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  • Field Hockey Positions and Lineups

    This guide will break down each player position in the game of field hockey, as well as briefly cover common lineups. The 5-3-2-1 and the 3-3-3-1-1 are two of the most popular lineups we'll go over, in addition to elaborating on the roles within each formation. This guide makes playing, coaching, and watching field hockey a lot less confusing for beginners.


    The Positions

    5-3-2-1 Lineup
    3-3-3-1-1 Lineup



    Forwards in field hockey are the offensive players. Forwards need to be explosive, able to pass quickly, and shoot. A 5-3-2-1 lineup consists of a right, center, and left forward and two inners. A 3-3-3-1-1 lineup consists of a right, center, and left forward. However, positioning varies by team.

    Right Forward: The right forward is responsible for getting into open space to receive passes from the midfielders and carry the ball up the right side of the field. They must have strong stick skills and good ball handling abilities. The right forward also crosses the ball into the shooting circle for the inner or left forward to receive and shoot.

    Left Forward: The left forward is responsible for covering the left side of the field and supporting the other forwards, as well as receiving passes in the shooting circle from either the top of the circle or the left post to shoot. The left forward typically does not carry the ball up the left side of the field, since the ball is positioned on the weak side of the stick. However, they should still have strong reverse stick skills.

    Center Forward/Striker: The center forward, sometimes referred to as the striker, is responsible for taking shots on goal. They also support the left and right forwards and cover the middle of the field. If the right forward is carrying the ball up the right side of the field then the center forward is responsible for pinching in closer to support them, and same goes for supporting the left forward. The center forward often receives passes in the shooting circle from the right forward and must be ready to deflect the pass into the goal.

    Inner: In a 5-3-2-1 formation, there are two inners. Their role is to drop behind the center forward for support.


    Midfielders must be dynamic athletes that are skilled offensively and defensively. They are responsible for protecting the neutral zone, passing the ball up to the forwards, winning 50/50 balls, and supporting the defense. Midfielders are typically the most physically fit players on the field, since they cover the entire field.

    Right Midfielder: The right midfielder works closely with the right defender and right forward. They are responsible for passing the ball into open space where the right forward can receive it and carry it down the field. However, if the ball is being carried up the field by the left forward then the right midfielder must pinch in to cover the open space toward the center of the field.

    Left Midfielder: The left midfielder supports the left defender and left forward. They help move the ball up to the left forward. The left midfielder must be skilled in reverse stick skills, since the ball is positioned on the weak side of their stick.

    Center Midfielder: The center midfielder is almost always involved in every play of the game. They are often the most skilled player on the field because they are responsible for initiating plays and supporting every other position on the field.


    Defenders are strong athletes that are responsible for marking, channeling, and tackling the opposition. A 5-3-2-1 lineup has a right and left defender, often referred to as fullbacks. A 3-3-3-1-1 lineup consists of a right, center, and left defender, as well as a sweeper.

    Right Defender: The right defender is responsible for defending the opposing team’s left forward and inner. They must have a strong tackle and be able to channel the opposition away from the goal. The right defender also supports the right midfielder and forward if they have possession of the ball.

    Left Defender: The left defender’s role is to defend the opposing team’s right forward and inner. The opposition will mostly attack with their right forward, so the left defender must have a strong tackle and be able to maintain speed with the opposition to channel them away from the goal.

    Center Defender: The center defender always supports the right and left defenders, depending on which side the opposing team is attacking from. They also help defend the defensive zone from break-away players.

    Sweeper: The sweeper is a crucial player in the 3-3-3-1-1 lineup because they are the last defender before the goalkeeper. They support the right, center, and left defenders by defending unmarked players and getting the ball out of the shooting circle.


    The goalkeeper is the last line of defense. They must have good hand-eye coordination and be able to move quickly to cover the entire goal. The goalkeeper can defend the ball with their whole body as well as a goalie stick. It is essential for the goalkeeper to communicate with the field players, since the goalie has vision of the entire field.

  • Field Hockey Stick Buying Guide

    Field Hockey SticksSearching for a new field hockey stick, but are unsure of what to get? Check out this buying guide to figure out the best sticks available for all levels of play!


