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Defenseman Stick Flex?

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Old
02-28-2011, 10:35 PM
  #1
BruinsHockey74
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Defenseman Stick Flex?

I am about 5'9 ( I call myself 5'10) and weigh about 165 and am a defenseman. I have been using a 100 flex stick since the beginning of high school (I am now 18 years old). Every time I get one, I cut it a little bit, naturally, and the flex increases making it stiffer. ( I use a bauer one95)

Last month, I was clocked at 80mph on my first shot, and then 81mph on my second (both slap shots).

My question is, being a defenseman, would it be a good idea to switch to say an 85 or 87 flex stick? Will the extra flex increase the strength of my shot? Or since I have been using a 100 for a long time will it make it weaker? I am considered an offensive defenseman so I feel that a little extra whip in my snap shots would help. Will it make puck handling more difficult? Will I feel the stick bend when I touch the puck? What do you think? Thanks.

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02-28-2011, 10:40 PM
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This all depends on your style of play.

I play defense as well but my game is more moving the puck and beating the winger to create odd man situations and drive the slot to look for a quick snap shot or a pass. So I use a 77 flex stick.

A higher flex will usually result in a harder shot, but a flex that is too high for your strength in being able to maximize the flex will be weaken your shot.

At your height and weight I would drop to an 80-87 flex stick.

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02-28-2011, 10:45 PM
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BruinsHockey74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rush22 View Post
This all depends on your style of play.

I play defense as well but my game is more moving the puck and beating the winger to create odd man situations and drive the slot to look for a quick snap shot or a pass. So I use a 77 flex stick.

A higher flex will usually result in a harder shot, but a flex that is too high for your strength in being able to maximize the flex will be weaken your shot.

At your height and weight I would drop to an 80-87 flex stick.
Yeah like I said I've been considered an offensive defenseman since I used to play forward, so I do a lot of same things you mentioned that you do. If I do drop to an 87 flex one95, will puck handling feel different? Will my slap shot suffer in strength? Will I feel like I have no support if I lean on my stick or like if I am battling in the corner?

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02-28-2011, 10:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BruinsHockey74 View Post
Yeah like I said I've been considered an offensive defenseman since I used to play forward, so I do a lot of same things you mentioned that you do. If I do drop to an 87 flex one95, will puck handling feel different? Will my slap shot suffer in strength? Will I feel like I have no support if I lean on my stick or like if I am battling in the corner?
No, an 87 flex stick is not as soft as you think.

It will actually allow you to receive harder passes easier and you will have a harder wrist and snap shot with the lower flex.

Chances are at your weight your slap shot will increase in velocity as well because I doubt at 165 lbs that you are getting everything you can from a 100 flex stick.

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03-01-2011, 09:18 AM
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Jarick
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At your height, you're probably in the 75-85 flex recommendations. I'd certainly give it a shot. You would need to slow your swing down to let the stick flex do some work.

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03-01-2011, 10:32 AM
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SouthpawTRK
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BruinsHockey74 View Post
I am about 5'9 ( I call myself 5'10) and weigh about 165 and am a defenseman. I have been using a 100 flex stick since the beginning of high school (I am now 18 years old). Every time I get one, I cut it a little bit, naturally, and the flex increases making it stiffer. ( I use a bauer one95)

Last month, I was clocked at 80mph on my first shot, and then 81mph on my second (both slap shots).

My question is, being a defenseman, would it be a good idea to switch to say an 85 or 87 flex stick? Will the extra flex increase the strength of my shot? Or since I have been using a 100 for a long time will it make it weaker? I am considered an offensive defenseman so I feel that a little extra whip in my snap shots would help. Will it make puck handling more difficult? Will I feel the stick bend when I touch the puck? What do you think? Thanks.
I would recommend to going to a slightly lower flex; mid eighties flex would be a good place to start.

I am recommending this because it would behoove a offense minded defenseman. I mean guys like Dan Boyle are probably using a 100+ flex, but then again he's in the show.

If you indeed try a lower flex, that main thing I would recommend is that you give it a fighting chance. Don't take it out to one or two stick and puck sessions or gauge it on one or two games. Use it as much as you can; whether it's a stick/puck or game time. Basically you want to make it your main stick for a couple of months to get used to the softer flex. Like Jarick said, you will need to slow your swing down a bit to let the flex do some work.

Best of luck with going with a lower flex!

FWIW, I play defense and use a 75 flex (about 80'ish after I cut it) and I'm the same height as you (just a bit wider , about 20lbs heavier)


Last edited by SouthpawTRK: 03-05-2011 at 11:26 AM.
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Old
03-01-2011, 12:07 PM
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blueberrydanish
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I weigh about 175 and have been using a 87 flex for a good bit now and love it for my slappers and just everything. Going from 100 flex is something youll definitely have to get use to..cause your stick and shots will prob feel different.

Obviously a 80mph slapper is nothing to be ashamed of...but as many have, Id definitely recommend trying a lower flex and give it a shot for awhile, see if you notice any improvements.

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Old
03-01-2011, 02:20 PM
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SERE 24
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Try an 87.

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Old
03-02-2011, 01:00 AM
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Im 5.8 187 lbs and im pretty strong and i hated my 85 flex stick, had 75 it was perfect, now since i broke my 75 i cant get a new one so i got a 65 flex, and i shoot much better with the 65 than the 85. you really feel the stick doing the work.

75 flex is perfect for slaps,wristers,snaps, puck handeling.

So go with 75-85 flex.

But again its all in the technique how you can handle different stick flexes.

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03-02-2011, 08:09 PM
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I'm 5'8", 155lbs and I've found that when I switched from a 87 flex to a 67 flex (an intermediate stick) that I started shooting much harder. I'm not a particularly good player, but I can actually utilize the flex in the stick way better than I could before.

