How To Play Lacrosse For Dummies

high school lacrosse players

Lacrosse is a team sport that was invented by the Native Americans over 1,000 years ago. If you’re new to the sport, you’re not alone! In recent years, lacrosse has seen an incredible rise in popularity in the United States, Canada, Japan, Australia, and other countries. With men’s lacrosse, women’s lacrosse, and professional leagues like the PLL becoming more established, many new fans want to learn how to play lacrosse. Well first, you’ll need a lacrosse stick and lacrosse ball. The entire game is centered around cradling the ball in your stick, passing, catching, dodging, and shooting. Next, you’ll have to learn the basic rules and strategies that come with playing the game. In this article, we will break down everything a beginner needs to know about how to play lacrosse.

What Is Lacrosse?

Lacrosse is a team sport played using a stick with a netted pocket to throw, catch, and carry a lacrosse ball. The objective of the game is to score goals by shooting the ball into the opponent’s goal.

Each team is made up of 10 players: a goalie, three defenders, three midfielders, and three attackers. The players on the field are divided into three main areas: defense, midfield, and attack. The game begins with a face-off, in which the ball is placed at the center of the field and the two teams’ face-off specialists try to gain possession of the ball. From there, the teams will try to advance the ball down the field towards the opponent’s goal, using a combination of passing and dodging. When a team gets close to the opponent’s goal, they will try to shoot the ball into the net. The goalie will try to stop the shot and prevent a goal from being scored. The team that scores the most goals wins the game. There are also penalties that can be called for various infractions, such as illegal stick contact or offside violations.

Overall, lacrosse is a fast-paced and exciting team sport that combines elements of soccer, basketball, and hockey. It is popular in the United States and Canada, and is growing in popularity around the world.

Who Invented Lacrosse?

game of lacrosse

Native Americans invented lacrosse over 1,000 years ago. The Native American version of lacrosse was much different than the modern incarnation – it was typically played on large fields, with hundreds of players. It also served a spiritual purpose, with certain rituals existing as part of the game. Records suggest Native American lacrosse games could last days, and were often used as a way to settle disputes between tribes. Though woven through Native American culture for centuries, lacrosse wasn’t identified by Europeans until 1636 when they observed “dehontsigwaehs,” another name for Native American lacrosse. From there, it was gradually adapted by Europeans into the game we know today. Regardless of its current form though, Native Americans retain spiritual ownership of this ancient sport.

How To Play Men’s Lacrosse

high school lacrosse players

Rules Of Lacrosse

Lacrosse rules are slightly different for men’s lacrosse and women’s lacrosse. The objective is the same – to score on the opposing team – however, there are different rules around checking, positions, and equipment.

How To Play Attack In Lacrosse

In lacrosse, the objective of the attack is to score goals by shooting the ball into the opponent’s goal. The attack typically consists of three players: a left attack, a right attack, and a center. The left and right attack players are usually great shooters, while the center is typically the primary ball-handler and playmaker. The attack are offensive players who use a combination of passing and dodging to create scoring opportunities. They may also try to set picks for each other, which is when one player stands in front of a defender to create space for a teammate to receive a pass. Overall, the key to success in attack in lacrosse is to work together as a team and use effective passing, dodging, shooting, and decision making to create scoring opportunities.

How To Play Midfield In Lacrosse

In lacrosse, the midfield is typically made up of three midfielders: a left midfielder, a right midfielder, and a center midfielder. The midfielders are responsible for both offense and defense, as they must be able to transition quickly between the two.

On offense, the midfielders’ primary role is to help advance the ball down the field towards the opponent’s goal. They will often receive passes from the defense and then carry the ball up the field, using their speed and stick-handling skills to avoid defenders. The midfielders will also look to pass the ball to the attack players, who are better positioned to score goals.

On defense, the midfielders’ primary role is to apply pressure to the opponent’s ball-carrier and try to prevent them from advancing the ball. This may involve sticking closely to the ball-carrier and trying to knock the ball loose, or it may involve playing a more passive defense and trying to anticipate the opponent’s next move.

Overall, the key to success in midfield in lacrosse is to be versatile and able to play both offense and defense effectively. This requires a combination of speed, endurance, stick-handling skills, and strategic thinking.

