Defenseman Stick Flex?
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03-05-2011, 01:28 AM
Join Date: Jul 2007
I'm 6' 180 lbs, work out/reasonably strong, 24 years old, I've been playing hockey at a variety of levels since I was 8, I'm certainly not a star but I definitely know how to get my weight into a shot, and I still shoot best (especially wristers/snappers, but slappers too) with a whip flex stick (75/77). Everyone is different, a 5'6" guy on my beer league team has an unreal shot with his 100 flex stick cut down to god knows what (he's an ex junior A player though), but for the most part I'd say that the vast majority of 5'9", 165 lb players would shoot better with a 75-85ish flex stick than a 100 flex stick. Sure a lot of NHL dmen use 100 flex sticks, but they're often around 6'2", 220 lbs, with absolutely unreal technique. In general for normal sized/skilled people I feel that a lower flex stick works best, I think the vast majority of average sized hockey players will see their shot degrade when going above an 85/87 flex.
On the other hand, if you really shoot at 80 mph, you have a pretty nice slapper. I definitely believe that although size/weight plays a fairly large role in how much you flex a stick, technique is even more important, so you might be one of those rare smaller guys who actually shoots better with a really stiff stick. Like I said I know a play with a 5'6" who shoots best with a 100 flex stick, simply because he REALLY knows how to get his full body/weight into a shot. Basically anyone will shoot hardest with the stiffest stick that they can flex very significantly, if you get a lot of flex with a 100 flex stick then it's probably fine for you. If you feel like you're getting minimal flex out of the stick, then you'd benefit from moving to a lower flex stick (once you adjust to that lower flex, which could take a few ice times).
One last point, practice is different from a game. When practicing, with all the time in the world, I can get a real nice flex out of 85 flex sticks (or probably even stiffer, though I've never gone above 85/87). But under pressure, in game, it's often tougher to really get my weight into my shot in the same way I would when properly setting up, so I find that my in game shot is quite a bit better with a 75 flex, though my shot in practice is similar with a 75 or 85 flex.
Last edited by ponder: 03-05-2011 at
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