Tuesday, July 12, 2022

Longstreth Signs Sam Swart on Her Return to the Hockey Field

Sam Swart at Longstreth with TK Stick
 Today Longstreth Field Hockey announces the signing of Sam Swart as she trades in her lacrosse stick for a field hockey stick in her final year of eligibility at Syracuse. Over the last five years, the two-time Inside Lacrosse Honorable Mention All-American helped guide the Syracuse women’s lacrosse team to four NCAA Tournaments. But lacrosse isn’t the only sport that Swart has excelled in.

Swart was actually a three-sport athlete during her high school years at Archbishop Carroll, excelling in lacrosse, field hockey and basketball. She ultimately chose to pursue lacrosse in college, but her heart never completely left the hockey field. As the opportunity presented itself to have one more season of eligibility in a different sport, Swart is seizing the chance to make another dream come true.

  Throughout high school, Swart played club hockey for WC Eagles and was part of USA Field Hockey’s pipeline as a member of the U.S. U-19 National Team. She was selected to the AAU Junior Olympic Games twice and consistently received All-Delco, All-Catholic and All-Main Line teams.

Sam Swart playing field hockey

Although her fans have gotten used to seeing her with a lacrosse stick, Swart says she never completely put her field hockey stick down. She has been playing in a summer league of the last few years so her stick skills have stayed fresh. And that stick- it has always been a TK Hockey stick.

  

Sam Swart playing field hockey

Longstreth is proud to be the exclusive supplier of TK Hockey equipment in the US. As the experts in field hockey and #1 retailer, Longstreth is proud to support Sam Swart as a TK Hockey Brand Ambassador as she steps back onto the field hockey field this coming fall.


Additional information:

https://spectrumlocalnews.com/nys/central-ny/news/2022/06/16/sam-swart-pursues-a-new-passion-this-fall#

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/sam-swart-orange-nation-6-8/id1280670715?i=1000565670694

Monday, May 16, 2022

What type of field hockey goalie are you?

 

Goalie Bryn Underwood

Ready to purchase your new OBO Robo field hockey goalkeeping equipment but not sure where to start? Our goalie experts are here to help you!

The OBO Robo line perfectly meets the needs of players at the national and senior level, and those wanting to get there. Within the Robo family, there are a lot of different options that better suit different playing styles. As goalkeepers, we are all amazingly unique, so there isn’t a one-style-fits-all option when it comes to your equipment. It is important to make sure you are finding the gear that best compliments your playing style, not necessarily the style of the others in your GK squad.

There are pros and cons to every piece depending on the type of player you are, so take some time to get familiar with the equipment so you can get the best benefit out of your gear! The OBO Robo range is broken into three different playing styles of foam: Hi-Control, Hi-Rebound, and PLUS. There isn’t one that is better than the other, but there is one that is better for YOU. You can also mix and match between kickers, legguards, right hand, and left hand to really customize your game.

Inside Goalkeeper Bag


For example, take a look inside of my goalie bag

 Generally speaking, the Robo Hi-Control gear is designed for the extremely active goalie. That player who has an endless amount of energy and is up, down and all over the place. Hi-Control is designed to make movement easy. Robo Hi-Rebound is a little bit of a hybrid between Control and PLUS. The Hi-Rebound equipment is for a player is more likely to stay on their feet and play upright, but will occasionally go down to make the save. The Robo PLUS gear is for the extremely upright and patient goalkeeper. If you want to get the benefit of maximum surface area and predictability, then these pads might be for you.

So let’s go down the OBO Robo range from bottom up!

Kickers

Robo Hi-Control: These are the most durable kickers in the Robo range. The rounded toe shape maximizes player acceleration. They absorb the impact of the ball, keeping it close to your feet so you can be in complete control of your game to make the clear.

Robo Hi-Rebound: These kickers give you the highest bounce off the foam. If you are a keeper who likes the one-touch redirect, these kickers are for you!

