A Maharadja Guide to Selecting a Stick!
As a Dutch brand, we are at the forefront of the hockey game and make sure our products are as well. When selecting a stick, there are quite a few components to take into consideration. Read on to help you find the right stick to take YOUR game to the next level!
Length: As a player grows, the field hockey stick should grow along with them. The stick actually is like an appendage as the brain makes neuromuscular connections to its size. These connections allow players to perfect their hits, receptions, tackles and dodges!
Youth Siizing: There are 2 methods of sizing By Hip Height & the Dutch sizing method. Either will work.
By Hip Height: Look for a stick that stands to hip height If the player is growing rapidly, a little larger is okay but cumbersome. With stick sizing, you are combining 2 factors in the game of field hockey, getting low but also being able to have a long reach. You can measure from floor to hip and you should come out with the size in inches. We have sticks from 25”-36” with every inch in between!
Dutch Method: Hold a stick upside down, with the head under your armpit like it is a crutch. The top of the stick should fall between your kneecap and about 2” below it. Sometimes this method of sizing is more comfortable especially if someone has long legs.
Move to a “Senior” sized stick: 36.5” or 37.5” around puberty. A player at this age is competing against various heights of players and the hip height measurement goes out the window. If you are 4”11 or 5”11, stick size may only vary an inch. If you on the shorter side, you need the reach of a longer stick. If on the taller side, you have the reach, but need to get low to make tackles and effectively perform dodges and hits. When they reach 5’7 or 5’8, many players feel more comfortable with a 37.5 (preference) Your stick becomes an an appendage and the neuromuscular connections you make allow your brain and body to know the exact distance to hit a ball, the reach you need to steal a ball or the distance to dodge another player so settle on a size now and stick with it.
Do NOT cut a “Senior” sized stick to fit your height as you may change the balance of the stick.
What is a field hockey stick made of?
Once upon a time, there were all made of wood. However, today’s sticks come in different materials that alter the performance, weight, power and stiffness as well as the price. Selecting a stick to work with you ie. selecting the best stick for your level and your style of play is important! Read on to find out what these different stick attributes mean!
Ours have a well-designed fiberglass covering for additional strength and power but the benefit of the wood stick is its softer touch and forgiveness. Perfect for a beginner allowing more successful ball receptions and movement. As the least expensive option, it is a good fit for a first time player that isn’t sure they will stick with the game. A fantastic first stick for indoor and beginners.
Mostly made of fiberglass, these sticks are still forgiving but provide more stiffness giving it more power and a stronger feel when hitting the ball. Designed for developing players, these sticks are generally lighter and are move forgiving than sticks with carbon. Great option for developing youth players and new players mostly playing on grass fields.
Carbon creates stiffness that increases power to your stick on top of your strength! However, too much carbon can adversely affect field skills. The increased rigidity requires greater stick skills to receive and maneuver the ball. A player may recognize a stick has too much carbon for them when they have trouble receiving or controlling the ball. However, if you have the skill, the addition of a higher carbon can give the additional power needed to advance your game. Match the stick to YOUR GAME with one of our many options!
Juniors: 10%, 20%, 30% in a lighter stick designed for their size.
Competitive: 10%, 20%, 30%, 40% & 50%
Elite: 40%, 50%, 70%, 90% & 100%
Balancing materials to soften the touch and dampen any vibration caused by the stiffness of high carbon sticks.. Elite sticks will have several cores of carbon and our High end sticks utilize a Japanese fine woven carbon for an even softer feel with the power.
BOWS or CURVE?
Another very important part of the stick selection process. Generally, this is influenced by your style of play. After selecting a bow, you can customize it with the appropriate level of carbon. Newer players will be most effective with a mid or balanced bow. Players who love stick work, lifts, pulls and 3-D skills are candidates for the low bow options.
The bow is even across the length of the stick below the grip. The mid bow can vary in degrees but is well balanced. Players who like to tackle, distribute and sweep & hit love a mid bow. The mid bow makes it easy to control and distribute power while offering a bigger sweet spot for sweeps and hit. Youth sticks have a 20-22 mm bow, Junior sticks a 22mm bow and our Mid Range & Elite Sticks have a 24 mm bow. The increase in bow adds more dimension to playing skills allowing the stick do more of the work.
Our Low Bow, the Sword is an evenly balanced 24 mm bow placed a little lower on the stick. Making stick work even easier, it is perfect for the players who loves to do stick work, pulls, lifts, spins and 3-D skills. The lower bow increases ball control working perfectly with a players ball movement skills without affecting hitting technique. The perfect combination for players who love maneuvering the ball.
Our extreme low bow, the Jhuknaa is a 25mm centrally balanced extreme low bow 20cm above the head. It allows quick stick handling with a shorter rotation between forehand and backhand. An excellent stick for quick stick dribbling, low rise sweeps, aerials and drag flicks. Elite players love the accuracy and speed . However, this elite stick is not for everyone as players may have to change hits and sweep mechanics but once they get the hang of it, the advantages are great.