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#LaxHacks: “Nubs” For Defensive Training

0 - Published July 4, 2014 by in Featured, Gear, Lax Hacks, Lifestyle, Training

Editor’s note: Welcome back to another edition of #LaxHacks presented by LAX WAX! In our last episode of, Jeff explained how to cut a lacrosse shaft by splitting a d-pole in two shafts perfect for any attackman (talk about a great way to save $!). Today, you’ll learn how to recycle an old lacrosse shaft by making “nubs” for defensive training. Watch and learn!

Hope you guys are ready to talk a little DEFENSE! Today, I’m going to explain how you can make lacrosse training nubs used to perfect defensive body positioning and footwork in just a few easy steps. This is another great way to recycle an old or broken, men’s or women’s lacrosse shaft.

I was first introduced to nubs about 10 years ago by a Jedi Master named Greg Keyes. Greg was the head coach of the U19 Team Idaho squad at the time, and I was a football-first defenseman headed to college in the fall at my first ever Team Idaho practice.

As is often the case, a lot happened the year I turned 18,  graduated high school and headed out of state for college. In all honesty though, I think one of my key takeaways from the entire summer ended up being the art of making and using lacrosse nubs to strengthen my game!

Up until I became influenced by Greg, who’s originally from Upstate NY, I hadn’t bought into the concept of feet-first defensive play in lacrosse. Heck, I could barely cradle plus all I could throw were rainbows, and I wasn’t the only one! My introduction to nubs led to a belief in Coach Keyes, and he became my lacrosse Yoda.

Low and behold, since I’ve become an experienced coach, I now recognize how valuable that introduction to nubs was for me as lacrosse players and as a future evangelist for the game. Lacrosse is the Creator’s Game, and you cannot be a creator on the field with flat feet!

Things You’ll Need

Below is a complete list of the tools and materials needed to make nubs out of a lacrosse shaft. It shouldn’t be too difficult to scoop ‘em up from your garage or tool shed – just be sure to ask for permission if necessary.

  • One or more used lacrosse shafts or broken lacrosse shafts you’re ready to recycle
  • Tape measure, yard stick or ruler(min. 12 inches in length)
  • Hacksaw (small serrated blades are best for metal)
  • A vise, or in our case, a couple of Adirondack chairs!
  • Sandpaper or a surface for smoothing edges
  • Two end caps
  • Tape (athletic or electrical work great)
Seven Steps to Glory

1. Measure and mark it

When you’re cutting a shaft, the most important thing to remember besides safety is the ever popular mantra,“measure twice, cut once.” Using a tape measure, determine where you want to cut the shaft. Use a permanent marker to mark the spot you plan to initiate your cut. We recommend making nubs approximately 12 inches.

Protip #1: Instead of using a permanent marker, use a piece of tape to mark the placement of the cut. If you take this route, be sure to wrap the tape all the way around the shaft just as if you were taping an end cap on to your lacrosse stick. The tape will serve as guide for you and your saw blade throughout the cutting process.

2. Vise city

We recommend using a bench vise to secure your lacrosse shaft before cutting. However, if you don’t have access to a vise, there are workarounds available. Look no further than the trusty Adirondack Chairs I used in the video!

3. Cut ‘em up

Focus and finesse couldn’t be more important at the cutting stage. Make sure you really focus on keeping the shaft stable as you cut, and keep the saw blade facing away from your body. You may also want to flip the shaft over halfway through as it helps prevent the shaft from unexpectedly snapping in two while you’re finishing out your cut.

4. Smooth the ends

After you hear the satisfying clink of one part of the shaft hitting the floor, take both cut ends and either rub them against the concrete or blacktop, or use some fine grit sandpaper to help knock down the burrs and remaining fragments of metal.

5. Pop on those end caps

Put an end cap on both ends of the nub for protection and so it feels somewhat like a normal lacrosse stick when being used.

6. Add some tape just to be safe

Wrap some tape around each end to fully secure the end caps on. Those are never fun to lose.

7. Get out there and do work!

It takes a great deal of commitment and hard work to be your best, but it’s always worth it in the end. Once you have your nub(s) complete, it’s time to put them to good use!

Protip #2: Another way to think about your lacrosse gear bag is as if it is your own personal toolbox. Throw the nub in your bag so its always accessible if you want to get yourself in a good training routine.

Protip #3: Nubs can be used as a great 1v1 warmup drill during pre-game, specifically early on when you have a few minutes of individual time to prepare. Grab an attackman and ask him to zig-zag in the ally for you at 50%, then %75, and 100%. Or do the same, but instead of zig-zagging down the ally, have him drive from X and focus on getting off your heals.

When it all comes together, it looks a little something like this:

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And that’s how to make nubs for defensive training!

Through #LaxHacks, we aim to help you simplify and element proof your game. In every episode, we share specific tips and pointers that will help you save time, money, and heartache. Balling on a budget, and enjoying the beautiful game of lacrosse… that’s what it’s all about.

Got a hack you want us to share with the world? Chime in below!

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