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5 Keys to Having a Good Lacrosse Tryout

Editor’s Note: A former two-sport DI athlete at Fairfield University, Kelly has dedicated his life to building better lacrosse athletes, on and off of the field. Sean contributes regularly from his state-of-the-art Sports and Mental Preparation Facility in New Jersey. Take it from here, Sean!

Main Photo Credit: Larry Palumbo,!

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With the season upon us and the lacrosse tryout process starting this week, I am constantly asked by athletes I coach what they can do to have a successful tryout and make the team.

Here are some helpful hints:

1) Prepare

This is the most important hint and really leads to a lot of the others. If you have not already started this one yet it is never too late but you may be in for a long tryout weekend.

Failing to Prepare is Preparing to Fail.

You don’t make the team in a two-day tryout. You make the team in the months leading up to the tryout; in the weight room, running sprints, playing wall ball and shooting on your own in the cold.

2) Relax and Have Fun

Take a deep breath and think about how hard you worked this off-season. There is no reason to be nervous. This is your reward for all the hard work you put in.

Go get what is yours. At the end of the day, who you are as a lacrosse player does not define who you are as a person. Go out there and have a blast playing the game you love, but try to keep things in perspective.

3) “Next Play”

Brown lacrosse tryout snow practice

Lacrosse is a fast, physical, unrelenting game that demands a high level of skill to play. You are going to make mistakes; it is part of the game.

If you do make a mistake accept that fact and realize it is not the mistake that counts in the coaches eyes but how you handle the “next play” after the mistake. Take a deep breath, evaluate what you could have done better on the play and move on to the next one.

4) Come Early and Stay Late

My college football coach would tell us everyday,

to be early is to be on time, to be on time is to be late and to be late is to be forgotten.

You never want to feel rushed. Make sure you leave yourself plenty of time to get your equipment on, have a quick catch and get loose. I suggest going through the same warm up process that you did all off-season while working out. Following this familiar routine should calm any nerves you may have going into the tryout.

When the first day of tryouts is over, I suggest staying after practice for about 15 minutes and practicing anything that you may have been corrected on during the tryout so you can improve before the next round of tryouts.

5) Be the First Player In-Line for Every Drill

Enthusiasm is the purest form of gratitude. There is no better way to show how grateful you are for this opportunity than by enthusiastically running from drill to drill.

Coach’s constantly encourage their athletes to run don’t walk, show some enthusiasm, and hustle. You will exhibit all of these traits simply by making sure you are the first player on line in every drill.

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All athletes at SKPC have learned these tips at one point or another, now it is time for you to put them into action. Good luck guys and girls and thanks for giving me your very best this off-season.