Top 10 Important Rules of Lacrosse

Mostly played in the United States and Canada, lacrosse is an up-and-coming sport. Early 20th-century western society adopted it after Native Americans played it in the 17th century.

This game is played on grass fields and involves scooping, passing, and shooting a small rubber ball into 6ft by 6ft goals using “sticks” (metal shafts with mesh nets at the top).

There are a number of restrictions on excessive checks in lacrosse, including stick contact and body contact. A player can be set up for a free shot by elaborate plays, individual dodges, or fast breaks.

Currently, Major League Lacrosse (MLL) hosts six teams across the United States and is the nation’s largest professional lacrosse league. As of 2020, there’s going to be a Premier Lacrosse League with 6 teams (PLL). Future mergers are likely since both leagues are growing.

Read Also: What is the Fogo Lacrosse Player Position?

Do you know what the top 10 lacrosse rules are?

  1. Equipment
  2. The Field
  3. Time
  4. Substitutions
  5. Offsides
  6. Stick Checks
  7. Body Checks
  8. Basic Offensive Sets
  9. Use of Free Hand
  10. Goalkeeping

1. Equipment

In order to play lacrosse, you will need a variety of equipment. Helmets, chest protectors, and gloves are required for all players. In order to move more freely, goalies usually choose not to wear elbow pads while all other players must.

In most cases, the ball is smooth, rubbery, and white. There must be an approximate circumference of 7.75 inches and a weight of 5 to 5.25 ounces. There should be no more than 3.5 inches of circumference on the shaft of the stick.

Long stick players must have a stick length of 52-72 inches and short stick players must have a stick length of 40-42 inches. 3.5 inches wide at the top, 3 inches wide at the bottom, and 6 inches wide at the widest point of a stick. 

To make sure a player doesn’t get too much hold in their stick, the pocket of the lacrosse stick is spec’d out. In the first place, a pocket can’t be deeper than the ball’s diameter. Second, if the ball doesn’t fall out of a pocket that’s 90 degrees to the ground, it’s illegal.

2. The Field

110 yards by 60 yards is the size of the lacrosse field. Possession of a ball goes to the team that did not touch it last if the ball goes out of bounds after a pass or loose ball.

Balls that go out of bounds off of shots are the possession of the team whose player is closest to the ball at the time. A midline separates the two 55-yard halves in the middle of the field.

Perpendicular to the restraining line, there are two lines 10 yards from the midline to the end line; 15 yards from each sideline perpendicular to the restraining line.

A restraining box must be maintained when a team gains possession after a faceoff. In the restraining box of the opposing team. The ball cannot be moved back to a team’s half of the field. Possession will change after a dead ball is thrown.

3. Time

Four 15-minute periods make up the game. The teams will play sudden death over time if they are tied after four periods, repeating four-minute periods until one team scores. It takes 20 seconds for the team with the ball to advance it over the midline after possession changes, either due to a turnover, saves, or penalty.

Thereafter, the ball must be moved into the restraining box within 10 seconds. Dead balls result in a change of possession if they fail to do this. Lacrosse at the college level has an 80-second shot clock, but at the lower levels, there is no shot clock.

The penalty box also enforces penalties over time. A technical foul and a personal foul are both types of penalties. Personal fouls are fouls that threaten a player’s safety. and they usually result in 1-minute suspension, but they can last longer if the misconduct is severe.

The term “technical foul” refers to fouls that give one team an unfair advantage over the other. An example of a foul like this would be too many men on the field, or grabbing a player or ball with a free hand. There is a 30-second penalty for these offenses.

4. Substitution

In between each team’s bench is a substitution box that measures 20 yards long. No matter if the ball is dead or not, any player who substitutes in or out must go through the substitution box.

The incoming player must step on after the outgoing player steps off if the substitute is to be allowed to sub for the rest of the game. Long stick and faceoff midfielders usually start the faceoff, and both of them substitute off if their team wins the faceoff.

As players run up the field, they are positioned on one side of the substitution box, while the incoming player is positioned on the other side. This can give them a 20-yard advantage.

5. Offsides

By penalizing offsides, crowded sides of the field are prevented. Both teams have 10 players on the field, but they are not free to move around the field as they please.

The offensive side of a team can have up to six players and the defensive side up to seven players. An offsides penalty results if too many players are on each side of the field.

In case of an offsides penalty, the opposing team receives the ball at midfield after the whistle blows to signal a dead ball. Technical fouls are served by midfielders who commit offsides penalties without possession.

6. Stick Checks

The ball can be dislodged by players using their sticks. The following are some examples of defensive checks used by players:

  • It’s when you poke a ball carrier’s stick with the stick like a spear.
  • The ball carrier’s stick is slapped with the head or shaft of the stick you’re swinging.
  • It’s a technique used to disrupt a shot or pass by lifting up the bottom of the ball carrier’s stick with the head.

Defenders who check offensive players in the helmet, or commit checks deemed excessively forceful, will receive a slash, which entails 1 minute in the penalty box.

7. Body Checks

In body checks, the goal is to dislodge the ball or impede the path to the goal of the ball carrier. The body is either done by shoving the ball carrier with your hands on the stick, or by hitting him with your shoulders lowered.

You will likely receive a penalty if you conduct body checks without discipline. Body checks are penalized in two ways: Cross-Check:

  • Having one’s hands spread on the stick and making sure the ball carrier is in the center of one’s hands while checking the shaft.
  • Players who lower their shoulders and collide with an opposing player’s head or neck commit illegal body checks.

Because lacrosse equipment is relatively weakly protected, most body checks in the modern game are penalized.

8. Basic Offensive Sets

Lacrosse’s settled offense is composed of various formations, both of which are strong and weak depending on the defense.

3-2-1: Three midfielders at the top, two attacks on the wings near the goal line, and one attack behind the goal. In youth basketball, this offense is sometimes called an “open set.”

By keeping the heart of the defense vacant, an open set leaves less help for defenders getting beat one-on-one. A 2-1-2-1 formation has two midfielders at the top of each side, one in the middle about 5 yards from the goal, two attackmen on the wings.. and one attackman behind the goal.

Creating two triangles of rotation is the objective of this offense. Cutters rotate opposite or in the same direction as the dodger when one player initiates a dodge. 1-2-1-2: 1 midfielder at the top center, 2 midfielders 5 yards below him on each side of the field, 1 attackman about 5 yards in front of the goal, and 2 attackmen on either flank. A more complicated formation, this one entails quick cuts and off-ball picks.

9. Use of the Free Hand

A free hand is one that is not attached to a stick. Lacrosse does not allow free hands. Only a still position will protect a player from stick checks when they are holding their arm out.

The following should not be done by a player: Touching the ball in any way Pushing off an opposing player… stick Using their arm to obstruct or hold another player Face guarding or holding the arm in a position outside of natural running form If the official calls a ward when a player violates these rules and gives possession to the other team.

10. Goalkeeping

There is a huge difference between the role of the goalkeeper and that of the rest of the team in lacrosse. Firstly, their sticks should be 52-72 inches long. and their heads must be 10-12 inches wide at their widest point in order to save shots effectively.

No player from the opposing team may step inside “the crease,” a circle around the goal line with a 9-foot radius. Following a save, the goalkeeper has four seconds to step out of the crease or toss the ball out. Possession goes to the opposing team if he doesn’t.

The other team gains possession if he steps out and then steps back in with the ball. The goalkeeper’s team will receive the ball at the midline if any player touches him while he is in the crease.

Are you able to fight in lacrosse?

A similar rule applies to box lacrosse as to ice hockey. Major penalties of five minutes are imposed on professional players, not an automatic ejection.

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