provided by our partner EastCoast Dyes we highly recommend the EastCoast Dyes stringing database as your No. 1 source for stringing patterns and tutorials on how to string up your lacrosse head.
To give you a short introduction we briefly summarized some of the most important terms with providing short definitions of the “stringing language”:
- Traditional or mesh: Basically there are two types of stringing a lacrosse stick: You can either use mesh (soft, hard, wax, Canadian, …) or string your stick up using a traditional approach with interweaving leather stripes with sidewall string to create different types of traditional pockets (Pitapocket , Rocketpocket,…).
- Pocket: The word pocket describes the location where the ball will sit in the head of your stick if you hold it horizontally. There are three basic pocket types: LOW, MID and HIGH pockets. Each of these pocket types has certain advantages and disadvantages:
- LOW: Good for one handed cradleing, provides a lot of hold, but slower release and lower shotspeed. Mostly used for Attackman and one handed dodgers
- MID: Most commonly used, good for two handed dodges, quick release on shot and pass. Mostly used pocket for all positions.
- HIGH: Used for shooting midfielder and attackman, provides a lot of ball control for two handed horizontal dodging and cradling, quick and fast release on shooting and passing. can limit hold sometimes, high pockets can have a lot of whip. Mostly used pocket at the professional level and for box lacrosse.
- Channel: A channel in a strung lacrosse head can provide hold and can channel the ball for more accurate passing and shooting. A channel can be created by stringing the top of the head tight before creating the pocket. Upon those advantages a tight channel can also have the disadvantage for catching the ball because of the tight top and can pinch in the pocket to much when facing off.
- Whip: When a stick has a lot of whip one has to bring back the stick far back upon passing and shooting. This can have the advantage of higher shot speed and a snappy release upon shooting and passing. On the other hand it can slow down catch and release and quick sticks. Those disadvantages can be limited by a lot of practice which can make a medium whip stick the best option for most player.
- Hold: A stick with a lot of hold does not necessarily need to have a lot of whip. Hold describes the ability of your pocket to hold the ball in it upon turning it vertically. A lot of hold can help with keeping the ball while dodging one or two handed. Players that use a lot of hold need to use a bit more force when passing and shooting the ball because it tends to stick in the pocket a bit more. Hold can be created by the combination of U-shooting strings and a very tight channel.
- Pattern: The stringing pattern is the way you string your stick and create the type of pocket you want to use. Because of the different types of heads and the amount of sidewall holes in modern heads there is a almost infinitive amount of patterns for every type of pockets. If you know the pattern of a lacrosse head it gives you the ability to copy the stringing and pocket the exact way. Some stringing companies keep their patterns as a business secret and other share it with the public to improve stringing.
Start to string:
- Soften the mesh: Especially when using hard mesh the mesh needs to be soften before starting to string it. This is mostly been done by using warm water, conditioner and bending the mesh. Wax or soft mesh don’t need to be soften which makes them easier to use.
- Topstring: To provide a good base for the further stringing the topstring as well as the sidewall should always be strung tight. There are two different types of top string: 9 diamond vs. 10 diamond row (which refers to the number of diamond in the row of the mesh). both can provide a good top string however the 9 dia. top string is preferred due to symmetry and tightness.
- regular top string: This is the most common used top string that is easy to string and can provide a tight top string
- triangular top string: This is for all the Lacrosse players that are not only looking for good performance but also want a good looking stick. It has no advantages compared to the regular top string when it comes to performance but is a little bit harder to string
- Sidewall: This is the most important part of stringing your head because it dictates the location of the pocket, the amount of whip and hold and the type of channel you will end up with. The sidewall stringing should always be kept tight and identical on each sidewall. To string your sidewall there are a number of phrases that are explained further on:
- Interlock: To keep a tight top part of your stringing Interlocks are commonly used. and interlock ties the mesh hole directly to the stringing hole at the sidewall and keeps it from moving around. Sometimes you can use interlocks to string up the whole sidewall of your head which will guarantee a very tight sidewall stringing and no dislocation of your pocket.
- Knot: By using a knot you tighten your mesh to the sidewalls even tighter than using an interlock. knots are usually only used at the top part of your stringing to provide a tight top.
- Double up/Triple up: doubling up or tripling up will dictate the position of your pocket. it keeps a lot of mesh in a short position in your stringing and will direct the ball in this position of the sidewall. A triple up can have certain disadvantages like a lot of whip and maybe an illegal pocket. Compared to the interlock there is no direct tying to the sidewall.
- Single: Singles are the same thing as a double up just that you just pull you sidewall string through one mesh whole.
- Tie off: When all the sidewall wholes or the desired amount is strung the stringing is finished with a tie off. before tying off the sidewall string should again be pulled tightly and then tied off tightly as well with a single or double knot.
- Bottom string: to close the stringing of the head a bottom string is pulled through a certain amount of diamond in one row and then kept loos or tighten up depending on what type of pocket you like. A button string in a low diamond row will shift the pocket low, weather a bottom string in a high diamond row will help providing a high pocket.
- Shooting string: To finish off the stringing, shooting strings (often hockey laces) are weaved in mesh rows. When installed correctly they will provide hold, can provide whip and will hinder the ball from hitting and interfering with the plastic top of the stick. Shooting strings can have the shape of a U, V or just simply across, where the V and U provide more hold than simple across.