How To Play Defense In Lacrosse

In lacrosse, the defense is responsible for preventing the opponent’s attack from scoring goals. The defense typically consists of three players: a left defender, a right defender, and a center defender.

The primary role of the defense is to apply pressure to the opponent’s ball-carrier and prevent them from advancing the ball towards the goal. This largely involves sticking closely to the ball-carrier and trying to check the ball loose.

The defense will also work to control the area in front of their own goal and prevent the opponent from getting open shots on net. This involves sliding to guard offensive threats if their defender gets beat on a dodge. When the defense gains possession of the ball, they will often look to pass the ball to their midfielders, who can then carry it up the field towards the opponent’s goal.

Overall, the key to success in defense in lacrosse is to be aggressive and apply constant pressure to the opponent, while also being smart and disciplined in positioning and decision-making.

How To Play Women’s Lacrosse

high school lacrosse players

To begin playing women’s lacrosse, you’ll need the basic equipment including a lacrosse stick, goggles, shoulder pads and cleats. The goal of the game is to score more goals than the opposing team. Players attempt to advance the ball down the field by passing it back and forth and try to pass the ball into their opponent’s goal by shooting or cradling it. At any point in the game, six players from each team may be on the field: one goalkeeper, three defenders, two attackers and one mid-fielder. In addition to these players’ strategies, coaches need to come up with strategies for their teams as well, such as offensive plays or defensive schemes. Women’s lacrosse can be a thrilling sport if played properly; it requires not only physical fitness but also mental toughness and the ability to work together as a team under pressure. It is a fast-paced, exciting game that will keep you on your toes every moment!

How To Play Attack In Women’s Lacrosse

Attack in women’s lacrosse is all about finding shooting angles and maintaining control of the ball. As an attack player, your primary goal is to create a shooting opportunity for yourself or other players on the team. To do this, you’ll need to quickly get comfortable with the basics of the game, including catching, cradling and passing. You’ll also need to master the various types of shots used in lacrosse so you can effectively create scoring chances for yourself and other attackers. When preparing for offensive situations, it’s important to keep your stick low and ready, use quick change of direction as needed, protect your stick with body position and stay aware of any defensive players who are actively trying to take away your space. Additionally, take time to practice running off-ball cuts that give you more open lanes towards the net. By staying patient when attacking the goal and taking advantage of any available openings, you will increase your chances of producing results while on attack in women’s lacrosse.

How To Play Midfield In Women’s Lacrosse

Playing in the midfield position in women’s lacrosse provides an incredible opportunity to be a leader on offense and defense. Midfielders need to be able to contribute in all areas of the game, from controlling possession during attack plays to supporting the defense on transition. It takes both speed and skill to be successful, but with some practice and the right strategies, any player can become a great midfielder. When on offense, it’s important for a midfielder to work together with her teammates to move the ball up the field quickly while minimizing turnovers. To do this effectively, developing good communication between yourself and your attackers is key — letting them know where you’re going and where they should go as well. And when defending, midfielders are responsible for playing both 1v1 throughout the mid-field and 2v2 in order to help force turnovers or slow play down. Lastly, conditioning is also extremely crucial in order for midfielders to stay fresh and balanced throughout their shift. With regular practice and proper technique, any player can learn how to be an effective athlete in the midfield position of women’s lacrosse.

How To Play Defense In Women’s Lacrosse

The principles of playing defense in women’s lacrosse are similar to those in men’s lacrosse, with a few key differences.

First, in women’s lacrosse, you must stick-check away from the ball-carrier’s body. If you stick-check the opponent’s body, you will be called for a foul. Players are only allowed to make stick to stick contact.

Second, in women;s lacrosse, defenders want to approach the defender in a safe and controlled manner, initiate slight contact, and dictate the direction they want them to go.

Overall, the key to defensive success in defense in women’s lacrosse is to be quick, agile, and smart in positioning and decision-making. This will allow the defense to apply pressure to the opponent and prevent them from advancing the ball towards the goal, while also avoiding penalties for illegal stick contact.

FAQ

how to play lacrosse

How Good Do You Have To Be To Play College Lacrosse?

