Monthly Archives: April 2017

What is the Best Women’s Lacrosse Stick

Best Women's Lacrosse Sticks

2017 Women’s Lacrosse Sticks
Each year, lacrosse vendors roll out their new selection of women’s lacrosse heads and sticks for the upcoming season. Most equipment is designed with specialized technology that helps players get the most of their game. Some are constructed for players who are great defenders; while others have attributes that are best for a player who plays offense. Of course, goal keeper sticks have their own unique features.

This year, two sticks rise to the top of selection. Both have new technology that set them apart from the rest of the collection.

Under Armour Glory
Under Armour was inspired by the University of Maryland when creating this head. They constructed the Glory with the new Rail Elite Pocket , making it ideal for the elite player. The Rail Elite Pocket is unbeatable compared to any other pocket in the market. The high-quality nylons are built to withstand extreme temperatures and reduce weight. It also features Glide Scoop Technology that guides players to the ball no matter what direction they approach it. The Maximum offset offers superior control and feel, especially in the sweet spot. Lastly, the Poron XRD ballstop absorbs ball impact to minimize the chances of the ball bouncing out of the pocket. The Under Armour Glory with Rail Elite Pocket is available as a strung or unstrung head or as a complete stick with the Under Armour Composite Handle. These features make this stick the preferred choice of many college women’s lacrosse programs.

STX Crux 500
Another top choice of the season is STX’s Crux 500. This lightweight 10-degree lacrosse head comes with the Launch Pocket. 10 degree technology shifts the center of gravity, pushing the ball to the sweet spot, thus releasing the ball quicker. The unique Launch pocket features a design where the middle Chevrons widen near the sweet spot to flex out and hug the ball for better control and feel. The STX Crux 500 can also be purchased as a strung or unstrung head or as a complete stick with the STX Composite 10 handle.

2017 Women’s Lacrosse Heads and Handles
There are many other sticks and brands to choose from. Each brand offers a complete line of lacrosse heads that fit the needs of players of each level. Longstreth Sporting Goods specializes in bringing the best of the best equipment to the female athlete. Check out the great selection of women’s lacrosse equipment at Longstreth.

Softball Catcher Drills for the Female Athlete by a Seasoned Pro

softball-catchers-gear-training-tips

Longstreth has asked Jaime Wohlbach, East Stroudsburg Softball Head Coach and Softball Catcher Trainer to share her expertise in the field for this blog. Jaime shares our passion for the game and commitment to women’s sports. She has been involved with every aspect of the game of softball – playing, coaching, training and has built a solid reputation both within the USA and internationally.

She’s been a catcher for many years so it was natural for us to ask her to share a few Drills for the Softball Catcher. From Jaime’s point of view, a softball catcher must be mentally, physically and fundamentally tough, and most important of all, be a leader on and off the field.

Throughout her catching career, Jaime has found that to achieve maximum potential and maintain position readiness, a catcher must train 12 months out of the year.  Here are three drills that Jaime recommends that can be worked on daily, to enhance strength, speed, footwork and stamina.

 Blocking Drill
This is a great drill to build in reaction time to block.  Catchers know solid technique, but it’s reacting to the “missed pitch” that will better prepare catchers.

  • Be in a catcher’s squat facing a wall about 4 feet away from the wall
  • Have a partner stand directly behind the catcher with a softball
  • Tap the softball helmet, right shoulder, or left shoulder of the catcher so they have an idea of which direction to prepare to block the ball
  • Throw the softball directly into the wall so it takes one bounce on the ground before the catcher blocks it
  • Catcher reacts to the softball and blocks it

Sets/Reps:  10 reps, 3 sets, mix up locations, focusing on quick reaction time off the wall with solid blocking mechanics

Bucket Arm Strength Drill
This drill is great to build arm strength and length while keeping form in proper position.

  • Place a bucket with a lid on top on home plate
  • Catcher sits on the bucket
  • Receive a throw and while still seated on the bucket, drop step to a power line spin on the bucket so you are in good throwing position
  • Throw the softball as far as you can, without the ball bouncing (home to second and beyond)
  • Now that your max distance is found, even if you have to throw high and up, continue to repeat throw to that distance spotted.

Sets/Reps:  10 reps, 3 sets, throwing to the spot marked as the furthest distance being reached before bouncing.

Next session, go back one step further than the marked spot to continue to build on strength and length of throw, again, 10 reps, 3 sets, at a distance one step further than the day before

Block and Wild Pitch Combo Drill
This drill incorporates solid blocking technique, while the next softball thrown works on exploding for the wild pitch.  This will result in building power, speed, and endurance while still maintaining good mechanics even when the body gets tired.

  • A catcher in full gear in ready position in a squat
  • A partner rolls a softball underhand for the catcher to block and throw back to partner from the knees
  • Catcher resets to ready position
  • Partner throws a high wild pitch, and the catcher explodes up to catch it, sets to a powerline to throw back to the partner, and back to ready position squat
  • Repeat the above steps…catcher in ready position, drop and block ball, throws from knees to partner, back to ready position squat, explodes up for wild pitch, throws from powerline to partner, back to ready position squat, drop and block ball, throws back to partner from knees, back to ready position squat, explode up for wild pitch, continue to repeat this format.

Sets/Reps:  10 reps, 2 sets, up/down is 1 rep.

This will build strength, power, and endurance.  As the athlete gets tired during reps 6 -10, encourage the front foot to be strong on the powerline to continue solid accurate throws while pushing through being tired.

Jaime’s advice as a seasoned catcher, coach, and clinician developing athletes, is to make the time every day to train.  Why? You do it for the love of the game.  You do it for yourself and no one else.  You do it because the strength within you loves to excel and compete. You do it because you want to be the best catcher you can be and rise to the challenge. You do it because you want to earn your role on the field.  You do it because you anchor the field of success.

Longstreth thanks Jaime Wohlbach for her expertise, passion, and dedication to the game of softball. Visit Longstreth.com for more information about the game, ask the experts, or shop our huge selection of softball catchers gear and other softball equipment.