There is a reason some of the best hockey skaters started playing the game when they were just barely out of diapers. That is because hockey has so many different skills you have to master in order to become good at it. Even the best players though will not be able to perform at their peak ability if they are not supported by the right equipment and part of that is selecting the right hockey stick to compliment your game. That is why we have taken the time to come up with this hockey stick buying guide and supplement it with some reviews on the best hockey sticks available.Why is it important to have a good hockey stick that is the right size for you? The answer to that is because so many parts of the game involve using your hockey stick. Shooting, passing, defending and blocking all involve your ability to use your hockey. That is why it is so important not to just buy any old hockey stick but to buy one that fits you right so it will help elevate your play.Top Hockey Stick Comparison ChartPictureNamePriceWhere to Buy?1. Bauer Nexus 1N Senior Grip Hockey Stick $$Check Price on Amazon2. Bauer LFT P92 35-Flex Prodigy Youth 46″ Composite Stick $$Check Price on Amazon3. Easton Stealth Cx 100 Hockey Stick $$$$Check Price on Amazon4. Fischer Hockey FX8 Grip Composite Stick $$$Check Price on Amazon5. Bauer Supreme 160 Griptac Composite Intermediate Hockey Stick $$Check Price on Amazon6. Fischer Hockey Senior SX5 Grip Composite Stick, 110 Flex, 61-Inch, White with Red, Right, P5 $$$Check Price on Amazon7. Warrior Swagger Goalie Stick 26 $$$Check Price on Amazon8. Mylec Senior Total Hockey Stick $$Check Price on Amazon9. Sher-Wood T120 Grip Hockey Stick [SENIOR] $$Check Price on Amazon10. Sher-Wood 5000 Youth Wood Hockey Stick $$Check Price on AmazonHockey Stick Buying GuideHockey sticks may just look like a chunk of wood or composite material but there is actually a lot that goes into the making of them. It is a lot like a baseball bat in comparison; they don’t look like much but the details in there construction can make a big difference in how well you play your sport.With that being said, there are definitely some key components to hockey sticks that you will need to take a closer look at before you decide which stick you will buy. All of the items on the following list will come together when selected properly to make the perfect hockey stick to help you play the game at a high level.Here are the key characteristics of hockey sticks to take a look at before making a final purchase:PricePrice is always a big factor when shopping for a product and it is not something you want to take lightly. These days a hockey stick can cost you hundreds of dollars so it would certainly not be wise to get stuck with one that does not work right for you. You also don’t want to make the mistake of thinking that the most expensive hockey stick is the best one for you or your youth hockey player because that is not always the case. Also, just like with any other type of product, there are some great deals out in the marketplace on hockey sticks; you can find some sticks that have all the features of the best ones made a much lower price.Price is also a factor because you most likely will be working on a budget too for you or your youth player’s hockey equipment. So figure out how much you are willing to spend on a jockey stick and stay in that budget range when shopping so you will be happy with your purchase. Extending yourself financially often makes shopping for hockey sticks more stressful than it has to be because good hockey sticks come in a wide variety of price ranges.Price can also be used as a determining factor to help you decide between two different hockey sticks that you like. If you are comparing apples with apples there is no good reason not to purchase the lower priced hockey stick.MaterialThere are several different materials that hockey sticks are made out of these days. Each has its advantages and disadvantages. Here are the three main types of hockey stick materials.WoodThis is what all hockey sticks were once made of and many players today still use wooden hockey sticks. One thing that keeps them popular is their affordable price tag compared to metal and composite hockey sticks; they are significantly cheaper to say the least. The big drawback with them is that they break much more easily than any other type of hockey sticks.MetalThis was the second big phase of hockey stick production that at one time captured a large percentage of the hockey stick market. The market for these types of hockey sticks has steadily declined with the introduction of composite-based hockey sticks into the marketplace. These sticks still used a wooden blade inserted into the base of them. They are virtually unbreakable but they are a very stiff stick and it can be difficult to change the wooden blade insert on them.CompositeThis is the major player in the hockey stick marketplace these days. These sticks are made from strong but flexible carbon fibers. They are virtually indestructible which means most youth players will never have to buy more than one in a season; which is a good thing because they are by far the most expensive type of hockey stick to purchase.LengthThe length of you or your youth player’s hockey stick is of critical importance too. A hockey