    Grays GX750 Junior Field Hockey Stick - The Grays GX750 Junior is a great stick for youth and beginner players. The composite blend of carbon, aramid, and fiberglass make the stick durable, flexible, and forgiving. The maxi toe allows for extreme power. The Grays GX750 Junior stick’s majority-fiberglass composition provides superior shock absorption and gives beginner players an easy way to control the ball.


    STX Stallion 200 - The STX Stallion 200 is the ultimate field hockey stick for beginners. It’s 85% fiberglass composition ensures precise and accurate play. The standard 20mm bow allows for versatility across all positions and the midi toe is perfect for beginners because it has a larger hitting surface. The midi toe also allows for powerful drag-flicks and reverse stick play for beginners. The STX Stallion 200 allows for maximum control and is super-forgiving for better shots and passes.


    STX Stallion 400 - The STX Stallion 400 is the perfect stick for an intermediate player to charge onto the field in a mighty fashion. Lightweight and incredibly accurate, this stick will ensure precise shots and passes. The stick is composed of carbon, fiberglass, and aramid composite material for supreme versatility and power. The standard 22mm bow and midi toe give ultimate control for the forward attacking player. The STX Stallion 400 provides optimal precision and accuracy.


    STX Stallion 800 - The STX Stallion 800 provides elite control and hitting power for advanced players. The stick is built of a high-carbon composite (95% carbon, 5% aramid) for maximum stiffness and hitting power. The 24mm mega bow is designed for powerful lifts and drag flicks and allows players to enhance their aerial skills. The maxi toe ensures ultimate power and the thinner toe design gives increased ball control, allowing for quick and easy movement. The Stallion 800 is the most powerful stick in the Stallion line.


    OBO Fatboy Field Hockey Goalie Stick - The OBO Fatboy is a high-performance goalie stick, perfect for the goalie who wants maximum shot-blocking power. The thicker stick profile features more mass for improved deflection control, but the stick is carefully weighted to keep it from feeling too heavy. The greater surface area of the hooked head shape is essential for defending and receiving. The OBO Fatboy is balanced for goalie hand positioning and allows for easy and fast movement for reliable blocking.

  • Choosing the Best Lacrosse Stick for Women's Lacrosse

    Choosing the best women's lacrosse stick is all about knowing your level of play, position on the field and personal comfort. This guide will help women’s lacrosse players at all levels pick their poison.

    If you’re a beginner, some things to look for:

    Intermediate players:

    • Expect to spend $50-$110 for your stick. Price is of a wider range because once you’re out of the beginner stage, it’s all about preference.
    • If you’re new to the game but starting at an older age, an intermediate stick is recommended.
    • At this level, players tend to switch to a composite shaft and mix and match heads and shafts.
    • If you’re still interested in a complete stick the Brine A1 Complete Stick, STX Crux 300 Complete Stick, deBeer NV3 Complete Stick, and the Maverik Wondergirl Complete Stick all make good choices. The heads on each of these sticks would also pair well with any composite shaft.
    • Complete women's lacrosse sticks tend to be a better deal as far as price is concerned.

    Advanced players:

    Each manufacturer has options for any level and this information is just a snippet of some of the most popular ones. The best way to find your favorite stick is to try them out in stores or borrow a friend's! As long as you are happy with the equipment you're using and it's legal, that's all that really matters!

  • Finding a Good Helmet in Men's Lacrosse

    Helmets are one of the most expensive pieces of lacrosse equipment…and arguably the most essential. We definitely understand: they aren’t cheap. But your lacrosse helmet protects the most vulnerable part of your body, so how could it not be a good investment? Do you know what makes a good lacrosse helmet? Do you know the different parts of this equipment? If not, don’t worry. We’re going to be explaining exactly those things so you can find the right helmet for your particular needs.

    Lacrosse Helmet with the Correct Fit

    Is your helmet game-ready?

    All lacrosse helmets have to meet certain standards for game-ready play. The NOCSAE (National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment) requires that all helmets are made in a way that prevents them from being damaged too easily. All lacrosse helmets are stress tested in certain environments that mimic that of a lacrosse field. When you get your helmet in the mail or pick it up in a store, you can be sure that you’re getting a safe product.

