Lacrosse is a moderate-risk sport that can give you minor bruises and pains easily when you don’t wear your gears right. It is a fun sport but at a fast pace that can hurt you. Even while you are practicing, it is essential to choose the right gear so you can perform your best in the main game and stay protected side by side. Now a question comes, what to wear to lacrosse practice?
There are two kinds of clothing and gears: one that is compulsory and the other ones that are not. That means it is the player’s choice whether to wear them or not. Among them, some are to cover your body parts while others are for your protection during the game.
Important Lacrosse Protective Gears:
Protective gears are the ones that are recommended to wear during the game to stay protected from a possible injury. NOCSAE is the regulatory body that sets the safety standards for protective gear. Here are the gears that can protect you during the game or practice session of lacrosse.
Helmets: When it comes to the protection of the head, helmets are required but men need helmets with face masks because there is more physical contact in men lacrosse than women. Women can wear light helmets for the game. The helmet should fit right and follow the NOCSAE safety regulations. Even when you are practicing alone, wearing a helmet helps you to know how to perceive the ball with a weight on your head.
If you are a goalie, you may also need to protect your neck. Helmets for goalies have throat protectors attached.
Mouthguard: In the real game, a mouth guard is a must-to-wear gear. However, it is also recommended during the practice session so you don’t feel uncomfortable when you play it during the real game. It protects your cheeks, lips, teeth, and tongue.
Eye gear: For the women’s lacrosse, eye gear or goggle is necessary. Many goggles have steel cage construction for eye protection. Women also use plastic goggles that offer an improved peripheral vision.
Gloves: Gloves help to protect your wrists, hands, and fingers while allowing you to move them freely. Wear them to your practice session so you can get used to using them when you hold the stick. Thumbs need extra protection so there’s a hard plastic inside; always check it before you buy the gloves for an added protection. If you are a goalie, then going for extra padding in the gloves can help you better in protection.
Cleats: Shoes with cleats are needed when you are practicing on the ground. Wear the shoes that you are going to wear on your match day so you can see whether you are comfortable in them or not. Other than lacrosse cleats, you can go for the soccer or football cleats but the baseball spikes are not allowed.
Shoulder and elbow pads: Elbows and shoulders are vulnerable to get injured in the game of lacrosse, so their protection is also essential. When you are practicing alone, you can leave them at home, but when practicing with the team, you must wear them because you don’t want to get injured while you are practicing for the real game. Many men also go for rib pads and full arm guards for better protection.
Chestguard: To protect the heart and lungs inside, a chest guard is necessary for goalies. In the young athletes in the US, commotion cordis is the second most known cause of sudden death. Only 20% of the victims survive this condition. It happens when there’s a sudden impact on the chest that stops the heart. So, NOCSAE set the new rule that the goalies must wear the SEI-certified chest protectors. Many coaches have extended the protection and make the whole team players use them.
Protective cup: Wearing a cup is optional, but it is highly recommended during the practice sessions as well as the real game. Every man must wear it during the play.
Leg protection: Protecting the legs and shins are also necessary. Usually, goalies wear padded lacrosse pants beneath their shorts. Women also go for the shinguards at the youth levels.
The Right Clothing:
What do you need to wear in clothing when it comes to lacrosse practice? The answer appears simple but there are many things to consider.
- Game jersey: Well, have one jersey for the practice sessions and one for the game. The jersey should have moisture-wicking abilities with odor resistance. It should fit right and must be comfortable. You can also use any of your comfy t-shirts for the practice. It is up to you entirely.
- Shorts: Lacrosse players wear shorts. Make sure the material is long-lasting and they feel comfortable. It is better to run in shorts. The moisture-wicking abilities must be checked here as well.
- Socks: You can wear polypropylene socks as the first layer and on cold days, go for an additional layer of woolen socks.
- Fleece jacket: On cold days, a fleece jacket can be worn that can easily fit your pads underneath. They should be loose and comfortable to wear.
- Waterproof jacket: On rainy practices, wearing a thin waterproof jacket is suggested to have a good practicing session.
- Hand warmers: Many players like to stay warm and wear hand warmers or hotties inside the gloves. Also, latex gloves can be worn under the playing gloves on a cold day.
Bonus Practicing Tips:
You can make the most of your practice when you know all the safety rules during the play. Also, practice like you are in the real game. When practicing in the field, you must wear every gear that you are going to use on a game day. It is because it will help you know how much weight you will be playing with; so, you can be prepared. Wearing the gears also assists in making precise actions. This way you will practice the right way.