How to choose?
The Basics of a Floorball Stick
In this section, we will cover the basics of a floorball stick. This is important because if you want to know how to choose a floorball stick, you have to know the different parts of the stick. A normal floorball stick consists out of three separate parts which all can be replaced.
Floorball is a fast, dynamic team sport and with that come light sticks. Complete floorball sticks weigh usually between 170-250 grams of which the blade weighs 70-80 grams. Most sticks are made of composite material and the more expensive ones have layers of carbon or fiber.The price of a stick is, for the most part, depending on the materials used to fabricate the shaft. In general, you can say that the lighter the shaft, the higher the cost.
Just like with hockey a player can put pressure on his stick to load power to his shot. This means that the stick needs to be flexible to a certain degree. This ‘certain degree’ is called the flex of a stick and is measured in millimeter.
Floorball stick flex
So what exactly is this flex? Take a look at the picture below:
The flex of a stick is the number of millimeters a stick will bend under the pressure of 30kg. That means the higher the flex, the easier it will bend. Further in this article, we will give you advice on what flex will suit you best as a beginner (spoiler: 29-32mm).
A blade is another important element of a stick and has two different variables – apart from the wide variety of colors you can purchase them in.
IMPORTANT: You will notice there are left and right sticks as well as blades and you may wonder if you need a left or a right stick. If you order a RIGHT stick/blade, it means your lower hand is your RIGHT hand. If you buy a floorball stick which is LEFT, your LEFT hand will be the lower hand. The biggest tip on how to choose a floorball stick? Buy at least the right side.Plastic
A floorball blade is made of plastic but you’d be surprised to find out how many different varieties of plastic are on the floorball market. We don’t want to overwhelm you with all the different kinds of plastic and technical details but instead keep it short and simple.
Soft : these blades are soft on the touch and you will feel a noticeable difference because the ball doesn’t bounce off the blade easily. However, when shooting hard a soft blade is less accurate, for example with a slapshot.
Medium : these are the all-around blades and constitute the majority of the blades. Most professionals play with an MB because it offers the best playability in combination with a strong blade.
Hard : with a hard blade the ball is controlled less easily but some players prefer this kind of blades because the blade is tougher and can withstand more force. If you are a bodybuilder that just started with floorball, perhaps check this out after you broke your first blade.
The shape of a blade is often neglected by beginners, simply because they don’t have the experience to know which blade works for them or not. This is a huge waste as the choice of a good blade can make the life of a floorball beginner much easier. Conversely, a bad blade can make your learning curve a steep one, if it makes everything you want to do much harder.
Don’t get me wrong, there are no ‘good’ and ‘bad’ blades quality-wise but there are worse and better choices for you personally that suits your level and playing style.
Let’s have a look at some different blades to see what I mean:
Some professional players, like the Norwegian veteran Ketel Kronberg, like their blade as straight as a die. Although he is perhaps an extreme example, this blade suits his physical playing style very well, as he can move as easily on the forehand as on the backhand, making him hard to stop for defensemen. Can you spot the difference? This blade is much more concaved and the backhand and forehand side is much easier to distinguish between. It also opens up possibilities for fierce sweepershots.
IMPORTANT: Because of safety concerns, the brand of the shaft and the blade has to match. While it’s perfectly fine to change the blade of your stick to a different blade of the same brand, it’s not allowed to change the blade to that of another brand.
GripThe grip is another element that is somewhat forgotten quite easily. It is perhaps the last important part of a stick but for now, our recommendation of changing your grip once a while will suffice.
Now that we have covered the basics of a floorball stick, it’s time to get some hands-on pointers about how to choose your first floorball stick before moving on to our recommendations.
What You Should Look for as a Beginner
Next in this guide on how to choose a floorball stick, we will discuss some pointers for buying the right stick. As a beginner, you need a different stick than intermediate or advanced players. Let these pointers guide you towards buying your first floorball stick.