    The Anatomy of a Lacrosse Helmet

    A lacrosse helmet is made out of different parts that make up an entire whole. These are:

    • The Shell – All lacrosse helmets are made out of a super-strong shell. Shells come in all sorts of colors and materials. These are made of plastic (mostly) and are non-adjustable. A good example of a helmet that’s not made of out plastic is the Cascade R Helmet in a Carbon Finish. If your helmet has a crack in it, you’ll need to replace the entire helmet. Don’t take the chance of playing with cracked safety gear.
    • Face Mask – Your face mask is made out of non-bendable metal bars and must form a consistent smooth curvature. Think of it this way… if you cut the helmet in half down the center vertically or horizontally, it should be the same on both sides. In addition to elite protection, face masks can come in all sorts of colors, not just the traditional silver or black. One great example of this is the Cascade CPX-R with a Gold Titanium face mask.
    • Padding – Without padding, the helmet would just rattle around on your head! No one wants that…at all. Padding is made of super-dense foam that absorbs sweat and moisture during play.
    • Chin Pad/Strap – The Chin Pad protects your chin from impacts and also helps to keep your helmet on your head.

    How does your helmet fit? 

    Your helmet should fit securely on your head. It should be tight and secure…but not too tight. For a great fit, you’ll need a measure of your head.

    1. Get a tape measure and measure the circumference around your head in a level line, roughly 1” above your eyebrows. If someone is able to do it for you, all the better.
    2. Hold the spot on the measuring tape where it stops and record what the measurement is. Check the helmet sizing chart to find out your size.

    Manufacturers: Who makes the best lacrosse helmet?

    Ah…the old age question: “who makes the best helmet?” Cascade makes some pretty good helmets. STX also produces some pretty fine headgear. Like most things when it comes to lacrosse, it depends on two things: need and preference.

    If you’re looking for a good youth helmet, you may want to go with the STX Stallion 100. If you’re looking for a helmet that you can easily customize, you’ll want to go with one of the Cascade R or CPX-R helmets. Speaking of customization…


    What’s a lacrosse helmet without a little flair? You can easily trick out a lacrosse equipment to your liking. Choose what color face mask, shell, and visor you want. Cascade will do the rest. This is perfect for teams that want a uniform helmet color.

    Check out some of our custom helmets today!

    Choosing a lacrosse helmet can be a breeze. If you walk in to one of our Lax World locations, you’ll definitely be pointed in the right direction. If you’re not near a Lax World location, call us at 1-800-752-9529 and we’ll definitely be able to help you out and pick the right helmet for you.

  • Mint From East Coast Dyes: Solution To Greasy Lacrosse Balls

    Believe it or not, lacrosse balls aren’t made to last as long as we want them to. Mint3

    Over the course of a season, a ball will get… let’s say… “greasy” over time.

    And by greasy we mean lacrosse balls that are more slippery and harder. Greasers are harder to cradle, harder to control and come out of a pocket differently than a brand new ball. Players hate greasers because they make games and practices unpredictable. You never know how the ball will release from your stick with one of these.

    There are home remedies to fix this problem but let's be honest… who really has the time or energy to go through the process? Keeping that in mind, East Coast Dyes developed their new Mint lacrosse ball to never become a greaser. Playing with these is like always using a brand new ball.

    The Mint lacrosse ball is unlike most lacrosse balls because it’s made of non-rubber polymer which lasts longer than the rubber of traditional balls. East Coast Dyes maintains consistency during manufacturing by ensuring that each ball is of the highest quality and meets all standards. Best of all, each ball is made right here in the USA. Mint balls are approved for NFHS, NCAA and meet NOCSAE® SEI standards.

  • Lax World Announces acquisition of Breakaway Sports

    Lax World

    Lax World Announces acquisition of Breakaway Sports

    Deal will create one of the country’s largest lacrosse retailers

    Baltimore, MD and Denver, CO (January 26, 2016) -- Lax World, a specialty lacrosse retailer based in Baltimore, has acquired Denver-based lacrosse specialist, Breakaway Sports.  The deal will grow the combined company to 14 locations nationwide, expand its online presence and warehousing, and broaden the reach of its Team Sales division from coast to coast.