stick that is too short or too long will make it very difficult to do such things as pass, shoot and stick handle well. The right length stick makes all of these important hockey traits smoother and easier to do.How do you know what is the right length hockey stick for you? Well, you can consult the fancy charts that most all of the hockey stick manufacturers put out these days or you can do it the old-fashioned yet very effective way. That is done by putting on your hockey skates and standing up with your back straight. The proper length hockey stick for you should come to just below your chin when it is straight up and down with the tip of the blade touching the ice. This is a reliable and time-tested way to find the right size hockey stick for yourself.Remember, you can always cut down a hockey stick that is too long but you can’t add on to one. So err on the side of caution and get one that may be too long as opposed to buying one that is definitely too short.LieThis is one of the most important but often most overlooked aspects in a hockey stick. It would be a big mistake to not consider it when purchasing a hockey stick for yourself or your youth player. Ignoring it means you might end up playing with a hockey stick that actually takes away from your ability to play the game at a high level.What is the lie in a hockey stick? In layman’s terms, it’s the amount of the bottom of a hockey stick blade that comes into contact with the ice at one time. Hockey sticks come in different lies because a person’s arm length, leg length, torso height and skate height all affect the angle that a hockey stick blade contacts the ice.Lie is expressed as a number value and printed on each individual hockey stick. To find out what lie hockey stick you would use you need to take your skates to your local hockey supply shop with the skate guards on them. When you get to the hockey stick section put on you or your child’s skates. Try different lie sticks until you find a lie number that puts the highest percentage of your hockey sticks blade bottom into contact with the ground when you are in a slightly bent over hockey position.Once you determine you or your child’s proper lie number make sure you remember it because it’s very important.CurveYou will find very few hockey players that do not have a curve on their stick these days. A curve is good to help you cradle the puck a little as you stick handle and to help lift the angle of your shot a little quicker. There are all different types of curves on hockey sticks these days so you may have to try several sticks to find the type of curve that suits you best. The cheapest way to do this is to borrow some of your friend’s hockey sticks with different curves to use during practice.There is no set rule on how much curve you should or should not have on the hockey stick you use. It basically is one of those things that totally comes down to personal preference and how well you are playing the game with the current curvature of the stick you use. Don’t be afraid to experiment once in a while to try and improve your game either.Keep in mind that if you are a player that likes to use a backhand shot a lot of the time, you really have to pay attention to the amount of curve you have on your stick. The general rule is that the more curve you have on your hockey stick the harder a backhand shot will be to get off.FlexFlex is another very important hockey stick characteristic. It is the amount of bend you get in your hockey stick when you shoot the puck. Telling someone what type of flex they should use in their hockey stick is the same as telling someone what type of music they should listen to; it is totally a personal preference and up to you.Big strong hockey players generally do not need any flex in their hockey stick to get power behind their shot. Smaller and less strong hockey players often prefer the extra speed on their shot that the whip action of a more flexible hockey stick gives them. It is generally a good idea for youth players to use a more flexible stick to start with. Once again you should try a variety of different stick flexibilities to see which one suits you best.DesignLet’s face it; most of us take great pride in looking good as we play a sport. Truth be told there is nothing wrong with that whatsoever. Sometimes if you feel you look good when playing a sport it will even give you a little extra jump in your step as you play. That is why you should not be afraid to purchase a hockey stick that has some style to it.These days’ manufacturers know that sometimes the cool looks of a hockey stick can actually increase sales of it too. So many manufacturers put some extra effort into making their hockey sticks stylish and appealing. That means that anyone should be able to find a stick that not only helps them play the game of hockey better but also makes them look good as they are doing it, but don’t make this the main priority when shopping for you or your youth player’s hockey stick. Best Hockey Stick ReviewsHere are some of the better hockey sticks that you will find in the sports marketplace these days: Bauer Nexus 1N Senior Grip Hockey StickPros:Great price point for a composite stickLight and flexibleEasy to grip with your hockey gloves onCons:Generic looking hockey stickToo flexible for