Robo PLUS: These kickers are a game-changer. They are extremely lightweight, and the anatomical design makes your movements feel completely natural. The square edges give you predictability to be able to make that one-touch safe and know exactly where your rebound is headed. They have the most surface area and are the most protective, but if you go through kickers quickly or play on harsher surfaces they may not be the best option for you. 

Legguards

Goalie Leg Guards


Robo Hi-Control: Maximize your movement! The legguards are built for you to get your groove on. They are narrower than the other legguards in the Robo range, but the left legguard is wider than the right to give you a little more area where it won’t get in your way.

Robo Hi-Rebound: Sitting as the middle man between the Hi-Control and PLUS, these legguards try to offer some of the best of both worlds. The Hi-Rebound foam gives you maximum bounce off of your pads while still providing as much natural movement as possible.

Robo PLUS: The newest from the wonder kids at OBO, the Robo PLUS legguards fit a very upright playing style. Robo PLUS offers predictability to your game and the ability to direct the ball out of danger or onto your teammate’s stick. Not quite as much rebound pop, but all of the peace of mind knowing exactly where the ball is going. If you are considering making the change to the PLUS legguards we strongly suggest trying them on first! Come to our Longstreth retail store or visit us at an event to put them on and experience the difference firsthand. These feel very different, so we definitely recommend trying before you buy!

Robo Legguard Infographic

Left Hand

Robo Hi-Control: This thick left hand protector is shaped to help deflect the ball downwards so you can make the controlled clear with your feet.

Robo Hi-Rebound: Maximum rebound means you can redirect the ball effortlessly, to the side or up and over.

Goalie Left Hand Protector


Right Hand

Robo Hi-Control: The best part about the Hi-Control right hand protector is the complete freedom of your wrist movement. When on the ground, the protector has a flat profile that makes ground clearances easy and reliable.

Robo Hi-Rebound: The largest blocking face, this hand protector gives you maximum pop off of your pads. This will take some adjustment of your stick and wrist as you go to the ground.

Robo PLUS: Meeting in the middle, the PLUS right hand combines the best of the Control and Rebound RHP. More wrist movement than the rebound while still providing maximum front facing surface area.

Goalie Right Hand Protector


Field hockey goalies aren’t always the tallest players on the team, here’s a shout out to those spicy keepers who are on the shorter side or have smaller feet… Robo MINI!

These legguards and kickers are made out of the elite Robo foam but in a size that fits you! Get the elite performance you’ve been craving without sacrificing fit.

Still have questions? Our goalkeeping experts are happy to help! Shoot us an email, give us a call, visit us at the Longstreth retail store, or stop by to see us at your next event. We love talking GK gear and are happy to help find the right equipment for your game! 

OBO Goalie Bags


Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Holiday Gift Guide

 It's that time of year again. 

The holidays are quickly approaching and it's time to shop for the field hockey fan on your list. We've put together a holiday gift guide just for you. Stocking stuffers? We've got 'em! NEW winter clothing? Now in stock!  Gifts for your goalie? Absolutely! Get ready to shop this season with the Longstreth Holiday gift guide - everything you need for your favorite field hockey player.


Layers to Love:

Stay warm on and off the field in the colder months. Layer up this winter with Under Armour cold gear tops and leggings. Add a USA Field Hockey hoodie or sweatpants to complete your Outfit of the Day look. Cold weather gloves are the perfect addition for outdoor play. Don't forget a hat! Longstreth offers a variety of hats and gifts with the official USA Field Hockey logo.  


Field Hockey Favorites:

You can't go wrong with these Longstreth favorites. Field Hockey graphic tees are a popular present for every field hockey fan in the family! We have field hockey books for the book worm on your list and magnets to show their love of field hockey no matter where they are!


Stocking Stuffers:

18" mini field hockey sticks, keychains, stick pens and magnets are the perfect sized stocking stuffers. Need a new field hockey ornament for your tree? Visit our online Holiday Shop to grab one before they're gone! Not sure what to get? When in doubt, a Longstreth gift card is the way to go.