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03-03-2011, 01:53 PM
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I'm relatively new to the game a defenseman 6'4" 265, and I started off playing with a 100 flex stick. I saw a dramatic increase in my shooting ability after dropping to a 72 flex stick. It really taught me the mechanics of shooting and how to work with the stick to get the most on a shot.

Wristers naturally became a lot better, but I even feel like I'm getting a bit more on my slapshots simply because I can feel the stick flexing when I make contact with the ice behind the puck properly.

Eventually I'm sure I'll break the 72 as I learn to throw more and more weight into the shot, and I'll move to something a little bit stiffer, but the lessons learned in shooting mechanics and feel have been fantastic. I know know what a proper shot should feel like.

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03-05-2011, 12:27 AM
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The rule of thumb I was taught when I was younger was take your body weight, cut it in half, and that is the flex you should use. However, there are obviously exceptions (Ovi evidently loves those 75 flex sticks). I'm also 165 and have been using an 85 (87 in Bauer) since I was in high school and wouldn't change a thing.

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03-05-2011, 01:04 AM
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noobman
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The belief is that defensemen take more slapshots, so they generally benefit from stiffer sticks.

At 6'2 210lb I get a slight boost on my slapshot with a 100 flex stick, but have much better overall shooting (slightly slower slapper, much faster wrister) with an 87 flex. A guy your size probably shouldn't be using a 100 flex, especially if you're cutting the stick down.

80mph is pretty damn fast for a highschool player's slapshot though...

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03-05-2011, 01:28 AM
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ponder
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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 01:38 AM.
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Old
03-05-2011, 03:30 AM
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The " I have a stiff stick so im cool thing " is old. Ill bet that 70-85% would shoot alot better slaps with a whippier stick than what they have.

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03-05-2011, 01:39 PM
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i'm about the same size and really love torquing my stick. I use a 100 flex but ive been thinking about switching myself to something lower. I guess it's worth a shot..

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03-06-2011, 09:46 AM
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If you do end up trying an 80ish flex stick. It's probably a good idea to make sure you take the 100 flex out as well so you could compare.

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03-10-2011, 09:32 PM
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First off, thank you everyone for the feedback that you have given. It has really made me think more about dropping my flex, especially with how expensive the sticks are today.

Ok, so basically everyone here says to try the 87 flex.

Unfortunately, the guys on my team with 87 flex sticks are either lefty's or too big for me...so I really can't try it out. I just want to make sure because I am probably going tomorrow to get a Total One and I am thinking about the 87 flex that everyone is suggesting. I just don't want to buy it and then say to myself that I really suck with this thing, because like I've said, I do not know how it is going to feel, especially being a defenseman where I have to be strong on my stick more often than forwards would.

I am hoping that I won't lose anything on my slap shot, if anything increase the velocity, and from what I have heard/read here is that my wrister and snappers will be quicker. Do I have to change technique for that? Or will the stick just do the work on those? I have been playing hockey my whole life so the proper technique really isn't the issue. In other words, without being cocky, I know how to shoot. Thanks and hopefully a few can answer my remaining questions from this post.

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03-11-2011, 02:08 AM
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I would choose the stick based on what you do most on the ice - stickhandling, passing, shooting, slashing - and then go with the flex that you are most comfortable with doing it. I am an offensive and puck moving D-man in a no contact rec league so my main duty on the ice is passing the puck once we gain possesion. I lead the rush with my outlet passes, to do that best I choose a low 77 flex stick since I really like the whippiness of the stick for those long saucer passes to the breaking wings.

My shot could be harder with a higher flex, but my overall game would probably suffer. I dont need to stickhandle much at all so lag with a lower flex while stickhandling does not affect me. I still have a good shot and I actually really like to feel my one95 flex and snap back into form when I take a slapper. I can tell from the feel of the stick if the shot is a good one or a blunder.

Anyhow, shot speed is not the end all be all thing to choose a flex for.

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03-11-2011, 09:26 AM
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Well you'll never really know until you try. You may have to slow down your shot a bit and focus on pushing through the shot with your bottom hand, but if you've got good technique as it sounds like you do, stick with it.

Another option is to find a used stick on Craigslist or pick up a pro stock model for cheaper.

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03-11-2011, 11:51 AM
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Well for the TotalOne my view is dont spend 200$ on a stick unless you are 99% sure youll like it.

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03-21-2011, 11:11 PM
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i play d and i use bauer 102 flex sticks

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Old
03-22-2011, 08:56 AM
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I play D, I'm 6'3 and 240+lbs, I use a 102 flex.

Anything under a 100 flex and I feel like I'm using one of those plastic ball sticks you used in grade school gym class. I fully realize that 100+ flex isn't for everyone though... anyone under 200lbs probably aren't getting enough weight on the shot at that flex, and would definitely benefit from a less rigid stick.

I'm currently using a Nike/Bauer One85 that Bauer sent me as a replacement when their POS crap stick shattered the first game I used it... too bad they don't make the One85 anymore (and too bad it's such an expensive stick), it's my favorite stick of all time.

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07-22-2012, 03:54 PM
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if i can shoot 80 mph on a slapshot and from 65-70 mph on my wrist/snapshots consistently with a 85 flex stick, should i drop down to the 77 flex? i play wing/centre so i want to get my snap/wristers harder

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07-22-2012, 06:56 PM
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Yeah, get the 77-87 flex.
If you already know how to shoot, then you'll probably need little time to adjust.

One of the advantage you'll notice immediately is that you will conserve energy, because like Jarick said, you'll need to slow down your swing so the stick will do its job.

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