The sport of lacrosse was established by North American Indians even before Europeans explored America. Played by tribes all over the United States and Canada, the game was played for religious purposes, to train young men for war, and to resolve disputes between rival tribes. Though some settlers attempted to play with the Native Americans, the lack of rules and overwhelming skill of the Indians deterred the playability of the game. Lacrosse has evolved since then, the sticks, equipment, and rules becoming more modernized.
The name lacrosse is French, derived from a bishop's staff-like crosier, which is "La Crosse" in French. French explorers gave lacrosse its name when observing it being played by various tribes. Lacrosse incorporates a blend of the games of hockey, basketball, soccer, and football. The Native American form of lacrosse is significantly different from the game played today, mainly because of a lack of rules.
Teams were comprised of hundreds, and sometimes thousands of men and boys, and the field would be a half mile long. Also, the game was much more physical; players would literally wrestle for control of the ball.
The object of the game of lacrosse is to throw the ball into the opponents net, giving the scoring team a point; the team with the most points at the end of the game wins. The universal rule of lacrosse has always been that no one may touch the ball with his hands. The ball is controlled by holding it in the net of the lacrosse stick.
Older versions of sticks vary based on the region where the game was played. Some tribes played with two short, two-foot long sticks, one per hand, which had a net strung within an open circle at the end of each stick. The net used...