Can You Play Lacrosse in the Rain? Fun or No Fun? (2023 Update)

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Ah, the never-ending debate: Can you play lacrosse in the rain?

While opinions on this question have been divided since the game's inception centuries ago, it's time to set the record straight.

Here we explore how playing lacrosse in inclement weather has changed over the years and why it doesn't have to put a damper on your game-day fun.

From modern developments that make rain days much safer and strategies for staying focused and sticking with your training plan, we've got tips for thriving when Mother Nature throws her worst at you.


Take Away Key Points:

  • Similar to various sports, lacrosse can also be played in the rain
  • The only exceptions are when there is a threat of thunderstorm/lightning or severe injuries to players
  • There are multiple tricks to follow and take your team play to the next level if you master the rainy season

Playing Lacrosse Game in the Rain: Mission (Im)possible?

Lacrosse games can take place in bad weather conditions, just like football, soccer, and other sports. The main reason is that adverse weather conditions cannot affect the game or lacrosse players.

And although the playing conditions might not be ideal, several methods improve lacrosse's resistance to such weather elements.

So, read below to find the crucial factors to deal with rainy conditions for the ultimate fun on the field.

1. Can you play lacrosse in the rain? Yes! Why?

Multiple advantages allow playing lacrosse in the rain without affecting the lacrosse game or the players. Some of them include:

- Lacrosse equipment is weatherproof

- Injury risks do not increase while playing during rainy games

- Shooting accuracy may be difficult, but not impossible

- You can perform all other movements

a. Lacrosse stick & protective equipment is water-resistant

Lacrosse equipment is made to withstand all wet conditions. So players don't need to worry about excess water and the protective gear failing, as the rain is pouring down on the equipment, especially the stick and lacrosse helmet.

In addition, a lacrosse stick contains a head and shaft, which are waterproof. A lacrosse stick has metal or carbon fiber; water cannot break through the material. Additionally, lacrosse stick mesh is more durable, and lacrosse sticks generally cannot break so soon.

On the other hand, the protective gear during the rain game will absorb external forces and impacts and protect you from opponents.

Even though arm pads, gloves, and shoulder pads might absorb excess moisture for long periods, they will protect you from heavier impacts. Players can still perform sharp cuts to dodge and score points.

can you play lacrosse in the rain

b. Reduced risks of injuries

Injuries and worsened health conditions are not an imminent threat in wet conditions (unlike in extreme heat), so lacrosse is different from baseball here. But, a lower leg injury might occur if you don't follow the rules.

However, the artificial turf allows full speed and movements for practice and play without worries. Still, if there is a higher chance of severe injuries, it would be best to stop the game.

c. Shooting accuracy is challenging but possible

Playing lacrosse in the rain favors defense rather than offense, as precise shooting might be challenging. The additional slickness of the lacrosse ball due to excess moisture also aggravates the conditions.

In addition, the waterproof mesh releases the ball faster from the pocket than usual. And the moisture in lacrosse sticks also increases the issues.

Due to these weather conditions, the players must throw balls higher than average, and the attackers might not shoot the ball accurately.

d. Other movements are still possible

Other lacrosse actions, such as cradling, passing, dodging, catching, checking, etc., are still possible when playing lacrosse in the rain.

Because lacrosse mesh is still functional when wet, it can withstand rain. Of course, playing all tricks goes less smoothly than in better weather, but it is still possible.

2. Playing lacrosse in adverse weather conditions: Disadvantages

Safety is the number #1 concern for players, coaches, and other experts in lacrosse games. For this reason, several factors must be considered before the referees and other officials decide whether it is safe to continue with the game.

Some of them include the following:

- The presence or threat of lightning

- Swampy field conditions

a. The threat of lightning

The games must be stopped immediately as soon as there is even the slightest presence of lightning. This is because players carry long metal sticks in the air, with no other tall objects on an open field. Everyone must stop potentially severe injuries in such extreme conditions.

what time of year is lacrosse played

b. Marshy field conditions

This is another situation when the lacrosse game must be stopped in wet weather. The surface turns muddy when playing on a grass field, so it's too hard for players to get proper footing. Such weather also ruins lacrosse mesh.

During heavy rains, turf fields may also become boggy, so referees might delay or cancel the play. They can reschedule it for another day when the weather is warm and dry.

3. How often can you play lacrosse in the rain?

Playing a game of lacrosse in rainy conditions can also depend on the area where you live. For instance, Southwest has few rainy seasons, so practice and playing sessions are more frequent. On the other hand, the midwest areas have more rainy days, so game sessions might often be canceled, especially in March and April.

