Lacrosse Shaft Buying Guide: Weights, Materials & Shapes!
There are many different types of lacrosse shafts on the market, but there is only one shaft that stands between you and your opponent trying to overpower you. In this blog, the experts here at Monkey Sports are going to go over several factors that will help you make the right purchase decision, including:
Lacrosse Shaft Materials & Durability
The durability of a shaft relates directly to the materials the shaft is made out of and the thickness of the shaft wall. The thicker the material, the more durability the shaft will have. Unfortunately the only way to relatively determine the strength of a shaft in the store is by reading the description and using the price as a guide to determine quality.
Aluminum is a low cost material used mainly by youth lacrosse players that are just picking up the sport. Aluminum shafts are mostly constructed out of a thin 6000 series alloy that you see being sold in complete stick setups. Aluminum is a good option for entry-level players but will dent easily at higher levels (not recommended for advanced play).
- Not as durable as other advanced materials
- Does not have advanced grip
- Perfect for young players
Alloy is constructed out of a mix of metals. These metals are usually Vanadium and C405. Alloy shafts are very lightweight, making them great for offensive players who desire a decent strength to weight ratio. Alloy shafts are heavily used at the middle school and high school level.
- Easy to use
- Reasonably priced
- Perfect for young entry-level players
Scandium is becoming the most desired shaft material in the sport of lacrosse. Scandium offers the top strength to weight ratio and it is stronger than the traditional alloy. Scandium is a great shaft for all positions making it an excellent choice.
- Long lasting durability and strength
- Light enough for offensive dominance
- Perfect for elite-level players
Composite shafts are very versatile due to their flex profiles. They are similar to hockey sticks where they come with different levels of flex. With added flex comes added velocity on your shot. Bigger stronger players are encouraged to try stronger flex profiles so they can shoot harder. Composite shafts are made from carbon fiber and are great for offensive minded players.
- Unique grip
- Manufactured for intermediate and advanced athletes
- Flex release provides unrivaled shot velocity
Manufacturers are taking the popular materials such as; alloy, titanium, scandium and are mixing them together to create the perfect strength-to-weight ratio to fit your style. Blends can provide a comparable durability of a Titanium shaft, but have the lightweight feel of a scandium alloy shaft. Blended shafts have the best of both worlds but fall around the middle of the pack when it comes to weight. These shafts are perfect for midfielders.
- Lightweight and Strong
- Versatile and easy to use
- Midfielder's dream shaft
Example: Maverik Union Lacrosse Shaft
Lacrosse Shaft Weight Chart
|Attack||Alloy, composite||5.5 - 7.0|
|Midfield||Scandium, blended||6.0 - 7.0|
|Long Stick Midfield||Alloy||12.0 - 14.0|
|Defense||Scandium, blended||14.0 - 17.0|
Offensive-minded players always tend to lean to something lightweight and dent resistant. They need the lightest shaft possible to rip high velocity shots at their full potential. Alloy shafts are some of the lightest on the market, making them perfect for sharp shooting attackman. Durability is, for the most part, measured by price. For example, $100 alloy shafts will be significantly more dense/durable than the average $60 alloy shaft. Expensive alloy shafts will more than likely have reinforced concave walls making them more dent resistant.
Another material that is becoming increasingly popular in lacrosse is composite. Composite shafts are considered to be more versatile than the typical alloy shaft due to the “FLEX FACTOR”. Composite shafts provide more release power and snap in your shot. They also provide a variety of flex options for you to choose.
Scandium alloy is taking over the sport due to its versatility for both offense and defense. Midfielders are the true athletes of the sport and they need a shaft that can withstand the abuse from playing both offense and defense. Scandium alloy and blended shafts will provide this need. With the combination of both titanium and alloy, midfielders can have that happy medium they are searching for that is best suited for their game.
If you are more offensive-minded then it is recommended to use a lighter scandium or alloy shaft like attackman. If you are strictly a defensive specialist, then it is recommended to get a blended shaft with a lot of titanium in it. This material will be more dent resistant and will not warp or bend. Blended shafts with titanium in them are predominantly used by players in the MLL and NLL due to how strong they are.
Close Defensemen & Long Stick Midfielders
When it comes to close defensemen shafts and Long Pole Midfielders, weight and durability are the most important characteristics to look into. Over the years the manufactures have realized that titanium long poles are too heavy. Players have sacrificed strength by using the lightest shafts possible in order to make aggressive stick checks. Alloy shafts will provide the greatest lightweight advantage, but will be the most vulnerable to denting and breaking. Scandium alloy shafts and blended shafts will be the most ideal for defensive warriors.
Shaft finish is known as the surface texture or surface topography of the shaft. There are three key surface characteristics that provide texture such as; smooth grip, sandblasted grip, and Tactile Grip.
Smooth (No Grip)
Smooth “no grip” is the most traditional shaft finish. It allows the player to customize their grip with tape.
Sandblast (Diamond) Grip
Sandblast grip “Diamond Grip” is the most popular finish that adds little to no weight to the shaft. It also provides a unique feel all over the lacrosse stick. This shaft finish is highly recommended among offensive players, but is known to deteriorate the palm of the gloves quicker.
Tactile Grip with “Rubberized inserts” is preferred by long range shooters who like to have strategically placed grip on the lower end of their shaft for better hold over the shaft while shooting.
Lacrosse Shaft Shapes
Handle shapes are all about personal preference. It all depends on which handle shape fits in your hand the best. The most common handle shapes are seen below.
|Shaft Shape||Image||Brand Examples|
Shop Lacrosse Shafts at LacrosseMonkey!
Your lacrosse shaft is a reflection of yourself; use what you know, trust your first instinct, and you will select the best shaft possible.
A great way to figure out the right shaft for you is to come into one of our stores! Our staff is knowledgeable and always willing to figure out which shaft works best for your playing style. If you already know what you want or are not close to a store, you can check out our lacrosse shafts online.