It’s important to choose the right length when buying a floorball stick. A general rule of thumb is that your floorball stick has to reach your belly button when it’s standing up straight. However, some players like their stick a bit longer than this and others feel better playing when their floorball stick is a bit shorter. This preference will slowly surface over the years. In the meanwhile, you can use this chart to see which floorball stick length would be on average the best fit for you:
A useful chart to pick the correct stick length
Note that stick can be customized (made on your size)
A blade that suits you
We talked about blades before and briefly discussed that they differ mostly in terms of plastic and shape. There are a number of floorball brands selling floorball equipment and all sell different sticks and have different blades.
All of the brands sell different blades for different playing styles ranging from very shoot-heavy blades to more straight and all-round floorball blades.
That’s why I don’t recommend one single brand. You may have heard teammates who swear by one particular floorball brand and of course this is fine. However, it’s good to know that at the start of your floorball journey, it’s not gonna make a difference which brand you choose. In short, all brands will do fine as long as they are IFF Certified. As you continue on your floorball path you may vibe better with one brand and decide to stick to it.
For now, however, it’s far more important to focus on the technical details of the blade, rather than who manufactured it. But don’t worry, we keep it simple.
When it comes to blades we recommend either an all-round blade or a shooting blade. An all-round blade has a medium concavity to help you with your shots but still keeps your passes low while a shooting blade has a larger concavity which will help you a lot with your shots. Because in our experience beginners tend to have a hard time shooting on goal and getting the ball off the floor, a blade that helps you at the start of your floorball career will be a helpful tool.
Passing and shooting are essential components of floorball and getting the hang of those floorball skills should come first. What blades are we talking about?
- OXDOG – Razor (all-round), Avox (shooter),Optilight (touch and control) ,FSL (touch and shooter)
- EXEL- X Blade (all-around), Ice (shooter), E-fect (touch and shooter)
- FATPIPE – Orc (all-round), Jab (shooter)
The International Floorball Federation is the ruling body that governs the national federations and plays an important role in the development of floorball. They also concern themselves with the safety regulations of their players and one way they do this is by only allowing IFF Certified equipment in “official” floorball games.
Of course, this isn’t necessary if you want to play on the street with some friends but your aspirations are of course higher than that. If you want to play in any national tournament or competition it’s mandatory to have an IFF Certified stick.
The good news is that all popular brands have their sticks IFF approved – and of course all of our recommendations too. However, beware that the penalty of playing with illegal equipment is harsh and will lead to a red card during play.
IFF Approved Certified Equipment logo:
Not sure about if your stick is IFF Certified Equipment? Try to find this logo, it should be somewhere. Most of the time you’ll find it.
Don’t Overdo it for Your First Stick
Just like in any sports there are different classes in the material. Soccer shoes range from €15 all the way to €300+, you can buy hockey skates for €90 but also €900 and tennis rackets range from €25-450. Floorball is no exception to this although the costs of playing our sport nearly don’t come close to the aforementioned sports.
However, there is a danger that you overdo your first stick. Right now, the most expensive stick on the market is the Unihoc Carbskin Curve and this top-of-the-line product sells for around €210. The sticks main strength is its weight which some(!) professional players find very important.
For a beginner, we would recommend a cheaper stick. Here are some reasons why this makes sense.
You save a lot of money
Floorball is a beginner-friendly sport when it comes to products. The lightest stick cost a lot of money but producers make sure to friendly price the heavier sticks because they cost much less in research costs.
Take advantage of this for your first stick.
The sticks are sturdierIn the last couple of years, we saw the stick producers fight a public battle who could make the lightest stick of the market. This is of course a positive thing but especially in the early days, the lightest sticks on the market broke relatively easily. Since then, the stick brands have come a long way in adding strength as an important factor as well.
The rule of thumb still stands: heavier, cheaper sticks break less easily than lighter, more expensive ones.
Floorball is a beautiful elegant sport, but as a beginner to floorball you will see yourself getting slashed a lot. The last thing you want is your new precious stick to break on the first time.
It Won’t Make much of a Difference Anyway
Maybe the most important reason is that it will not matter a lot anyway. Since you have just started playing you will not really benefit from the decreased weight.
Have a lot of fun.
Credits: Floorball today