Getting started as a lacrosse goalie can be a daunting feat. It can be even more daunting for parents. Every parent wants to make sure that their little player is suited up with the proper lacrosse goalie gear.
The safety of a lacrosse goalie is something that cannot be overlooked or taken too seriously. This is especially true as a goalie is learning the game.
We have all the basic equipment that you need to get out on the field.
This one is basic, but important. All goalies, both in girl’s lacrosse and guy’s lacrosse wear helmets. The basic helmet is the same style as a field player. The only addition is a throat guard.
This piece of equipment is unique to goalies. They are the only player who wears one. Throat guards can be attached to any helmet, either by screws or just small pieces of string. The style of the throat guard will vary depending on the helmet manufacturer. Make sure that you contact the maker of your lacrosse helmet to find out which throat guard fits best.
This piece is required for goalies to wear; you do not want to take a shot to the jugular!
All players need to have a mouth piece. You can get them for about 99 cents at any sporting goods store, however they also make some that are specific for concussion protection or for people with various problems with their teeth. We have always found the basic all-sports ones to work fine.
This protects the front of your body, from the chest down to the waist. Some are attached with a pads that protects the upper arms as well. There are many options for chest protectors, larger ones will give you more padding/protection, but will inhibit your mobility. Smaller ones may cause some more pain due to less padding. All lacrosse goalies are required to wear a chest protector as part of their game day gear.
When shopping for a chest protector, look for something that fits your body. Look for good protection around the color bone and neck. Some come with pads that reach over and protect the shoulders. This option may be good for younger goalies, but isn’t advised for higher level players. Shoulder pads can inhibit movement.
Lacrosse goalie gloves come in many shapes and sizes. They feature additional padding on top of the traditional lacrosse glove to the thumb and forefinger areas. This helps to defray the impact of a shot or slash to the arms.
This is only needed for male keepers, but you definitely want to wear it all the time. Be sure that you get a jock strap to hold the cup in.
These are similar to football pants. This can be a critical piece of equipment for a young goalie getting started. Thigh pads help reduce the pain of getting hit and will build confidence for stepping toward the ball.
Like the thigh pads these are completely optional, but can really help a young goalie gain new confidence in the goal. A common concern that accompanies both shin guards and the thigh pads will limit your mobility, however they definitely cut down the pain of getting hit.
These depend on what service you will be playing on, as a general rule though we suggest fairly big cleats. Think football cleats over soccer cleats.
A thicker cleat will provide better protection against getting hit in the feet with shots. You want mid to high cleats to provide some support for your ankles.
Investing in good equipment and treating it right is a recipe for long lasting gear. Gear that is left to dry in damp lacrosse bags will quickly wear thin and break. Your gear is very important, be sure to strap up with everything every time you step in cage, it is important for your safety. Go get ‘em!