Lacrosse, a sport as old as the Native American civilizations that birthed it, thrives on skill, agility, and strategy. Defense in Lacrosse, especially the cross check hold, requires a blend of impeccable technique and raw strength. This move, a cornerstone in every defenseman’s arsenal, centers around a trifecta of essential components, ignited by the goalie’s communication to repel the attacker.
01. Importance of Footwork in Lacrosse
Footwork, the inaugural act in the three-part cross check hold, might seem like an odd place to start. Yet, in the gritty world of Lacrosse, your feet are your compass, directing your strategy and laying the groundwork for defense. A ceaseless dance ensues as you jostle with the attacker, using rapid, deliberate movements to position yourself advantageously.
Your footwork forms the heartbeat of your defensive stance, driving the ebb and flow of your movements. Here, your feet transform into skilled dancers, the Fred Astaire or Mikhail Baryshnikov of the Lacrosse world. Their job? To help you soar above the attacker, positioning you strategically to unleash the next step of your defense.
02. Hands-Away Approach
The hands-away approach, the second chapter in the cross check hold saga, mirrors the principles of push and pull. You create a personal buffer, a space between your body and the attacker, a distance that gives you the upper hand, a territory to control.
By driving your hands into the attacker’s armpit, you become the puppeteer in this high-stakes marionette show. Your goal is simple yet crucial: drive him away from the goal. Establishing this physical control relegates the attacker to your defensive whims, steering him away from the potential scoring area.
03. Mastering Stick Position
If footwork is the rhythm and hands-away the melody, the stick position is the harmony that completes this lacrosse symphony. The third act in this performance involves wielding your stick at a 45-degree angle, applying continuous pressure on the attacker.
Think of a soldier holding his shield at a calculated angle, withstanding the onslaught of a barrage. This shield, your lacrosse stick, becomes a line of defense and a tool of tactical pressure. The goal here is not only to block but also to dominate, making your opponent capitulate to the relentless pressure.
With the foundational trio of the cross check hold in place, the defensive spell is ready to be cast. Now, you neutralize the scoring threat, concluding the act with the show-stopping finale: a poke or slap check.
Journey from Novice to Veteran
Like a gladiator in the arena, your ultimate aim is to vanquish the opponent in your one-on-one matchup. When the footwork-hands-away-stick position trio becomes second nature, your ability to win these matchups can increase dramatically.
Interestingly, reports from lacrosse studies suggest that proficient execution of core defensive strategies like the cross check hold can potentially boost success rates by up to 40% in one-on-one scenarios. Remember, the cross check hold isn’t just a defensive maneuver. It’s a winning formula.
Advanced Techniques: The Road to Mastery
As you become adept at defending the goal using the basic principles, it’s time to elevate your game. A seasoned player does not remain confined to the basics; he expands his repertoire, becoming a formidable force on the field.
Consider exploring advanced techniques, like the famed ding dong check. Much like an experienced chess player would employ the Sicilian Defense or the Queen’s Gambit, a seasoned lacrosse player makes use of these advanced checks. As you perfect these techniques, they become more than just moves. They become your signature, your personal brand on the field.
The Symphony of Cross Check Hold
Mastering the cross check hold is akin to orchestrating a symphony. Your feet, hands, and stick position are the instrumentalists, and when they synchronize perfectly, they create a harmonious defense that’s tough to breach.
So, tie your laces, grab your stick, don your helmet, and step onto the verdant battlefield, ready to command your symphony of defense. When the cross check hold becomes second nature, you’re not just playing lacrosse; you’re creating a spectacle, a masterful show of skill, strategy, and strength.