Gifts for goalies:

Hey foamie homies! Show your love of goalkeeping all year long with an OBO legguard keychain (bonus points if it matches your actual legguards!). Don’t forget to add our best-selling “I’m a Keeper” tee to your wish list too! Looking for the latest legguards or kickers? We’ve got our top picks right here!


Monday, November 1, 2021

Traveling With Your Field Hockey Sticks

Traveling with your field hockey stick

You couldn't be more excited for this tournament you're traveling to. Your flight leaves early so you've checked your list eight times before heading to bed. Your field hockey backpack is packed alongside your suitcase, all of your ducks are in a row. You get to the airport and… oh snap, you forgot you'd have to check your field hockey stick!

 We hear the tales every year at every event… make sure you're prepared! A simple stick bag ensures that your field hockey stick travels through the airport safely and gives it a much better chance of arriving at the same destination as you unscathed. Don't just stick your bag tag on your stick and hope for the best. Plastic wrap and duct tape are no replacement for the protection a field hockey travel bag can provide. Some field hockey players like to still bring their smaller backpack for travel to and from the hockey fields but use the stick bag for the plane, so they like to look for a simple stick bag just for the airport. Others prefer to just use the backpack strap style travel bag for the full event and prefer a stick bag with more compartments that can hold everything you need.  

Field Hockey Travel bagField Hockey Travel Bags

So what happens if you get to the event and your stick doesn't arrive? Don't worry, we still have you covered. Stop by the Longstreth Field Hockey booth and we can hook you up with a sample stick to get you on the field right away and are happy to work with you to find something that is most comparable to your missing stick when you have time after the rush to that first game. Our field hockey event sale pricing makes it a little easier to take that new stick home with you - and save your receipt because the airline might reimburse you!


Monday, September 27, 2021

Outdoor vs. Indoor Field Hockey

Field Hockey was introduced to the United States by an English woman named Constance M.K. Applebee. Since then, the sport has developed rather quickly. Starting as a sport for women, it is now played by women and men of all age groups. It also developed into a winter indoor sport. With the move to indoors, the game changed in many ways. When looking at the difference between outdoor and indoor field hockey, you will see major differences in the field surface, measurements, number of players, rules, and even equipment.



Outdoor Field Hockey is played on grass or a synthetic field. Indoor Field Hockey can be played on a gymnasium floor, linoleum, or snap tiles, making it a much faster paced game. Although the game is a faster pace indoors, it is a much smaller court, requiring players to use the basic skills of passing and pulls. The typical outdoor Field Hockey playing area is measured at 100 yards by 60 yards. Compared to the outdoor field, the indoor court is much smaller; measured at 39 to 48 yards by 19 to 24 yards. The sidelines in indoor field hockey are actually replaced with boards. This allows players to use the boards to pass to each other. Out of bounds occurs when the ball goes over the boards or if it rolls out on the end lines.

Because of the large difference in the size of the field, there are less players out on an indoor court at a time. Your typical 10 field players and 1 goalie turns into 5 field players and 1 goalie. This means that the team is limited as to what formation they can play. Some teams choose the formation consisting of 2 forwards, 1 midfield, and 2 defenders. But, all positions are expected to move up and down the court as one unit.

With the exception of one rule, the rules of outdoor field hockey are consistent with indoor. For example, the ball must travel a certain distance before entering the circle on free hits, no hacking, the ball cannot touch your feet, etc. The number one difference between outdoor and indoor is lifting. In outdoor, players can lift the ball over the opponents stick and they can use aerials to create space or an opportunity for a breakaway. On the other hand, there are no lifts allowed in indoor field hockey. The only exception is that players may lift only if it is on goal. Corners also look a bit different compared to outdoor play. On a typical outdoor corner, the defense is only allowed 4 field players and 1 goalie in the cage. Whereas, the offense can have as many players on the circle as they would like. In indoor, both the defensive and the offensive team can have as many players as they would like to, in the cage and on the circle, respectively. The rule stays the same that no one can enter the circle until the ball is inserted and the ball must come out of the circle in order for the corner to count.

