How to Choose Lacrosse Cleats: A Friendly Guide for the Perfect Pair

This post contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links. But it never influences our product selection process.

Choosing the right pair of lacrosse cleats is crucial when playing lacrosse, whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned competitor.

Understanding how to select the perfect pair of lacrosse cleats is essential for a comfortable and practical performance on the field.

A well-fitting pair of cleats can make all the difference in your game by providing optimal support, traction, and stability.

This article shows you how to choose lacrosse cleats. We will discuss what to look for, new tech that makes them better, and the best brands. You also learn tips for fitting and looking after your cleats.

Let’s dive in and find the perfect pair for you!

Understanding Lacrosse Cleats

First, you need to understand lacrosse cleats. In this section, we’ll cover the basics of lacrosse cleats, including the different types and anatomy.

Cleat Types

There are several types of cleats suitable for lacrosse, each designed to cater to specific needs and preferences:

Cleat Types
  1. Low-cut cleats: provide the most minor ankle support but allow maximum agility and speed. It’s ideal for players who prioritize quickness over support.
  2. Mid-cut cleats: Offer a balance between support and mobility. These cleats are a popular choice for many lacrosse players. They provide adequate ankle support while allowing for excellent side-to-side movement.
  3. High-cut cleats: are for maximum ankle support. They are ideal for players who need extra protection. However, they may limit mobility compared to mid-cut or low-cut options.

So, when choosing your cleats, consider your playing style and the level of support you require.

Cleat Anatomy

Understanding the basic anatomy of lacrosse cleats will help you make an informed decision. Here are some key components:

  • Upper: The upper part of the cleat is made from synthetic or natural materials, such as leather. You’ll want a material that’s comfortable, breathable, and lightweight.
  • Outsole: This is the bottom part of the cleat that provides the traction needed on the field. Look for cleats with a sturdy outsole for good traction and durability.
  • Midsole: The midsole is crucial for cushioning and support. Cleats with proper arch support and cushioning help prevent injuries and keep your feet comfortable during play.
  • Closure: Most lacrosse cleats feature lace-up closures, ensuring a snug fit and proper support. Some high-end models may also offer different lacing systems to improve foot stability.
Cleats Anatomy
Source: Unozero.com

When choosing the right lacrosse cleats, it’s essential to consider factors like traction, support, durability, and comfort, which may vary among different brands and models.

Pay attention to these features in conjunction with your playing style, position, and personal preferences to make the best choice for your game.

How to Choose Lacrosse Cleats: Factors to Consider

Player Position

Consider your playing position. Different positions require different features for optimal performance.

For attackers and midfielders, look for cleats that provide optimal agility and speed. Lightweight designs with low-cut ankle support may be ideal.

On the other hand, defensemen and goalies often benefit from more ankle support and stability, so consider mid-cut or high-cut cleats.

Cleat Material

The material of your lacrosse cleats significantly affects their durability and comfort. Cleats are typically made of two principal materials:

  • Synthetic materials are lightweight and offer good support, ideal for players prioritizing speed and agility.
  • Leather provides a more comfortable fit and better durability but may be heavier and less breathable.

Consider your preferences and the trade-offs between comfort, support, and weight when selecting your cleats’ material.

Fit and Comfort

A well-fitting cleat is essential for optimal performance and injury prevention. When trying on cleats, consider the following factors:

  • Foot shape: Different brands may cater to different foot shapes. Try on multiple brands to find the one that best fits your feet.
  • True-to-size: Check the brand’s sizing chart, read customer reviews, or ask other players about the sizing accuracy of the cleats.
  • Sock thickness: Wear the same type and thickness of socks that you will use during games when trying on cleats.
  • Foot measurement: Measure your feet to determine the correct size. Keep in mind that feet may change size over time, so it is crucial to measure them regularly.

Ankle Support

Ankle support is a vital factor in choosing lacrosse cleats, as it prevents injuries during high-intensity movements. Cleats come in three different cuts:

  1. Low-cut: Offers the most minor ankle support, but is lightweight and allows maximum agility. Best for attackers and midfielders.
  2. Mid-cut: Provides moderate ankle support without sacrificing too much agility. Suitable for most players, especially defensemen.
  3. High-cut: Offers maximum ankle support and stability. Ideal for goalies and defensemen prioritizing stability over agility.