However, this is not an issue for the box lacrosse version in tight spaces. Playing box lacrosse is possible even in winter months, as the season covers winter and spring. And due to indoor playing fields, the bad weather cannot do anything to affect the game or players.

For this reason, also many field players transfer to the closed field during the off-season in the winter months to practice more and improve their stick skills when the bad weather elements don't allow the field version of the game.

4. Should you practice lacrosse in the rain?

There will be at least one lacrosse game during the rain, so it might be beneficial for you to practice lacrosse in the rain, especially if you're an attacker.

Although rain is more beneficial to defense (they do not have to shoot at all), mastering the shooting skills in the rain will only boost your confidence, and you can become a dominant player in all weather elements.

Conversely, if you practice your speed, precision, and strength only in warm weather, you will be useless when things get extreme. So, various experts recommend practicing lacrosse in bad weather conditions to improve their performance even more.

In addition, it would be beneficial to call your team for team bonding during a rainy season, as you can learn to enjoy playing lacrosse in all weather elements. Of course, you can also avoid more scrimmage play once you play a real lacrosse match during the rain and score more points due to better cooperation.

You can also exercise with a backup stick in the cold rain to protect your main lacrosse mesh in bad weather. Although lacrosse pockets are durable, they might still deform over time, so that a backup stick will prolong the further use of your original stick.

5. Valuable tips for playing lacrosse in wet conditions

dangers of playing in the rain

Repetition is crucial to improve your lacrosse game and to prove yourself a valuable player. However, below you can find some beneficial tips to help you take your game to the next level.

  • Keeping your lacrosse stick away from the rain before the play - you can play with a backup lacrosse stick to keep your main pocket dry. Once the gear gets wet, it needs more time to dry, and if you don't have a blow dryer, your pocket and shaft will be hard to hold firmly. However, few players use this trick, so once the play starts and everyone carries a wet stick and pocket, you can perform better with your dry gear.
  • Aiming slightly lower than you intended - your gear will throw higher in the rain, thanks to the slickness of the lacrosse pocket and ball. Instead, you need to aim lower to send the ball at your target spot. It would be best to do a warm-up first. But if you notice a pocket bagging out to a lower depth, then you must aim higher than normal to oppose the effect. Finally, you can tighten or loosen the bottom string of the pocket to make the stick throw higher or lower.
  • Shortening the distance between passes - since rain makes your throws less consistent, you can shorten the passes during the play. The longer the pass is, the harder it might be to send it to the correct location. So it would be best if you used leg movement to get closer to your teammate before passing. You should also adjust your speed to avoid possible turnovers.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do they cancel lacrosse for rain?

Yes, they do cancel lacrosse for rain, but only when there is a high possibility of lightning and the limitation of a natural grass field. You can read the specific rules here.

Can you play lacrosse in the winter?

Yes, you can play lacrosse in the winter. Various high school and collegiate players are performing their skills on the snow.

However, the snow conditions make the basic skills - catching, passing, and shooting challenging even for the best lacrosse players.

What should I wear for cold-weather lacrosse?

You should wear a thin short-sleeved shirt under the pads.

As long-sleeved shirts tend to tangle in arm pads, and sweatshirts are too bulky, short-sleeved shirts won't create any discomfort or extra pressure. However, you should put a sweatshirt over the shoulder pads.

Can you play lacrosse in a thunderstorm?

No, you cannot play lacrosse in a thunderstorm.

If a thunderstorm threat is imminent, the game or practice must be canceled or postponed until the conditions are better. You can read the whole policy here.

What happens if we play in the rain?

Lacrosse can be played in the rain as long as there is no high risk of severe injuries or an imminent threat of lightning or thunderstorm. Otherwise, the game will be canceled immediately.

Can lacrosse balls get wet in the rain?

Yes, lacrosse balls can get wet in the rain, but only occasionally. They are made of rubber, a water-resistant material, so the balls cannot lose their shape or quality at once.

However, when exposed to adverse weather and too much water, their surface grip may wear down and cause the ball to become too slick. Thus, it won't be fit for the play.

Final Words

Lacrosse is an exceptional sport that can still be enjoyed in the rain if it is safe.

Proper protection and vigilance make it possible to play lacrosse in the rain without causing too much harm. Despite this, safety comes first, and the threat of a thunderstorm or severe injuries is always a valid cause for canceling or postponing the match.

At the end of the day, ensuring everyone remains safe should be at the top of every lacrosse player's list, and all decisions should reflect this.

So when packing your gear for your next lacrosse game, don't forget your raincoat!

Freddy Woods

Freddy is the heart and soul of Lacrosse Runner. As a former athlete, Freddy is very passionate about Lacrosse. He keeps up with the sport's changes and innovations and often tests the new equipment released by the leading manufacturers. Read more here