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For players just getting started in lacrosse, we know that finding the right equipment can be a bit confusing, and perhaps, even a little intimidating. It’s important to know that there are key differences in the required protective equipment between the boys’ and girls’ game, as well as between field players and goalies. Also, box lacrosse has its own unique gender-neutral equipment requirements.
Minimal equipment is required in girls’ and women’s lacrosse due to its non-contact nature. A stick, mouthguard and protective eyewear are the only required items for most players. Headgear and close fitting gloves are optional for field players. Goalies are also required to wear a helmet with face mask, a separate throat protector, padded gloves and a chest protector.
Boys field players are required to use a helmet, stick, gloves, shoulder pads, arm pads, a mouthguard and a protective cup. Rib pads are optional. Goalies are also required to wear a helmet with face mask, a separate throat protector, padded gloves and a chest protector.
USA Lacrosse Equipment Guide
Each year, USA Lacrosse publishes an equipment guide that outlines the equipment needed to play lacrosse. The guide is designed provide first-time buyers, parents, and players with helpful suggestions in purchasing equipment.Download Here
Some of the required equipment (boys’ helmets, girls’ headgear and goggles, goalie chest protectors for both boys and girls) must meet ASTM or NOCSAE performance standards, while other equipment does not. Items certified as compliant with a standard are listed on the Safety Equipment Institute (SEI) website.
Chest Protector FAQ
The use of goalie chest protectors that meet the NOCSAE performance standard, ND200, is now mandatory in the USA Lacrosse boys’ and girls’ youth rules, the NFHS boys’ and girls’ high school rules, and the NCAA men’s and women’s rules. Beginning in 2022, boys’ and men's field players must also wear chest protection that meets the ND200 standard.
Legal Women's Sticks
USA Lacrosse maintains a current listing of lacrosse sticks that are legal for play in women's lacrosse. The list is arranged alphabetically by manufacturer.
Headgear use is optional in girls' and women's lacrosse, however, any headgear used must meet the ASTM standard, F3137.
Helmet Fitting Tips
All major rule sets require a NOCSAE certified lacrosse helmet. NOCSAE conducts rigorous tests and sets standards for safe athletic equipment, including lacrosse helmets.