To the fan, lacrosse is a game of finesse and skill, but to the player, it's those two attributes plus strength, guts, and sweat. It demands great speed as well as endurance, skills, footwork and strength. For 60 minutes, you are expected to run up and down a field, longer than 100 yards, and be able to coordinate your arms well enough to use a stick to catch a ball, cradle it, throw fakes, dodges, passes, and shots, and to do so with both hands. Defensively, you are expected to keep your arms up in the air holding a stick and keeping a strong defensive stance, while performing defensive runs (body and shoulders facing in one direction while feet facing 90 degrees to another direction), crossover steps, and side-shuffles. Defensively, you must always be on your toes, ready to spring into action, because one single lapse of physical or mental concentration can mean the difference between a championship and a tearful bus-ride home. And with any sport, if you are not in top shape physically, your mental game will suffer.
We start on Tuesday.