by Bill McGlone | October 10, 2018
As we bask in the afterglow of the 2018 NLL Draft and look forward to the impending NLL season, youth lacrosse players across the country wonder whether or not they should tryout for their local box program this fall. The question, "why box?" gets asked by parents more frequently each year. More often than not, this curiosity is met with an answer that goes something like: "box lacrosse will better your field skills." While it is absolutely true that box will improve your speed, agility, stickwork, and toughness in a very transferable manner, box lacrosse is more than just a catalyst to the field game.
Denver Head Coach Bill Tierney once said, "I believe that box lacrosse gives young people many more opportunities to excel in our game. If I had my choice, I would have every player under the age of twelve play box lacrosse exclusively or at least a majority of the time..." Box lacrosse should be respected as a sport in and of itself. With the NLL, Team USA, and youth box programs developing at the grassroots level (like Trilogy's NJ Sixers Club Box Program), opportunities abound for players to excel in the sport.
Here are just 3 reasons you should incorporate box lacrosse in your winter sports schedule this year:
1.) Increased Touches on the Ball: When playing box, players quickly learn that they need to adapt to the tighter playing space. When you don't have 110 x 60 yards to work with, your touches on the ball increase exponentially. When you drop a pass, turn around because the ball is usually right there after it ricochets off the boards, This will also enhance your reaction time.
2.) Become More Physical: Don't be afraid to get physical – crosschecks are legal, the rules are more lenient, and the spacing is much tighter. Offensively, you will have to run through checks and take some hits, but with the appropriate equipment, it will force you to become more powerful and resilient. Defensively, you will have to use your legs and upper body to drive opponents off of their desired path. Whether you're playing offense or defense, box will make you a stronger and more physical player.
3.) Keep Things Fresh: Simply put, box lacrosse is a completely different version of the game. It keeps things fresh, and with the box facility being temperature controlled, weather is never an issue. When you're playing inside a rink, you get a new perspective. Not only does box keep the stick in your hands in the off-season, but it also enhances your stick skills with pinpoint accuracy that can not be simulated in field lacrosse. With box, there are new skills to master!
Bill McGlone is a Trilogy National Director and 8 year veteran of the NLL.
Want to work with Coach McGlone? Join him this winter at our NJ Sixers Club Box Program.