The level of skill and ability required to play college lacrosse varies depending the level of competition (D1, D2, D3, MCLA). In general, however, college lacrosse is a highly competitive sport, where most players have a high level of athleticism and skill.

In terms of athletic ability, most college lacrosse players were previously successful at the high school or club level, and have a strong foundation in the fundamental skills of the game: stick-handling, passing & catching (both hands), and shooting. Collegiate players also have excellent speed, endurance, and physical fitness. College coaches LOVE players with superior endurance. If you’re looking to stand out from the pack, work on your endurance in the offseason. Many players take their foot off the gas in the offseason, whereas college recruits are consistently, running, training, and getting stronger – along with keeping their stick skills sharp.

Because college lacrosse is a highly competitive sport, there are several levels of competition: D1, D2, D3, and MCLA. The highest level of competition in college lacrosse is Division I. Division I schools are typically the largest and most prestigious institutions, and they offer the most athletic scholarships. Below Division I is Division II, which is also a highly competitive level of play. Division II schools are typically smaller than Division I schools, and they offer fewer athletic scholarships. The third level of competition in college lacrosse is Division III. Division III schools do not offer athletic scholarships. MCLA is an alternative college lacrosse league to the NCAA, that offers opportunities for college players to continue playing the sport at a high level. MCLA teams include big name schools like Clemson, Texas, Stanford, West Virginia, and Boston College.

Overall, to be successful in college lacrosse – regardless of what level of competition you pursue, you will need to be skilled at the fundamentals of the game, maintain a strong work ethic, and dedicate yourself to improving your athleticism & endurance in the offseason. It is also important to be a good teammate that works well with others.

How Much Does It Cost To Play Lacrosse?

For men’s lacrosse you will need the following equipment:

Listed above is the average price of lacrosse equipment. Overall, it costs about $800 total to get started playing lacrosse. For youth players, it costs about 30-50% less (~$480) to purchase youth equipment. If you are on a budget, you can easily purchase discounted equipment and shave several hundred dollars off of your total.

How To Play Wall Ball Lacrosse?

Wall ball is a training drill used by lacrosse players to improve their stick-handling skills. It involves throwing and catching the ball against a wall or other solid surface, using various lacrosse moves and techniques.

To play wall ball, start by standing about five to 10 feet away from the wall. Hold the lacrosse stick with the head of the stick facing towards the wall. Toss the ball against the wall, using the lacrosse stick to catch it when it bounces back.

Next, try using different lacrosse moves and techniques to catch the ball. For example, you can use a cradle to control the ball as it comes back to you, or you can use a fake to deceive the wall and catch the ball in a different spot.

As you become more skilled, you can increase the difficulty of the drill by moving further away from the wall, throwing the ball harder, or using more advanced moves.

Overall, wall ball is a great way to improve your stick-handling skills and become more comfortable with the ball in your stick. It is a fun and challenging way to practice on your own, and it can be done almost anywhere with a wall and a ball.

What Is Box Lacrosse?

Box lacrosse, also known as indoor lacrosse, is a variant of lacrosse played in a smaller, enclosed area. The game is played indoors, typically in an ice hockey rink, with boards and glass surrounding the playing area.

Box lacrosse is similar to field lacrosse in many ways, but there are some key differences. First, the playing area is smaller, which means that the game is faster and more physical. Second, there are fewer players on the field, with each team consisting of six players: a goalie, two defenders, and three forwards. Third, there are different rules for stick contact and checking, which make the game more physical and allow for more body contact.

Overall, box lacrosse is a high-speed, high-intensity version of lacrosse that is exciting to watch and play. It is popular in Canada, where it originated, and is growing in popularity in the United States as well.

Final Thoughts

how to play lacrosse

Although has a slight learning curve (like everything in life), it can quickly becomes exhilarating to watch and play. For players, it combines speed, endurance, strength, skill, and creativity. Players must learn how to develop good hand-eye coordination and ball-handling skills. This makes it challenging and rewarding to succeed on the field. Additionally, lacrosse is a team sport. This means that players must work together and rely on each other to be successful. This can create a strong sense of camaraderie and team spirit, which makes the game a ton of fun to play.

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