Flex: The Game-Changing Technology You Never Knew You Needed
What Is It?
If you’ve never heard of flex before, don’t worry: you’re not alone. In the realm of lacrosse shafts flex is rarely mentioned, instead traditionally reserved for hockey sticks or golf clubs. But, the rise of carbon fiber composite shafts means that flex is finding its way into the lacrosse world as well. Before you decide if you want it (which we think you will), you should know what it is. Luckily, flex itself is pretty simple. It refers to the degree of bendiness of the shaft – how flexible or stiff it is when force is applied to it.
Why You Want It:
Now that you’re aware of what flex is, you should know what it does for you. Essentially, different levels of flex maximize your ability to do whatever you do best on the field: they take your type of play (whether power, speed, or a dynamic combination of the two) on either end of the field and amplify your performance.
For an offensive power player, a stiff flex helps transfer energy through the entire stick when passing or shooting, perfect for a step-down shooter. For the dynamic offensive player, a mid flex gives an advantage both when shooting on the run and when taking step-down shots. For the speed offensive player, a soft flex allows for a quick release in any situation (whether passing, shooting or dodging) that’s great for those who like tight finishes.
On the other end of the field for a defensive power player, a stiff flex is designed to help for those who throw precision checks and look to get the ball up field as quickly as possible. For a dynamic defensive player, a mid flex (such as the Epoch iQ5 C60 xl) is engineered for checks and driving players away from the net. For the speed defensive player (like an LSM or offensive minded defender) a soft flex is strong enough to defend the goal but soft enough to give more power when looking for an assist or shooting.
Flex is also valuable in the women’s game, providing multiple performance benefits over an alloy shaft with zero flex. The right flex gives advantages to any player when dodging, passing, shooting, or playing defense.
Where To Find It:
With an understanding of what flex is and what it does for you, it’s now time to look for the right shaft and flex option. Conventional shafts may boast flex, but they often use fiberglass (a cheaper, less durable material) to achieve it. In contrast, Epoch Lacrosse utilizes their carbon fiber layup to create and manipulate flex. Their engineers have pioneered an innovative Advanced Carbon Layering technology that allows them to carefully control the level of flex in each shaft. By layering low Fiber Areal Weight unidirectional carbon pre-preg (which is just carbon mixed with epoxy resin, making it more impact resistant) in a specific manner, Epoch engineers were able to develop a spectrum of game-changing iQ flexes that cater directly to the types of play that we discussed earlier. An iQ range of 1 to 10 (stiff to soft) gives you the ability to handpick the level of precision flex that works best for you.
All in all, the highly engineered addition of flex to Epoch’s shafts (their specialty) makes them impossible to pass up. Grab a Dragonfly with whatever iQ flex option fits your style of play and see for yourself.