some shooters tastePossible durability issues with a 2 piece stickThis is a really nice composite hockey stick that Bauer has designed here. They are a big name in hockey products and sticks made as well as these are part of the reason why. It is an excellent stick for any teen or adult hockey player to use.For those players that like a flexible stick this is a great choice for them. The composite material it is made of also makes this a very lightweight and easy to handle stick. The special enhanced grip design helps to make things such as shooting and stick handling that much easier. We felt this stick definitely gives whoever is using a lot of control and precise movement when they are trying to do things with a hockey puck.The blades for this style hockey stick come in several different curves and there is a very noticeable sweet spot when shooting slap shots with it. It is a stick that anyone will feel very comfortable with when using it. Bauer Prodigy Youth 46″ Hockey StickPros:Great price point for a composite stickLight and flexible youth hockey stickBuilt in ‘Butt-end’ protector and gripCons:Basic design patternToo flexible for some shooters tastePossible durability with any 2 piece stickThis is another great hockey stick produced by Bauer. This is one is designed especially for the beginning player and it offers them a lot of advantages to help acclimate them to the game of hockey. You can never go wrong purchasing this model stick for your beginning youth hockey player.It is a very lightweight composite model hockey stick. It even has a grip design built right into the surface of the stick itself. This will help any beginner player not drop their stick or lose control of it on a regular basis. It even has a custom ‘Butt-end’ built into the stick to keep your youth players top hand from constantly slipping off it.The blade on this stick is well-designed too. It has just enough flex to boost your beginner players shot a little and help them catch passes from other teammates easier. Easton Stealth Cx 100 Unisex Hockey StickPros:Reinforced stiff bladeLight and flexible senior hockey stickOne piece composite constructionCons:High price pointToo flexible for some shooters tasteBasic looking designThis is a very exceptional; hockey stick that Easton has designed here to say the least. The only reason that it is not higher on our list is that of its high price point. With that being said, after testing it we feel this stick is worth every penny that you pay for it … if it’s within the budget! It is a great stick that will enhance any adult or teen players overall game.The best thing about this stick is its durable one-piece design. It is strong yet flexible to help you shoot and pass the puck well. With its reinforced design it is also not overly flexible like a lot of composite hockey sticks tend to be. The shaft also tapers nicely to shed weight and improve stick control.This stick’s blade is also exceptionally well-designed. It even has reinforcement built into the toe of the blade so you will still get power behind any shots that are not perfectly centered on the blade. Fischer Hockey FX8 Grip Composite Stick Pros:Pro pattern bladeLight and flexible senior hockey stickAircraft grade composite constructionCons:High price pointToo flexible for some shooters tasteShaft does not taperFischer is not one of the biggest names among hockey stick manufacturers but this hybrid composite stick is definitely no slouch. It is a really good looking hockey stick with some very advanced design features. It should enhance the game of any teen or senior league hockey player.This stick has a unique shaft technology built into it. There is a thin layer of foil wrapped around the stick that is designed to minimize vibration from such things as hitting the ice when you shoot or when opponents slash your stick. The fiberglass added to the shaft should make this one very durable hockey stick.The blade on this hockey stick also has a nice feel to it when we shot pucks with it. It feels fairly stiff no matter where we had the puck on the blade. That means you don’t always have to have the puck on the sweet spot of the stick to get a hard shot off. Bauer Supreme 160 Griptac Composite Intermediate Hockey StickPros:Excellent price pointLight and flexible junior hockey stickdurable composite constructionCons:Possible durability with any 2 piece stickToo flexible for some shooters tasteGrip on the shaft is almost too goodBauer makes our list again with a fine hockey stick that any junior player would love to have. It is a reasonably priced composite stick that has several nice features built into it. It is also one of the more stylish looking hockey sticks that we took a look at when compiling this review list.The stick itself is an ideal weight for any junior or intermediate player to be able to handle it easy during a game. This stick is made using some of the lightest composite material of any of those we tested. It is a big bonus for a player to be able to have a lot of control over their stick when first learning the game of hockey or moving up in rank with age and experience.The blade on this hockey stick is exceptionally well designed. You get a very good feeling for the puck when you use this stick. It is though it has a little softer composite material