Select the appropriate cut based on your playing position, personal preferences, and any previous ankle injuries or concerns.

Cleat Features and Technology

Stud Pattern

Pay close attention to the stud pattern of lacrosse cleats to achieve optimal traction on the field.

Lacrosse Cleat Studs
Source: Lax.com

The type of surface you play on may influence your decision. There are molded studs suitable for natural grass and turf surfaces and detachable studs for varying field conditions.

Some popular stud patterns include:

  • Rounded studs for quick, multi-directional movements
  • Bladed studs for better grip and sudden direction changes
  • Combination stud patterns that provide both speed and stability

Midsole Construction

The midsole construction is another crucial aspect to consider regarding comfort and performance on the field.

Look for cleats with good arch support and cushioning to help prevent injuries and keep your feet comfortable during play.

Some options to consider are:

  • EVA foam midsoles to provide cushioning and light impact protection
  • Polyurethane (PU) midsoles for more durability and support
  • Dual-density midsoles that offer a combination of cushioning and support

Learn more about what the midsole is.

Cleat Weight

The weight of your cleats can directly impact your speed and agility. Different cleats offer varying levels of weight, which can affect your performance on the field.

It’s important to find a balance between lightweight construction for speed and a sturdy, supportive design that ensures durability.

For example, the New Balance Freeze LX V4 is known for being lightweight while still providing excellent traction and support. Other cleats, such as the Nike Alpha Huarache 8 Elite, offer a light design with solid performance characteristics.

In conclusion, take the time to understand the various features and technologies in lacrosse cleats before making a decision.

Considering the stud pattern, midsole construction, and cleat weight will ultimately help you find the perfect pair to elevate your game and keep your feet comfortable on the field.

Brand and Quality Assessment

When choosing lacrosse cleats, it’s vital to consider the brand and product quality.

This section will discuss reputable brands, warranties, and durability factors that should influence your decision.

Reputable Brands

There are many trusted lacrosse cleat brands available on the market. Some top brands to consider include:

  • Nike: Offers the Alpha Huarache 8 Elite, a popular choice among lacrosse players.
  • Under Armour: The Men’s Command Pro MC is one of their standout options.
  • New Balance: Known for the Freeze LX V4, which provides superior traction and lightweight comfort.
61MdwWlqD1L. AC SX695
New Balance Men’s Freezelx V4

Each brand offers different features and benefits, so take the time to research and compare before making a decision.

Warranty and Durability

Durability is an essential factor to consider when choosing lacrosse cleats.

Quality cleats should withstand the wear and tear of a lacrosse season, ensuring they last longer and provide better value for your money.

When comparing brands and models, look for information on warranties. A longer and more comprehensive warranty will give you peace of mind and protect your investment should any manufacturing defects or issues arise.

To help you assess the durability of the lacrosse cleats, consider the following criteria:

  1. Material: High-quality materials such as synthetic leather or durable mesh fabric will provide a longer-lasting cleat.
  2. Construction: Pay attention to the stitching and construction, which should be sturdy to withstand intense gameplay.
  3. Spike Design: Choose cleats with reinforced spikes that offer stability, proper rotational movement, and solid traction.

Trying on and Testing Cleats

Proper Fit Technique

You need to ensure the cleats fit properly. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Wear the right socks: Use the same type of socks you’ll wear during games to guarantee a true fit.
  2. Try on multiple sizes: Don’t just settle for your regular shoe size; try at least one size up and one size down to find the best fit.
  3. Measure your feet: Take note of your measurements to compare with the manufacturer’s sizing chart. Remember that different brands may have slight variations in sizing.
  4. Ensure space for your toes: There should be a thumbs-width of space between your longest toe and the end of the cleat.
  5. Check for heel slippage: Make sure your heel doesn’t slip out as you walk or run.

Note: Your feet can expand after physical activity, so trying on cleats later in the day is a good idea.

