular mask materials. Different
goggles do offer different protection around the bridge of the nose. It is
important to determine the protection, weight and field of vision when buying goggles.
Box Lacrosse Helmet
Box lacrosse, also known as indoor lacrosse, is becoming more popular in the United
States. A box lacrosse helmet is a hockey helmet with a box lacrosse specific
mask attached. Like with any sports helmet the player wants to make sure they
have a snug fit on the head. The box lacrosse mask varies by weight and field
of vision. Most box lacrosse mask fit all brands of helmets. A box lacrosse
helmet varies from a field lacrosse helmet because it box lacrosse players do not
have the need to block out the sunlight with the visor. Box lacrosse helmets
are traditionally lighter than field lacrosse helmets. Be aware that box lacrosse
helmets are typically not legal for field lacrosse play.
Goalies are the modern day gladiators of lacrosse. With players shooting the
ball harder and harder, finding the correct protective equipment for a goalie is
crucial. Unique to the goalie position, goalies must wear: throat guard, chest
protector and goalie gloves.
Throat Guard- The goalie throat guard is often specific to the brand of helmet it
must attach to. Manufacturers do offer goalie throat guards which offer a
universal fit, meaning they can fit all brands of helmets. The throat guard
attaches to the bottom chin of the helmet and protects the goalies throat against
shots. The throat guard must be able to move slightly with the player so that
the player doesn’t expose his throat to his opponent. Throat guards
are often made from a high grade plastic or foam and vinyl material.
Chest Protector- The goalie chest protector protects the entire front chest and abdomen.
Most goalie chest protectors are dual gender, meaning both male and female players
can wear them. The chest protector fits over head and rest on the shoulders
of the player. When evaluating goalie chest protectors, customers should look
at the material used to pad the protector, the amount of protection around the shoulders,
the length of the pad and the protection around the sternum. It is important
for the chest protector to focus on sternum protection because the sternum is highly
important area to protect. All chest protectors have adjustable straps to
ensure a snug fit.
Goalie Gloves- At the youth level of play, players can use field player gloves but
at higher levels of play, a goalie specific glove is mandatory. An injured
or broken thumb is the most common injury for lacrosse goalies. Our intentions
are not to scare players out of goalie, but to educate them that having a protective
goalie glove is highly important. The method to protect the thumb varies from
different manufactures. Always examine the material used around the thumb
and the degree to which it protects. Aside of thumb protection, also think
about the three common factors: ventilation, protection and flexibility.
Box Goalie Equipment
Total Lacrosse strives to set themselves apart from their competitors. One
unique approach Total Lacrosse has tackled to do just that is by becoming the premier
box lacrosse retailer in the United States. Total Lacrosse stocks all the
equipment unique to box lacrosse.
Chest Pad- The upper body pads are much like hockey goalie pads. In our box
lacrosse goalie section you might find a few hockey chest pads which work well for
lacrosse too. These pads fit close to the body and offer the utmost protection.
The chest pad protects the collar, chest, abdomen, shoulders and arms.
Goalie Pants – Mimicked from hockey goalie pants, box goalie pants are thick
pads which slide up and attach snug around the waste. Box goalie pants offer
protection all around the entire leg and stop at the knee. You will find that
most of the box goalie pants are manufactured for hockey but work perfect for box
Shin guards- Box lacrosse shin guards are not your typical shin guards.
Box lacrosse shin guards protect from the top of the foot to above the knee cap.
The box lacrosse goalie shin guard attaches by multiple straps in the back and fit
tight to the leg. Box lacrosse goalie shin guards are unique to this sport
and Total Lacrosse has them in stock.