FLOORBALL STICK LENGTH

Important aspect of the floorball stick is it’s length. The manufacturers of floorball sticks worked out a chart of the appropriate sticks length according to the height of the player. Example of such chart is this (length of the stick means the length of the shaft without a blade):

Height of the player Length of the stick (new 2013 length)
100 – 120 cm 60 cm (70/71 cm)
110 – 130 cm 65 cm (75/76 cm)
120 – 140 cm 70 cm (80/81 cm)
130 – 150 cm 75 cm (85/86 cm)
140 – 160 cm 80 cm (90/96 cm)
150 – 170 cm 87 cm (97/98 cm)
160 – 180 cm 92 cm (102/103 cm)
170 – 190 cm 96 cm (106/107 cm)
190 cm and more 100 – 103 cm (110/111 – 114 cm)

But more decisive is the proportion between the length of the torso and legs, that’s why the charts are only used for brief idea of the length of the stick and they differ and you can find many versions of such charts with slightly altered measures. Thus better way to find out the appropriate length of the stick is by putting it next to the body of a straight standing player. The blade lays between his feet and the stick stands upright to the floor. The end of the stick should reach approximately 1 to 2cm above the waist. Another method advises that the stick should be so long that when holding it at the end the elbow forms a right angle to the body. Again the end of the stick reaches somewhere to the belly button.

Because of different height of players it is unreasonable to use for example for school purposes all sticks of the same length. For some players the sticks will be too short and for other on the other hand too long. Good floorball shops offer school sticks in school sets with different lengths (usually in 5cm difference) and includes blades bended to both sides (right and left).

The length of the stick and the side orientation needs to be explained to the players and the holding of the stick regularly checked. When using a short stick it leads to a too crouched position and the body of the player is too much bended forward. But more common is that players use a too long stick. In this case it is not possible to reach the basic (optimal) position and the ball control and all other playing activities are more difficult. Especially for children it is troublesome to learn proper basic ball control techniques, passing, shooting etc. if they have too long stick.

Correct floorball player stance

Correct floorball player stance – passing

The sticks are manufactured in a way that they will be used in a right length. There is a certain given angle between the blade and the shaft, so the blade is lying parallel to the floor, touching the floor in the middle and this position provides the player with the best ball control (the ball is controlled with the center of the blade). This is very important because when using too long or too short stick the angle between the blade and the floor is going to change and controlling the ball is becoming more difficult. Another risk factors of a too long stick are also possible health issues caused by an unnatural position of shoulders and the elbow of the upper hand holding the stick.

Floorbal stick length and blade angle

Floorball sticks are produced from the length of 60cm, some producers start already on 50cm. The most common length for male adults is 96cm (without the blade) which is approximately according to an average height of male population (for women it is 92cm). If players are buying their own sticks in young age we leave some tolerance because of their fast growth. The stick should be longer but not more than 7 to 8cm above the waist (never let children play with sticks reaching their neck). This is the maximum difference and applies only for children. The adults should have (because they grow no more) the stick appropriately long to their height. There is a room for length difference too but it should be only in range of few centimeters (1-3cm) accordingly to the player preferences and good feel when playing.

The last but still important aspect of the stick is it’s flexibility. It is defined in millimeters and refers to how much the shaft bends under a load of 300 Newtons. The lower the number, the lower the flexibility. A player according to his physical dispositions needs a stick with a flexibility to be able to bend it against the floor with his own strength repeatedly without any problems. Because a harder stick is more demanding on technique, because the ball often rebounds of it, it’s advisable to use a softer stick for beginners. A strong and big adult defender will use a hard stick with flex of 23mm, a little girl a stick it’s flex is over 30mm. The same applies to blades. The blades vary in firmness too. A firmer blade (‘hard’) will help increase the power behind your shot, while a softer blade (‘soft’ or ‘medium’) will help with your ball control.

The flexibility of floorball sticks usually lays between 23-40mm. Most common used by male adults are sticks with a flex of 25-27mm, for children are more suitable sticks over 35mm. Keep in mind that there is a direct proportion between the flex of the stick and the length of the stick. That means when you shorten the stick it becomes harder. If a stick for example of flex 36 (suitable for a fragile girl) is significantly shortened, the flexibility will change too and the stick becomes much more harder and is no longer suitable for this girl. So be careful when shortening the stick and better buy a stick with the appropriate length than cut the stick of more than 5 centimeters.

And how to shorten the stick? See video:


Images: IFF
Video: Zone Florball TV

 
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