Even the equipment is different between outdoor and indoor field hockey. Essentially, the only real difference is the stick. Outdoor sticks are required to have a thicker toe in order to accommodate for the powerful drives and hits. Indoor sticks look a little different. The toe, and the stick in general, is much lighter and thinner. This is because there are no drives allowed indoors. The thinner toe also allows for complete ball control while moving at a faster pace. You will also see players wearing protective gloves. Since there is no lifting, players will keep their hands close to the ground which allows for a better chance of getting hit by the ball or a stick. 


If you are a player looking to keep up with your skills in the off season, consider looking into a local indoor team. It is a great opportunity to stay in shape, keep up with your skills, and make new friends.

Monday, August 23, 2021

Beginning Players - What Gear Do They Need

Beginner Field Hockey Players

First time players can find everything they need for field hockey at Longstreth Sporting Goods. We offer a large selection of sticks and field hockey starter packages perfect for the beginner

New to the game? We can help size you for the right size field hockey stick and shinguards! Make your package complete by adding on a stick bag. 

First time players will learn the basics of the game such as dribbling, passing and shooting. All you need to start playing is a field hockey stick, ball, shinguards and a mouthguard.

Beginner Field Hockey Players


Wednesday, September 2, 2020

New Beginnings: A Life Update & Look Towards the Fall

 Written by Amanda Magadan

With the Fall 2020 season quickly approaching, it feels as if we’ve flown through a time machine. A new normal where public gatherings are limited, face masks are the norm, and personal space standing in line is a common courtesy. Although seven months have passed since the start of the global pandemic, it’s as if we’ve come so far, yet gone nowhere at all. Probably because that’s been the case. Restaurants were closed, sports were cancelled, travel was restricted, mandatory quarantine was implemented, and more. Time, for various reasons, became common for most. It did for me, and this time I used to think, reflect, process, and challenge myself. Time to write a new story.

Amanda Magadan USA Field Hockey Player

Prior to the global pandemic, a lot had unfolded. We didn’t qualify for the 2020 Olympics back in November 2019, had a huge team and staff transition, were in the process of relocating facilities, and faced the tragedy of our beloved assistant coach turned team manager passing away. With so many emotions to unpack and the 2020 Pro League season underway, naturally you did your best to shove your emotions to the side and move on. That is until COVID-19 shut down the world. With lots of time to think, quarantine became a time period of self-reflection. A time to rehash the past, anticipate the future, and heal in the present. I was fortunate to be quarantined at the beach and spent most of my time on the first floor porch looking over the bay thinking about the past and practicing my mindfulness most mornings. The extra time I finally had become an opportunity for me to make my individual growth and healing a priority.

Quarantine wasn’t all “soul searching” so to speak. It was also valuable time spent with family— morning runs, night time bike rides, game nights, and Netflix shows. It was a time I launched a business with my teammates turned best friends Ashley Hoffman and Lauren Moyer called Become Uncommon Co. It was a time I was able to give back to the Lafayette College Field Hockey Team by joining them as a guest speaker. It was a time I sold my house in Lancaster, Pa. It was a time I learned how to cut hair, make new recipes, and enjoy new things. But most of all, it was a time when I closed a chapter and started a new one.

Amanda Magadan USA Field Hockey Player


New beginnings don’t always mean we know what’s to come. In fact, we’re all venturing into a new beginning together. A re-entry into everyday life. As the Fall approaches, we’re still burdened by the uncertain of tomorrow. The unknown might bring individually angry, frustration, sadness, and/or anxiety. But as we approach the Fall and head into a hopeful Fall season, we can practice these 5 tips to help us no matter what gets thrown our way.

1. Give Yourself Grace: Practice kindness with yourself. You’re going to make mistakes. You’re going to get upset, angry, anxious, and/or frustrated. Give yourself kindness and empathy in those moments.

