How to hold a hockey stick and decide what hockey stick to use – left or right handed ?

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How decide what hockey stick to use – left or right handed ?

So the first thing we need to establish is what does right and left handed actually mean ?. If you are a right handed hockey player, your left hand will be at the TOP of your hockey stick. If you are a left handed hockey player, your right hand will be at the top of your stick

Next we need to establish which of the two options will suit you best (lefty or righty). This is where the options can sometimes get a little overwhelming, there is a lot out there that can confuse this decision. Some players and coaches will say that your dominant hand should be placed at the top of the stick, this will greatly help with control over the stick (thus increasing puck control).

On the other hand you have the choice of placing your dominant hand lower down the sticks shaft and your weaker hand at the top. All of the power from your shots comes from the hand lower down the shaft of the stick so it may seem logical to place your dominant hand at the bottom. The stick is not supposed to be used as a fulcrum, shooting and passing is more of a pushing motion so naturally you’d want to be using your stronger arm to hit the puck. You could also say its pointless being able to shoot a hard puck if you can control it. As you may notice, most players play left handed and most people are right handed. This can be explained by the fact the top hand is suppose to control the stick, only exception is said to be for a wrist shot.

The main point I’m trying to make is that at the end of the day its personal preference. No one can tell you what feels right or what is more comfortable for you, placing your choice around what hand your throw a ball or what hand you write with is not always the best option, get the stick in your hand and have a go, stickhandling and shooting with both sides and see what feels more comfortable and natural. You’ll very often find right handed people playing hockey with a left handed stick, they may be using the rule of dominant hand at the top or simply because using a left handed stick feels more comfortable for them.

A general rule of thumb is

  • dominant hand on top = better control with stick and puck
  • dominant hand on the bottom = more powerful shots

Its all down to personal personal preference.

Distance from your top hand to the bottom hand is normally your forearm length.

ps: dont mind my UGG slippers 😛

How I personally hold my stick (with my top hand)


When im stickhandling around tight objects or further away from my body (and doing tricks), I like to move my hand slightly more towards to end of my stick.


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