Box lacrosse is the indoor variation of field lacrosse. It developed in regions of the United States and Canada where playing traditional field lacrosse was much more difficult because of cold weather. Most indoor lacrosse games are still played inside a hockey arena and can be played throughout the year.
Enough differences exist between box lacrosse and field lacrosse that the two seem like completely different sports. Indoor lacrosse is much rougher by nature than outdoor lacrosse. It is usually played in a hockey arena because it definitely embodies certain aspects of hockey; there is much more physicality involved in going for the lacrosse ball.
There are two reasons behind the rougher play of box lacrosse:
- A smaller playing field. Indoor lacrosse is played inside a hockey rink. Outdoor lacrosse is played on a football field. This field size difference gives players much less space to maneuver around or otherwise avoid a check.
- Pinching. In field lacrosse, a ball must be allowed to roll out unimpeded. This is opposite of what is allowed in box lacrosse. Here, a lacrosse head can be pinched to prevent the ball from dropping out. Getting the ball from another player means harder hits.
There are many notable differences in other areas of the game too. Outdoor lacrosse goals are much larger than the ones used in indoor lacrosse (outdoor goals measure six by six feet, while box goals only measure four by four feet). Only six players are allowed on each team in box lacrosse compared to ten on each side in field lacrosse.
Tighter spaces and fewer players mean more lacrosse pads for the goalie. In box lacrosse, the goalie is protected like a hockey goalie, with lacrosse gloves, lacrosse helmets, lacrosse shoulder pads, lacrosse goalie chest protectors, leg pads, and thigh pads – all of which are carried by Lax World at reasonable prices. It is a stark contrast to a field lacrosse goalie who only wears lacrosse gloves, a chest protector, a lacrosse helmet, and a throat guard for protection.
If you take up box lacrosse, you will need to invest in a different kind of lacrosse stick than what you would use outdoors. Two different types of lacrosse sticks are used in field lacrosse. Lacrosse attack shafts that measure between 40 and 42 inches long are used by attackers and midfielders. Defenders can use lacrosse defense shafts that measure between 52 and 72 inches in length. When the game is taken indoors, however, only shorter lacrosse sticks are used because the field is so much shorter.
If you take up box lacrosse, one change you would need to adjust to is the use of a shot clock. Most indoor lacrosse leagues use a 30 second shot clock to speed up play. Major League Lacrosse is the only outdoor league so far that has adopted a shot clock in its games.
Regardless of whether you are looking for gear for box lacrosse or field lacrosse, Lax World is a complete resource for the best names in lacrosse equipment, lacrosse apparel, and lacrosse accessories.