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Field hockey is a sport I’ve always admired and enjoyed watching. Though, I can probably never play the sport due to being wheelchair bound. However, that fact does not decrease my interest. I can always look into the sport and research about the best playing strategies or the best gear. With that being said, here are 5 tips for buying the best sticks for field hockey.
Knowing Your Gear
This is probably already known to those who have already been playing the sport for a while, but to those that are new to field hockey, knowing what each part of your stick is for is a good start. Let’s look at what you need to know.
The Grip: The grip is the part on the top of the stick. A proper stick should have a grip. Alternatively it can have a grip tape at the top. This is so the player can easily handle their stick.
The Handle: It could be rather obvious, but still – this is the part where you would hold the stick.
The Head: This is the bottom part of the stick. This is the part which would actually come in contact with the ground and handles the playing field. Of course, the head is a very important part. The head is flat on one side as well as round on the opposite one.
The Heel: This is the part where the aforementioned head bends in order to come in contact with the toe.
The Toe: This is where the head ends.
The Scoop: The scoop is a 2mm groove which is located right on the head of the entire stick..
The Bow: The handle is slightly bent in a direction starting from the cradle, ending at the head – that’s the bow..
Knowing what size stick you will need is also very important. If you bought the wrong size stick, you would have a very difficult time controlling the stick on the field. But how do you know if the stick is the right size? A good way to tell is if the stick is 1-2 inches right under the waistline when you use it. If it is, it’s the right stick for you!
The actual position that you play on the field will also have a hand in dictating the size you need. Offense players will need shorter handles and the defense needs longer handles.
Your position will also determine the best weight for your stick as well. If you’re a forward, look into a stick that is 19-20 ounces. Midfielders should look around the 21 ounces range. Not too much bigger than the forwards. Finally, backs and defense should have a stick around 22-24 ounces.
Bows should usually be around 20mm-25mm. The proper amount of the bow you have will affect things like shooting, ball handling, as well as passing.
The toe determines your range of maneuverability and agility. The smaller the tow, the faster the player can move. However, small toes sacrifice in striking range. Bigger toes have better striking range. Look into the best toe for you:
Shorti – Offensive players will do best with this kind of toe.
Midi – Good for beginners.
Maxi – Defensive players would prefer this toe.