Men’s Lacrosse Tips: How to Cradle the Ball

Navigating the field with the ball all starts with being able to properly cradle it.

Cradling is a fundamental lacrosse skill and is vital in maintaining possession of the ball.

The first component of cradling is hand placement. Your top hand should be near the head of your stick, and your bottom hand should be near the butt end. Remember to keep your hands roughly shoulder-width apart.

The next component of cradling is stick grip. The stick shaft should rest lightly on your fingertips and palm of your top hand. Your bottom hand should be in a light overhand grip near the butt end of the stick.

When you’re cradling, move the stick in a bicep curl motion, keeping your top wrist flexible. The stick should roll lightly in your bottom hand.

Make sure to hold your stick close to your body but not so close that it restricts mobility. You also don’t want the stick to be too far away, making it vulnerable to stick checks.

Cradling with a long stick is similar to cradling with a short stick. The only difference is your hand placement. Your hands should be choked up on the lacrosse shaft with a long stick in order to give you better control.

Knowing the proper cradling mechanics can help you to maintain possession of the ball. Once you master the fundamentals of cradling, learn to keep your cool when cradling under pressure by a defender.