Frequently Asked Questions
I’ve never played lacrosse. Is it hard to learn?
What age groups can play?
Is boy’s lacrosse different from girl’s lacrosse?
I don’t know anything about lacrosse. How can I learn?
What equipment will my child need?
Who founded Ballistic Sports Group?
Is lacrosse expensive?
Will you have classes to teach kids how to play?
I’d like to volunteer as a coach, but I don’t have a lot of experience. Can I still do that?
My company would like to sponsor a team. How do I do that?
I don’t want to coach, but I would like to help out. What else can I do?
Are there discounts for multiple kids and one family?
The Spring recreational program is brand-new. What do you expect our chances of winning will be?
What kind of emphasis does Ballistic Sports Group put on winning, losing, scoring goals, etc.?
We can teach you the basics of lacrosse – how to catch, how to throw — in less than five minutes. After that, there are some specific techniques to learn called “cradling” that enable you to run up and down the field with the ball. Once those skills are learned, the typical player can enjoy lacrosse at its most basic level fairly quickly. After that, there is a lot more to learn as you go along. We will teach every player the basics of team play and Will ensure that everyone on the field knows what he or she is doing.
Ballistic lacrosse will try to field teams in the following age groups for the Spring rec teams: boys 9U, 11U, 13U, and 15U and girls middle school and elementary school. Depending on numbers, we may not be able to put all of those teams together. Fall and Summer travel teams are boys high school and girls high school. If we are able to find coaches, we would like to field boys 15U and girls middle school.
Both sports involve a stick, a goal, and a field. The similarities pretty much stop there! Girl’s lacrosse is a very different sport from the boy’s version of the game. Boys wear lots of protective equipment because it is a full contact sport, at least in the older age groups. The girl’s game is more about speed and fitness, and technique is extremely important. The strategies and tactics for each game are very different — but each is equally exciting to watch once you understand the game.
Many parents understand the frustration of going to their kid’s soccer game and not understanding what an offside called is. Since we’ve been there ourselves, we want to make sure that everyone has a better understanding of our sport. Before each season, ballistic lacrosse will offer a short class for parents so they can understand the sport and enjoy the game they are seeing. You may not become an expert, but you will understand what’s going on on the field far better than if you just went and watched. Also, we suggest the following online resources:
You will need to provide your player with the following equipment:
- Boys will need a stick, helmet, gloves, shoulder and elbow pads, lacrosse or soccer cleats, mouth guard and cup.
- Girls will need a stick, goggles, lacrosse or soccer cleats, mouth guard, and gloves (optional).
- Goalies for both boys and girls have a special stick, helmet with throat protector, special gloves, thicker shoulder and chest pads, shin guards and padded shorts.
Ballistic Sports Group grew out of Ballistic Lacrosse, a travel team program based in Lee County. The original organization was a partnership that evolved into today’s not for profit group. Riverdale High School Boy’s Lacrosse Head Coach, Richard Williamson, and former RHS Girl’s Lacrosse Head Coach and FGCU Women’s HC, Michelle Williamson, head the organization. Both are longtime residents of Lee county, and are dedicated to expanding athletic and social opportunities for kids in the area.
Lacrosse is less expensive than hockey but more expensive than soccer. Each boy player needs to buy a stick, helmet, shoulder pads, elbow pads, cleats and mouth guard. Girls need a stick, goggles, cleats, and mouth guard. All of these can be found in beginner’s kits from online stores such as sportstop.com or lacrosse.com, or from local sports stores. The latter has fewer choices and higher prices. Play-It-Again Sports is another good option for families on a budget. Used equipment in good shape can always be found at reasonable prices. Beginner’s kits can run anywhere from $100-$300 for boys and $40-$100 for girls.
During the fall and early winter of each year, Ballistic will hold a series of Learn2Play classes. We will be post the dates and times on our website, or you can call 239–770–2631 and speak with Richard Williamson about setting up a class.
Of course! For the younger kids, it’s all about teaching them the basics. We can teach you that, and get you started. Experienced coaches will always be on hand to help with your practices and answer any questions you might have. As Ballistic’s recreational program grows, so can your experience and participation. Call 239–770–2631 and speak with Richard Williamson about it.
Call Michelle Williamson at 239-357-5462, and to discuss sponsorship opportunities. Since Ballistic Sports Group, Inc., is a registered 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, any assistance you provide is tax deductible.
Coaching is only one of the many ways people can volunteer for Ballistic. We need team managers, statistics takers, people to help set up and breakdown fields before and after practices and games, people to organize drinks and snacks after games, and people who can help with conditioning or other kinds of training. If you have a special skill or think of an area that might be helpful to us, just let us know. I’m sure there’s someway you can help! Call Michelle Williamson at 239-357-5462.
The costs to run the program for the season does not allow for a lot of wiggle room and those costs are the same for each child. At present, without sponsors, we can’t offer discounts for multiple entries. In future, we will try to do so.
With anything that’s new, there is going to be a learning curve. Our players will be brand-new, without any experience whatsoever. Expecting them to win is unrealistic and most likely harmful to their enjoyment of the game. What we expect to get out of this first season is to have a group of kids who know how to play a new sport and have a great time doing it! Parents shouldn’t have any illusions about performance or expectations of tournament victories. The program is new, the kids are new, and some of the coaches will be new. We expect that the program will produce outstanding lacrosse players overtime. The first year will be a little bit bumpy. Give the kids time to learn and improve their game at their own pace and everyone will benefit.
At Ballistic Sports Group, we believe that playing sports is a way to learn a lot about the world, other people, and working in groups. Lacrosse is a sport – one of the oldest in the world — and sports are about winning and losing. For every game there will be one winner and one loser. It’s not helpful to the development of our children to teach them that sports is only about participation and that everyone who participates is equally a winner. As in the rest of life, there are some people who perform well and are rewarded for it and others who do not perform as well and do not reap the benefits of a good job well done. We feel that sports organizations that, for example, don’t keep score during games and give everyone who plays a participation metal equal in size to those who took first place are unrealistic and harming our children. So, we want to have a competitive program. In the younger ages, lacrosse is about learning the game and doing your best on the field. U9 and U11 games are not great athletic contest. They are more about the kids learning to play, figuring out the sport, and trying to discover their own place within it. Sure, there are winners and losers, but honestly every kid that gets out there and plays is a winner compared to those who stay at home and play on the Xbox. In the U13 age group, when kids are better able to execute the sport at a high-level, competition becomes stiffer and the kids are more intent upon winning in part because they are capable of understanding HOW to win.