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Hockey blog  Blade Guide for Hockey Sticks: How to Choose the Right Angle

Blade Guide for Hockey Sticks: How to Choose the Right Angle

If you are a right-handed shooter, you need a stick with a "right" grip, while "left" is designed for left-handed shooters. But there is more that distinguishes the blades. Here we explain the blade's properties in more detail.

How the Blade Properties Differ

Our hockey sticks are available for both left-handed and right-handed shooters, but if you look closely at the blade angle (for example, the blade guide on the product pages), you will notice that it differs between different models and brands. Experienced players often know which blade they want, while new players may need to try out different ones to find the right one. The geometry and technology of the blade, as well as how it looks and works, are usually described in the product descriptions. Just like the shaft, the blade also often has a certain flex and kickpoint to optimize power and feel in shots and puck handling. To explain the different blade angles in more detail, we can divide them into three key aspects: how much the blade is curved, where it bends, and how "open" the blade is.

1. How much does the blade bend?

Simply put, the more the blade bends, the easier it becomes to control the puck when you have it in the blade on the forehand side. This is because the blade envelops the puck and the risk of the puck slipping out of the blade becomes less. The straighter the blade, the better puck handling skills are required to control the puck. On the other hand, it becomes progressively harder to control the puck on the backhand side as the blade bends more, as the effect here becomes opposite and the puck easily slips away from the blade.

2. Where does the blade bend?

The blade can be divided into three sections: the heel, the center, and the toe, and depending on which section it bends the most, it gets unique properties. Blades with a "heel curve", are particularly popular among defense players and can generate harder shots among other things. The "mid curve", or center curve, is more all-around and suitable for players who want a neutral stick to shoot both wrist shots and slap shots. The "toe curve," can be an advantage for faster shots and better puck control as it becomes easier to quickly pull the puck in towards the body without it slipping out of the blade. This is due to the pocket that is formed at the tip of the blade.

3. How open is the blade?

The blade's face, is the forehand side of the blade where you usually both shoot and pass from. With an "open face", it is easier to get the puck off the ice, which is often an advantage if you are shooting in tight situations or close to the goal. This is because the blade is more angled and "digging" the puck up on the blade, which lifts it off the ice. On the other hand, if you are shooting long, hard shots from the blue line, it may be an advantage to have a blade that is more closed, as this gives you a better opportunity to complete the entire shot and generate more power without the puck being directed too high.

"Left" or "Right"?

The most basic difference regarding the angle of different hockey sticks is whether the blade is bent for left- or right-handed shooters, "left" or "right". The vast majority of hockey players are left-handed, meaning the blade's toe points to the right when you hold the stick in front of you with the blade's heel resting on the ice. This also means that the right hand grips the stick handle highest up, while the left hand holds the shaft further down towards the blade. The opposite applies accordingly for right-handed shooters. If you have never held a stick, it is not clear what angle you should have. But as a rule of thumb, right-handed people are often left-handed shooters, while left-handed people are often right-handed shooters.

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