2. Be Smart & Safe: Be smart. Wear your mask and follow protocols the best you can.

3. Be Flexible: As athletes, this one isn’t new to you. You’re always adapting on the field to different circumstances and this is no different. Things will be different than previous seasons— we know that and that’s okay. You’ve been flexible in the past and you’ll do it again. Not only will your flexible attitude be greatly appreciated by those around you, but it will set you up to have a more pleasant experience and tackle any obstacles you may face. It will help you be resilient.

4. Be Present: Take everything day-by-day. I’m a huge proponent of mindfulness and if there is one thing almost everyone can learn from the global pandemic, its take it day-by-day, moment-by-moment. Reliving the past or anticipating the future is wasting away the present. Be in the here and now. You’re at practice with your teammates, enjoy it.

5. Practice Gratitude: In the beginning of the year, at some point, you probably felt like you were too tired to go to practice or you didn’t want to do that one drill or play in that position on the field. Practice gratitude for what you are allowed to do. You’re allowed to practice in small groups? Great, be thankful and enjoy the moment. Don’t be wishing you were playing full field games. Don’t wish you were anywhere else. Remain in the moment and be thankful for it. Practice thankfulness and you’ll be happy and more present.

Amanda Magadan USA Field Hockey Player

 


Thursday, August 6, 2020

Hands Free Ball Pick Up With Kollectaball

 

The Kollectaball K-Strike will collect field hockey balls with no problem at all. It has the unique, inbuilt dispensing unit which will allow you to empty the balls back into a bucket or bag in seconds and also features our patented wire removal system. 

Instead of picking up the balls with your hands and risking sharing germs this season, the Kollectaball K-Strike is your solution for no-contact ball pick up! Collect, disinfect, and release all without touching the field hockey ball.

The Kollectaball K-Strike is a lifelong tool that'll solve the issue of forever bending down to collect field hockey balls. 

Get a Kollectaball today!


Wednesday, June 3, 2020

From HS to college and college to the national team - transitions in the game


Field hockey, no matter the level, is such a skilled game that is always changing and evolving. I think that is what initially attracted me to the sport. I see it as a cross between Ice Hockey and Soccer, two sports that I had grown up watching and playing almost all my life. When I started playing in 7th grade for my mom’s club team “Chix With Stix Field Hockey” I focused less on trying to push myself to be better and more on just being in the moment and having fun with my friends. I didn’t really understand that there was a possibility I could play in college or beyond, I always strictly thought about playing Ice Hockey.

Joining the Duxbury High School varsity field hockey team as a freshman, I remember being completely shocked by the speed and the skill that some of my upperclassmen possessed. We had a couple girls committed to top tier Division I and Division III programs. A couple of the girls also played for my club team, HTC Field Hockey, so as a group, we would do private lessons together with my club coach. I was in awe of these players, watching them use 3D skills to beat a defender and then line up for a reverse chip with such ease. My edgy, but at the time of my freshman season, one dimensional game had been completely shaken up. For me, seeing what it took to play in college was slightly daunting, but a challenge I was more than willing to accept.


USA Field Hockey Team in Action


Throughout my four years in high school, I absorbed all the skills I could possibly take in, watching hours and hours of international game footage. I spent long days with my club coaches, trying to turn my one dimensional game into a three dimensional, dynamic, tactical and aggressive game that would allow me to succeed in college. I began my journey, committing to Boston University and then joining the squad one year later. Despite my hard work and thorough preparation, I quickly realized that no matter what, you will never truly understand the game and be able to adapt to it until you’re stuck in the middle of it.

The pace is faster. The players are bigger and stronger. Everyone possesses the same skills and game sense that you do, but now they can execute these skills perfectly all while running at their top speed. I remember sitting at the field asking myself “how do you set yourself apart?” For me this was a huge lesson that I would have to learn, not only for college but for playing at the next level on the US Women's National Team. Tactically, I had to understand every press that we would use, how to set up in different situations based on what I saw in front of me and so much more. I learned that fitness, strength, nutrition and sleep were just as important as understanding a skill or what was happening on the field. I quickly began to understand that flexibility with what my coaches needed from me was key. My freshman season I was forward, but after that year we needed a center back, so my role changed. I had to learn a whole new skills set to be ready for the following season, and that's what I did. Throughout my college career, I learned that the tangibles were important, but the intangibles, like being coachable and open to new opportunities in front of you, was equally if not more important.

