It’s crucial to wear the proper lacrosse gear and apparel for safety, comfort, and a skillful edge. Cleats are arguably one of the most important pieces of equipment in lacrosse. In this buying guide for lacrosse shoes, you’ll find important information for buying cleats that combine advanced flexibility, durability, and comfort with lightweight ingenuity.
Find the Right Fit
Lacrosse cleats should not be too tight, nor too loose as to cause blisters. There should be at least a one-half inch space between your longest toe and the top of your lacrosse shoes, according to the American Academy of Orthopedist Surgeons. Cleats can be found with both high tops for additional ankle support, or low-cut to provide the ankle more flexibility on the field. The shoes should also be tight enough to prevent slippage, but loose enough for breathability and comfort.
Cleat Design and Function
To provide adequate traction on grass and mud, cleats are generally designed with four studs in the heel area, with an additional six to eight studs in the forefoot area. Cleats can be found with shorter spikes for athletes who play on artificial fields where greater traction is not necessary. Choose lacrosse shoes that are lightweight to provide more efficient flexibility and breathability. A stiff midsole is recommended to absorb impact and to protect the foot from soreness, fatigue, and injury.
Most athletic cleats are made from leather or synthetic materials. Synthetics offer the best flexibility and traction for more efficient movement on the field. They also provide a higher level of protection and support from injury due to their lightweight construction and stability. There are numerous advantages to choosing synthetic cleats, including:
- Reinforced support in the forefoot, ankle and mid-foot
- Lightweight technology for enhanced range of motion
- Breathability on the shoe’s upper portion
- Superior traction on grass and in unfavorable conditions, such as mud
- Engineered techniques to provide greater motion control
Cleat Type and Style
There are several types of lacrosse cleats that offer their own set of advantages on the playing field. Turf shoes feature raised patterns on the bottom of the shoe that take the place of studs, giving athletes better control over motion and stopping. Molded cleats are ideal for dry, well-kept turf or fields and have non-removable rubber formed on the bottom. Detachable cleats have studs that can be screwed on and off for easy replacement. These cleats are most versatile as they can be used on different types of fields due to the adjustable spikes.
Lacrosse gear should fit well and be comfortable for long-use wear. To play the high-impact, high-energy sport, proper footwear is a must and no regular shoe will do. Take into consideration where the game will be played and your personal need for foot and ankle support. Buying lacrosse gear doesn’t need to be challenging when safety, comfort and optimal game play is kept in mind. The right pair is sure to handle the sport’s fast-moving action.