Lacrosse gloves are considered to be the most significant items of equipment that you will purchase. They are responsible for the overall feel of your stick, and take a beating from the opposing defensemen. Ideally, the player is going to want the gloves that will allow them to have the most natural feel over the stick. Developing second-hand nature with the stick is important, and that is why the experts here at MonkeySports strongly suggest investing a little more time and effort in selecting gloves.
Thumb: Most will argue that this is the most important part to the glove. The thumb is the most vulnerable to injuries and it is responsible for how well you handle the stick. There are a variety of different styles of thumb protection on the market giving you plenty to choose from. Each model of glove has a different pattern for how the padding is segmented for better maneuverability. With that being said, be sure to analyze how many times the thumb is segmented. The more segmentation, the more flexibility the glove will offer. Lastly, be sure to see if the thumb has any additional reinforcement, such as plastic or carbon composite inserts. This additional padding counters the initial impact from stick checks, causing the collision energy to be absorbed easier.
Palm: The overall quality of a glove is determined by the type of palm material. If you are having trouble figuring out why one glove is more expensive than the other, it is most likely the palm material. Axe Suede is the most premium material on the market and it will provide the most natural feel over the stick. There are other materials such as Nash and Mesh that provide good durability as well, but are not as comfortable. Lastly, some gloves have been adding additional layers in the palm to prevent the gloves from wearing down and getting holes. For most gloves this can be seen as a grey material in the palm that is strategically placed in key abrasion areas.
Ventilation: Given that lacrosse is the fastest sport on two feet, players tend to get overheated. That is why manufacturers have been incorporating ventilation in their gloves to keep the players cool and in the game. Traditionally gloves have had ventilation on the backhand, but it has recently been beneficial to put air vents within the palms. This will keep the players hands cooler, and prevent the gloves from collecting sweat. Vents do however add extra seams inside the glove. This will take away from the overall smoothness of the inside of the glove. So unless you are a player who struggles with sweaty hands, it is recommended to choose a pair of gloves with little to no vents in the palm.
Grip: Manufacturers have been incorporating more grip material into some of the gloves by placing rubberized inserts into the palms. This is beneficial for players who want to limit the weight of the stick by not adding tape. The grip will improve stick handling and help prevent the eventual yard sale. One downside to rubberized inserts in the palms is players will not be able to twirl or slide their hands up and down the stick as easily when dodging and shooting.
Liner: There are a variety of different liners out there that make up the inside of the glove. The most common liner is Nylon, which is very soft to the touch. There are many other different liners on the market that have special features such as, sweat-wicking liner, no-odor liner, and climate control liner that is perfect for all the seasons of the year.
Fit Profile, Sizing, and Fitting
The majority of lacrosse gloves are designed to have a contoured fit profile that completely encapsulate the player’s hands for a more natural tight fit. This will provide maximum protection and flexibility. You will notice that lacrosse gloves are segmented with several creases throughout their design. This allows the player to have higher levels of flexibility and mobility without sacrificing protection.
When it comes to preference in sizing; some players like to have a skin-tight-fit, while others prefer a more loose and flexible-fit. Neither preference is superior as long as it is able to protect your hands.
The number one sign that a glove is too small is if the player’s fingers stretch out the top of the gussets passed the padding. This is how fingers get jammed and broken because they are not concealed under the padding.
The glove is also considered to be too small if the bottom of the players palm is not covered by the palm material. The Black Palm band at the bottom of the glove should sit on your wrist and not your palm. (Reference Images Below)
Here at MonkeySports we encourage you to try on the gloves before purchasing at your local retail store. If you are not fortunate enough to have this luxury, then here are some tips to help you choose the right size seen below with our sizing chart.
Gloves range from sizes 8”, 10”, 12”, 13”, and in rare cases 14.” The chart above will show a breakdown to better estimate what the player will need. Nike and STX tend to fit a little more snug, so if you are having trouble deciding on what size to get, It’s better to choose the larger size and grow into it, given you are at the age to do so.
Lastly when it comes to choosing lacrosse gloves, use what you know, trust your first instinct, and we are sure it will fit “LIKE A GLOVE”. If you have any questions about the process of picking the perfect gloves, feel free to contact any of our experts at one of our Monkey Sports superstores, or a customer service agent at Lacrossemonkey.com.