Preparing for a sport is a big buying decision, and there is a bit of a dilemma for beginners. Should you choose cheaper materials to reduce losses in case you don’t like it, or go for the latest and expensive tech gadgets to show how committed you are? This one of the reasons why hockey fans need to know how to choose a hockey stick.
Long-term players do not have a much better time at this. As experts, they know exactly what they want and the fact that it tends to be costlier. Even at that, if your game is hockey: band, court, or ice, here are some tips on how to choose a hockey stick.
Which Type of Stick is Right for You?
When you’re looking for how to choose a hockey stick, there is more to consider than the right size. There are pros and cons to every stick on the market. You might think that all you have to do is figure out which one suits your style in the price range you want, but it’s not that simple. Among other things, you need to consider the height and weight of the stick.
When in search of how to choose a hockey stick, not having the correct length hockey stick can seriously affect the quality of your game. Finding the correct length, although it depends a bit on the position you are playing in, is quite easy. Hold the stick from the front. It should be 1 or 2 inches higher or lower than your chin. The shorter sticks are perfect for handling field hockey balls or hockey pucks, but they cannot hit hard. Long sticks allow you to aim and develop a controlled stroke with limited effort.
Field hockey sticks range from 535 to 560 grams. Usually, the correct weight depends on individual choice. Light and heavy sticks have distinct advantages.
Lightweight (535g-545g): A light stick is responsive and eases wrist mobility, thereby facilitating quick back-swing and stick skills.
Heavyweight (550g-560g): A heavier stick adds strength to your strikes.
Whether right-handed or left-handed, hockey sticks are bent and very few blades stay straight these days. The blade is bent at the tip, neck, or heel. Of course, you prefer one type of curve over the other.
Flex is the strength of the shaft and higher numbers reflect harder shafts. The level is the amount of force required to flex an inch of a stick. The recommended flex is about half your weight. Stiffer shafts are used in defensive positions, with most forwards using sticks with good flex.
The lie of the stick is the distance between the tip and the base. Some sticks are between 4 and 7. Each lie reflects a two-degree angle deviation. For example, a 4 lie is 137 degrees, while a 5 lie is 135 degrees, and so on.
For players who hold the puck in front and go down to the box, lower lies generally work best. Those who lower the puck on their ice hockey skates and skate straight tend to prefer a low position. When on ice, the entire blade should be smooth on the surface, not just the toe or heel.
Hockey sticks are made from a variety of products, from wood, fiberglass, Kevlar, aluminum to titanium. A wooden stick is a good choice for beginners looking for how to choose a hockey stick. They are said to give the puck a better feel. A durable composite graphite stick or Kevlar stick are equally good choices for the more experienced player. They are made with greater precision taking into account the needs of the front players.
Carbon, fiberglass, and wood are the most common products used in manufacturing hockey sticks. Each component brings its own qualities and adds unique properties.
Carbon: Carbon creates toughness and strength. Simply put, the higher the carbon ratio, the higher the power.
Fiberglass: Fiberglass is used for strength and durability. When used in conjunction with carbon, they combine to provide nearly indestructible protection.
Wood: Wood is the hardest component, but it provides flexibility and is forgiving enough for clean handles without so much technical skill. Using traditional wooden hockey sticks is a great way for beginners to learn to feel the puck and develop a quick movement.
Ultra-low bow: 24.75mm is good for drag, vertical, and sweep. Top players use the stick to maximize speed and accuracy.
Low bow: 24mm is common anywhere. The form improves ball control and encourages aerial skills without affecting hitting techniques.
Classic bow: The regular curve is 22mm, which maximizes both control and power.
You may or may not like the grip. Sticks that don’t come with sweat grips have a smooth finish and are perfect for when you want to push your head side to side, although you will be sacrificing the response with a less secure grip when the hockey gloves get wet or dirty.
Normal Wear And Tear
You have to factor in wear and tear and the color of the stick will break after a sharp hack, strike or slide due to the nature of the game. The paint chip does not void the warranty of most hockey stick brands.
A smart way to decide the expected price of a hockey stick is to browse a bit. With so many styles and series, there is an endless variety with Adidas, Grays, and Gryphon leading the way. With many other big-name manufacturers and an almost endless variety of online and real marketers, no matter how flexible you are or how you prefer to bend, you will definitely find what you are looking for.
Over time, all hockey players know which stick is best for them, just as soccer players know their cleats. Whether you’re looking for your first stick to join a local field team or you’re an ice expert adding a new stick to your collection, it’s good to know how to choose a hockey stick, but it’s on best to visit a shop and try a couple in real life.
Hockey sticks are really as individual as shoes and to produce a game you need the perfect fit. A carefully selected new stick is an extension of your arm. Okay, this may not get you the Stanley Cup at first, but with the right stick, you can get a good shot at the puck.