Finding the Right Hockey Stick For You


The hockey stick is one of the most vital and recognizable pieces of equipment in the game -- with a twig in your hands the game can be played anywhere (literally), and having the right stick can elevate your play. It's important to consider the size, material, and weight of the stick, as well your skill level, before making a decision. Finding the right stick can be a journey, and ultimately "which hockey stick will work best for my game?" is a preference question. 

For those still trying to find the “one”, take a look below at some industry guidelines to consider when picking out your next twig.

Composite vs ABS Wood 

ABS Wood blades and sticks are designed for play on rough surfaces such as asphalt and cement base rinks.

  • Typically used outdoors for foot, roller, and recreational hockey.
  • The materials in the blade allow the blade to wear down smoothly over time, minimizing chipping and holes forming on the blade from the rough surfaces.
  • Made of much heavier materials. 

Composite blades and sticks make up the majority of today's market. These sticks are designed for smooth surfaces such as ice, sport court, tile, and waxed wood. Composite sticks are made up of strong, lightweight materials such as carbon and fiberglass, woven together leaving a hollow shaft. This allows the sticks to be light and durable and increases the stick's ability to flex. 


Flex is the amount of bend a hockey stick has when pressure is applied to the blade. A composite hockey stick is designed to have specific flex properties that enable the player to get the most out of their shots. The flex of a hockey stick affects the speed and power of a shot. It is important to choose the correct flex for your playing style and body size to maximize your stick’s performance. 

A general rule of thumb is to go with a flex closest to half your body weight. For example a 160lb player would be best suited with a 75-77 flex. 

Age Group Height Weight (lbs) Recommended Flex
Youth (3-5) 3'0"-3'10" 30-65 35
Youth (6-8) 3'10"-4'8" 50-80 40/45
Junior (7-13) 4'4"-5'1" 70-110 50/55
Intermediate (11-14) 4'11"-5'4" 95-125 60
Intermediate (12-14) 5'2"-5'8" 100-140 65/70
Senior (14+) 5'5"-5'10" 125-175 75/80
Senior (14+) 5'7"-6'1" 150-200 85/90/95
Senior (14+) 5'10"-6'4" 180-235 100/105
Senior (14+) 6'1"+ 210+ 110/115

Players can move up and down flex. Moving down flex will make the stick less stiff and require less effort or pressure from the player but limit overall power. Moving up flex will require more effort and pressure from the player but will raise the shot power potential. 


Composite sticks primarily come in 3 flex points. This describes the area of the shaft that will flex when taking a shot. Each having its own benefit. 

Low kick point - Flex occurs in the bottom third of the shaft toward the blade. Designed to load and release energy fast resulting in a quicker shot and pass. 

(Bauer Vapor, CCM Ribcor, Warrior Covert, True HZRDUS) 

Mid kick point - Flex occurs in the middle third of the shaft. While shooting this allows the energy to travel up to the middle of the shaft before releasing back through the blade. This results in a slower release time but more powerful shots and passes. The mid kick is a good compromise of release speed for power. 

(Bauer Nexus, CCM Jetspeed, Warrior Alpha, True Catalyst) 

High kick point - Flex occurs in the top third of the shaft closer to the player’s top hand. Designed to maximize power by creating the largest load area for energy transfer. This results in slower release times as it takes longer for the energy to travel through the stick to the blade. 

(Bauer Supreme) 

All three kick points provide players with greater control of their shots and passes. The best kick point will depend on the player's preference and playing style. 

Blade Pattern/Curve 

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Mid-Curve – this blade pattern has a slight pocket curve in the middle of the blade that allows for great control and accuracy when shooting and passing the puck. It is one of the most popular blade patterns among all levels of players due to its easy control. (Bauer P88, CCM P88, Warrior W88, True MC) 

Heel Curve – this blade pattern has a curve closer to the heel of the blade that allows for a bigger surface area on shots for contact. Great for slap shots and backhand shots. (Bauer PM9, Warrior W01, True HCS) 

Toe Curve – this blade pattern has a curved toe and a relatively flat heel. It is popular among players who prefer to take shots from the toe of the stick, allowing more shots from close and out front of the body. Ideal for toe drags and puck lift. (Bauer P28, CCM P28, Warrior W28,True TC4) 


After you find the flex range you want to be in, you will want to consider the length of the stick. In most brands, the length of the stick will increase as flex increases in models offered. You can cut or extend your stick to better suit your height and playstyle. General consensus for finding stick length is to have the stick standing straight up, parallel to your body, the top of the stick shaft should end between the tip of the nose and the bottom of the chin. Important to note that when cutting or extending a stick, you will affect the flex. For every inch cut off the stick will increase the stiffness or flex by about 3 and for every inch extended will result in the stick being less stiff decreasing the flex by about 3. For example a 75 flex cut down 2 inches would play more like an 81 flex. A longer stick will often result in more ice contact at the heel of the blade. Shorter sticks often result in more ice contact at the toe of the blade. 

About the Author

As the assistant manager of a hockey shop, Tommy has helped thousands of young athletes find the perfect stick. He loves hockey and is a lifelong Philly sports fan.