    Both companies have been servicing customers and helping to grow the game of lacrosse for a combined 48 years.  The deal will enable the combined company to provide more value to its customers and business partners, while extending its market reach to five key markets with plans to expand into several others.

    Frank Barbarino of Lax World said, “We are thrilled to be combining forces with Breakaway Sports. In addition to expanding our store base and team sales capabilities, we our adding a deep and talented group of professionals who are industry leaders in the lacrosse community.” I’m extremely thrilled that Phil McCarthy will be part of the management team as we continue our growth through more acquisitions and organically. Management members from both companies will work collaboratively to create a phased integration plan to join both entities onto one platform.

    Phil McCarthy, Founder and Owner of Breakaway Sports said, “This decision will transform the way we come to market for our customers and employees. This will maximize our potential and allow us to better compete in all sales channels in this evolving competitive environment. Mergers are mostly about the people, and we feel that we are coming together with a great group that will allow us to fully reach our potential to become the largest lacrosse specialty store in the country.”

    The combined company will have stores in Washington, Colorado, New York, Maryland, Virginia and Georgia.

    About Lax World

    Founded in 1988 and headquartered in Cockeysville, MD, Lax World has three decades of expert leadership. Lax World proudly serves its customers through retail stores, e-commerce, and a team sales division. The company transformed hands in 2013 from lacrosse icon and visionary Jim “Darky” Darcangelo by a new management team to take Lax World to the next level in the sport of Lacrosse.

    About Breakaway Sports

    Founded in 1996, and has stores in Washington, Colorado, New York, and Georgia. They have a strong focus on retail and a national presence in team sales. It has prided itself on supporting the growth of the game in many non-traditional markets.

  • Nike/Lacrosse Magazine Women's Div. 1 Preseason Top 20

    Maryland, led by senior midfielder Taylor Cummings, is looking to win its third Women's Div. 1 Lacrosse championship in a row. Rounding out the Top 5 are North Carolina, Syracuse, Stony Brook, and Northwestern.

    women 2016


    Cummings, the first collegiate Lacrosse player to win the Tewaaraton three times, led Maryland in points (100), assists (37), draw controls (143), ground balls (41) and caused turnovers (36).


  • Division 1 USILA Men's Lacrosse Coaches Poll

    The initial 2016 USILA Division 1 Men's Lacrosse poll has been released, with the 2015 Division 1 Champion University of Denver Pioneers ranked #1. Denver received 14 first place votes, followed by Notre Dame (6), Duke (1) and Maryland. Other polls, including Nike/LAX Magazine, have Notre Dame at the top spot.

    Denver looks to defend its first ever National Title on February 13 at Air Force.

    Schools also receiving votes include Marquette, Colgate, Princeton, Penn State, Army, Penn, Fairfield, High Point, Hofstra, Bucknell, Boston U, Richmond, UMass, Marist, and Air Force.




  • Equipment Fitting Guide (to help both the boys’ and girls’ youth player)



    US Lacrosse recently published an Equipment Fitting Guide to help provide first-time buyers, parents and players with suggested guidelines in purchasing equipment. Designed to help both the boys’ and girls’ youth player, the guide explains how lacrosse equipment should feel when properly worn.

    Continue reading

  • Here Are Some of the Best College Lacrosse Programs


    If you're familiar with lacrosse, you already know that the game is growing by leaps and bounds, and that participation numbers in the United States are increasing year after year. This additional interest in the sport has made it a viable one at the collegiate level, as more and more Division I schools are adding the program to their respective athletic departments. For instance, as of 2014, there were 67 Division I college lacrosse programs - and that's not even considering the 57 Division II programs and 216 Division III programs.

    So, yes, for those that work hard enough, there is an opportunity to play the game at the next level. Perhaps you're even among the few that earn a lacrosse scholarship (per NCAA rules, DI programs are allowed to award 12.6 scholarships per four years to lacrosse recruits). But it goes without saying that some lacrosse colleges are a cut above the rest. With that being said, here's a look at the best Division I college lacrosse programs to play for. Continue reading

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