By now, every lacrosse player and parent should be aware of the NHFS pocket rule changes that will be implemented in the 2016 season. The main change is that all shooting strings must be within four inches from the top of the lacrosse head as well as pass a 90-degree stick check. A 90-degree stick check you have seen when a referee holds a players stick upside down to see if the ball rolls out freely. This means you must have straight shooting strings no more than four inches measured from the top of your lacrosse stick only arced with the top of the head. All players will need to conform to these revisions after this season and quite frankly should do so immediately this pre-season if possible.
Reason #1 – The new pocket rules will result in better hands, as you will not be able to depend on the U shooter.
As a veteran professional who strings a variation of pocket styles on a daily basis I believe every player should have a 2016 legal pocket. “The wand doesn’t make the wizard” as some have so eloquently put it. There is only one excuse that I may accept in this matter and that is you’re a high school senior not planning on playing the sport of lacrosse next year. If this is the case then feel free to keep what you’re using.
Reason #2 – The edge it gives you in the game.
Getting used to the new rule sooner will give you an advantage over those hesitating to do such. Thus giving you enough time to adapt and adjust to what you’re eventually going to be using anyway. Hours of wall ball with a new pocket that will be perfectly legal next year can only help improve your game. Practice makes perfect, whether you’re using a certain type of mesh or traditional stringing the rules stay the same.
Reason #3 – You plan on playing in college.
Finally, knowing that you are well within the NFHS rules and have nothing to worry about is a perfectly good reason to switch today. NCAA rules are a bit stricter so getting used to a pocket that falls in both of these categories would provide you with a nice peace of mind that will last you until graduating from a University with a degree.
If you have any questions on re-stringing your head or would like us to help make the switch you can call or email us and we will gladly walk you through the process. You can also see a full line of college legal pockets at http://www.stylinstrings.com/Category/NCAA-Compliant-Lacrosse-Pockets. You can send a head to us or purchase a new head from all the major leading brands.