Straight Shooters: Canadian Mesh, Pocket Advice
by Matt Zash | Special to Lacrosse Magazine Online | Zash Archive
Is Canadian soft mesh better than regular soft mesh, and
-- Charley Eastman, East Providence, R.I.
Personally I don't use soft mesh of any kind, but if I did, I would have to go with Canadian. (Sorry America...or China...whoever makes the regular stuff.) When compared to regular soft mesh, manufacturers claim the Canadian style holds up better against the elements. It doesn't expand as much when it gets wet or contract as much as it dries.
According to lacrosseforums.com, there appears to be some controversy surrounding this particular Canadian import. Many have questioned the authenticity they demand of such a product and claim they can spot a knock-off. After reading countless, ridiculously technical, threads, I finally learned from poster Braindeadjock that "Real 'Canadian Mesh' is more like 1.5 thick soft mesh with a different weave, smaller holes, and very thin edges..."
Moreover, our Northern Neighbors call this product STX Medium
I am an attackman and a middie. I use a Warrior Razor Pro head. I strung it myself, and I use hard mesh with a very deep pocket. My question is what are some ideas that will reduce the size of my pocket so that it is legal? The way that I had strung my head has the pocket so deep that if I start using it in a game, it will become very illegal. Also, the way I have the pocket strung there is a specific way I have to throw and shoot.
-- Brad Rosstedt, Toms River, NJ
The reason you have to throw a certain way is because your pocket is so deep that the lip it created doesn't allow you to follow through. Having a lip like that greatly affects your release point, thus changing your natural throwing technique.
At any rate, to make your pocket legal, you have a few options.
First, try tightening both sidewall strings and/or tightening the
bottom string by the ball stop. If that doesn't do the trick,
you'll have to completely restring the sidewalls. When you string a
head, make sure to count the number of "diamonds" you use down the
sidewall. A diamond is a single hole/box in the mesh. I've found
that most people use nine diamonds from the top of the sidewall to
the bottom (not including the diamond that is fixed to the scoop of
the head). The more diamonds you use, the bigger the bag.
ABOUT STRAIGHT SHOOTERS
We get questions all the time to which, frankly, we don't have the answers. Luckily, we've got four pros on hand.
Matt Zash, a former Duke All-American, currently plays for the NLL's New York Titans and MLL's Long Island Lizards. He also owns and operates The Lax Hut, a chain of lacrosse retail stores based in New York. Lindsey Biles a former Princeton All-American and Tewaaraton Trophy finalist, ranks second all-time among scorers there. Rashad Devoe is a lacrosse-specific strength and conditioning coach that has worked with some of the best players in the country for over 13 years. Nathaniel Badder is the officials training and education manager for US Lacrosse.
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