On-Field Testing

Once you have found a pair of cleats with the correct fit, it’s time to test them on the field. Here are some factors to consider:

Lacrosse Today and Future Prospects
  • Traction: Check if the cleats offer sufficient traction on various field surfaces, including grass and turf. The right cleat should provide the grip for quick starts, stops, and turns.
  • Comfort: Pay attention to how the cleats feel on your feet as you move around the field. They should offer enough support and cushioning, and shouldn’t cause any discomfort or pressure points.
  • Flexibility: The cleats should allow for natural foot movement, especially in the forefoot area, to help with agility and quick directional changes.
  • Durability: While it’s difficult to gauge the long-term wear of the cleats during a short test, look for features like reinforced stitching and high-quality materials that suggest a more durable construction.

Caring for Your Lacrosse Cleats

Maintenance Tips

Regular cleaning: Keep your cleats looking fresh and dirt-free by cleaning them after each game or practice. Use a soft brush or cloth to remove any dirt or debris. You can also use a mild soap and water mixture to clean stubborn stains.

Drying: Never put your cleats in the dryer, which can cause damage and decrease lifespan. Instead, stuff them with paper towels or newspaper to absorb any moisture and allow them to air dry in a well-ventilated area.

Dry Lacrosse Gloves
Drying lacrosse gear

Storage: Always store your cleats in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight, as exposure to UV rays can cause the materials to break down over time.

Longevity Tips

Rotate your cleats: By alternating between two pairs of lacrosse cleats, you can extend the lifespan of both pairs. This gives each pair a chance to dry out completely between uses, preventing the build-up of bacteria and odors.

Proper lacing: Make sure you lace your cleats securely but not too tight. Over-tightening can put unnecessary stress on the eyelets and upper materials.

Invest in quality: Higher quality lacrosse cleats are often made with more durable materials, which can help them withstand the wear and tear of the game. While they may be more expensive upfront, avoiding frequent replacements can save you money in the long run.

Purchasing Your Cleats

Where to Buy

You have a few options to consider.

You can visit local sporting goods stores or lacrosse specialty shops, where experienced staff can help you find the right fit and style for your needs.

Another option is buying from online retailers like Amazon, Eastbay, or lacrosse-specific websites. These online stores often feature helpful reviews and size charts, but check their return policy if the cleats don’t fit as expected.

Price Considerations

Deciding on a budget can help narrow down your choices. Lacrosse cleats can vary in price, so you must consider what features are most important to you.

Higher-priced cleats may offer better materials and technology, while more affordable options could provide good value without breaking the bank.

Here’s a rough price range breakdown:

  • Budget-friendly ($30-$60): These cleats may offer essential features like adequate traction and durability but could lack higher-end materials or advanced technology.
  • Mid-range ($60-$100): Mid-range cleats usually come with better materials, comfort, and durability, offering a good balance of price and features.
  • High-end ($100+): The most expensive cleats are often packed with the latest technology, providing top-notch comfort, performance, and style. They may also come from popular, well-established brands, such as New Balance or Under Armour.

Remember: the best cleats for you meet your needs and budget. A higher price doesn’t always guarantee a better fit or performance.

Conclusion

In summary, finding the right lacrosse cleats is a process that requires careful consideration of several factors, such as surface type, playing style, and budget.

We’ve compiled the most important aspects to remember to make the process more streamlined for you.

First and foremost, identify the type of surface you’ll be playing on. If it’s natural grass, traditional cleats are ideal, while synthetic turf surfaces require specialized turf shoes. You can experiment with both types during practice sessions to find the perfect fit for your needs.

Next, take into account your playing style. Position-specific features like ankle support and extra padding might be essential, especially if you are a goalie or a player making frequent and dynamic movements on the field.

Budget is another crucial aspect when choosing lacrosse cleats. It’s essential to balance affordability and quality, ensuring that you invest in a pair with the durability, comfort, and performance necessary for a competitive edge.

As you try on different pairs of lacrosse cleats, remember to seek feedback from your teammates and coaches, who might have valuable advice based on their experiences.

We wish you the best of luck searching for the perfect lacrosse cleats. Remember to prioritize comfort, performance, and durability when making your decision. Ultimately, it’s all about finding the cleats that help you play your best game and enjoy the sport you love.

5/5 - (2 votes)