My U.S. and college careers have largely been intertwined, as I joined the U.S. Development Squad during the summer going into my junior season at Boston University. Joining the Development squad and eventually, the Women's National Team showed me just how competitive field hockey can be. Each player is different and brings their own spin and style to the game, but despite this we are essentially the same. We have been the best players on every team we have ever played on, dominating in college and beyond. Nevertheless, the game continues to become faster. Every country we play against on the international stage has a different style of play, which can include a different pressing style, a structure that allows them to play through the midfield or down the sideline. Maybe they constantly use aerials to get the ball down the field, or maybe not. Each country brings something different and new to the table, and we always need to be ready for it. The U.S. plays a fast, forward game that is very aggressive with major emphasis on having a front foot mentality. We will fight tooth and nail to win the ball and get it in the cage. It’s a style that is unique to the U.S. and truly gives us an edge.

It is amazing to see the evolution of the game over time. In the beginning, you see it as very one dimensional. I focused on having fun with my friends and learning something new. As I understood more about the game and my love grew, my game also grew becoming more three dimensional with added variables that pushed me to become the player I am today. I am still growing and changing with the times because even today the game has not stopped growing. To continue to compete at such a high level, you must change and evolve with it, being open to new tactical or technical skills that might come along. As I said before, the task might be daunting but believe me, looking back it will be one of the greatest journeys of your life. For me, I will always be proud of the moment I picked up a stick and said “bring it on”.
AllyHammel #21  USA Field Hockey Defender


USA Field Hockey Defender

Monday, May 4, 2020

Selecting a New Stick for High School Field Hockey

Selecting a new field hockey stick is a decision driven by personal preferences. It’s much more than graphics and position, it really comes down to your personal playing style. Think about what skills you perform on a regular basis- do you need more power? High carbon content contributes to high power in hits, but can also make receiving more challenging. If control is more your focus, you will want something with a little less carbon. Players need to find the right balance of power and feel to best suit their game. If you are typically a fall-season field hockey player, we usually suggest an advanced stick which range from about 30-60% carbon. If you also play club field hockey year round, you may want to consider an elite stick which are usually around 70-100% carbon.



Similarly, you will also need to find the best shape that suits your playing style. All sticks have a bow to them, and the location of the highest point of that bow along the stick can have different advantages and disadvantages in the game. When first learning the game, most players will start with a regular bow, which has the highest point placed in the midsection or center of the shaft equally assisting every skill in the game. The most common shape in the modern game of field hockey is the late bow, which has the highest point closer to the toe of the stick. This shape offers extra assistance with lifting the ball, aerials, and dynamic ball movement, without sacrificing your hitting technique. An extreme late bow has the highest point as close to the toe as possible, maximizing 3D skills and dynamic ball control. This extreme shape may take some time getting used to when driving.



Ready to pick out your next stick? Look at your current stick first. We usually suggest going up in carbon content about 30-50%. This will give you a nice increase in power without losing too much control all at once. So for example, if you are looking for a step up from your middle school stick and it was 10% carbon, you’d want to look for a stick that was around 40-60% carbon. If you are ready to move up from your first high school stick and it was 30% carbon, you will want to look at something that is 60-80% carbon. Once you decide what carbon range you are looking for, you can start looking at shape. If you are an all-around player who likes to do a lot of hits/slaps, you will probably want a late bow shape. If you are the type of player that likes to do a lot of aerials, 3D skills, and dynamic ball movement, you may want to get an extreme late bow shape.

Still have some questions? We know all of the details can be pretty confusing. You can always reach out to one of our Longstreth Experts for help with selecting the perfect stick for you! We’re always here and happy to help- this is what we do!

#weAREfieldhockey #ChooseTheBest