added into the blade material. Fischer Hockey Senior SX5 Grip Composite Stick Pros:Pro pattern bladeLight and flexible senior hockey stickAircraft grade composite constructionCons:High price pointToo flexible for some shooters tasteGeneric designHere is another really high-quality hockey stick made by Fischer. Once again they have taken hockey stick design to an all new level. There is an incredible amount of advanced features built right into this hockey stick. This stick will enhance the game of any teen or adult player that uses it.This hockey stick is built using aircraft grade carbon fiber material. It makes this an incredibly lightweight hockey stick. The shaft has a medium flex to it and a surface that holds your glove in place as you are playing the game. Like most Fischer sticks it also has the anti-vibration technology built into its shaft.Even the blade on this hockey stick is loaded with special design features. The power you get when shooting a hockey puck seems to be more powerful than normal when using this stick. It also has just the right amount of flexibility built into it. Warrior Swagger Goalie Stick 26 Pros:Available in 3 stylish patternsLightweight goalie stickAircraft grade composite constructionCons:High price pointToo stiff for some goalies to useSlightly slippery shaftThere is nothing that says a goalie cannot have an advanced style hockey stick to use when playing the game. This good-looking goalie stick from warrior fits that bill nicely. They have made a strong but lightweight goalie stick that comes in one of three different color styles.This is one tough goalie stick too. That is exactly what you need when you are standing between the pipes defending your net. With its advanced carbon fiber construction, this stick can take a beating and still be good to go for your next game. That is the type of confidence you need when you invest a little more money in a high-end composite goalie stick.Since this stick is so lightweight and durable there are a lot of things that a goalie can do with it well. These include coming out of the net to play the puck and when poke checking one of the opposing team’s players. Mylec Senior Total Hockey Stick Pros:Excellent price pointVery versatile hockey stickWood/composite constructionCons:Possible durability issues with any 2 piece stickExcessive blade curvatureBetter on floors than when used on iceThis is by far one of the most versatile hockey stick products on our review list. Mylec is one of the biggest names in the street and roller hockey business and this is one of their stick models that have crossed over so it can be used on ice too. That makes this a great stick that can be used on the street and as a low-cost practice stick for hockey.The shaft design on this stick is made of all wood. There is not a lot of flex with it because of the fact it is made using wood in its construction. There is a layer of fiberglass reinforcement wrapped around the wood to improve this hockey sticks durability too.The blade construction is definitely the highlight feature of this stick. It is made using a heavy duty ABS plastic that gives this blade superior strength over hockey sticks that use all wood in their construction. Sher-Wood T120 Grip Composite Stick [SENIOR]Pros:Excellent price pointFiberglass reinforced shaftAll wood constructionCons:Big durability concernsA little to the heavy sideNot enough flex for someMost higher-end sticks would be able to claim this to some extent, but truly, the T120 is all about strength and power. Its flexing profile offers more give in the middle of the shaft allowing for more energy and more velocity to be transferred into your shots. It is incredibly lightweight and perfectly balanced. The T120 weighs only 395 grams and is one of the lightest and most responsive sticks on the market. This stick features Sher-Wood’s EKORE Technology which is a highly sophisticated manufacturing process where the stick is entirely handcrafted. Also featuring their new VRF.2 Technology foam blade which prevents premature disintegration, this results in increased durability, more powerful shots and a greater, more tangible feel of the puck.The Stick weighs 395g and is 60″ long. Sher-Wood 5000 Youth Wood Hockey Stick Pros:Excellent price point (the price of 2 Big Macs!!!!)Fiberglass reinforced shaftAll wood constructionCons:Big durability concernsA little to the heavy side for some youth playersNot enough flex for someThis is Sherwood’s fine youth version of the hockey stick that was just reviewed in number nine. It is designed as an affordable entry-level option into the game of hockey for younger and smaller players. Why spend a small fortune on a hockey stick before you know for sure if your youth player will take to the game of hockey.Wooden sticks tend to be heavier than composite sticks but they do have their advantages too. For one this stick has just the right amount of give to it in its fiberglass reinforced shaft. The fiberglass reinforcement also enhances the grip your youth player will get when using this model.The blade design is also excellent for any player that is just beginning in the sport of hockey. It is reinforced to help a younger player get some power behind their shot and it does not have much of a curve so a youth player can easily handle a puck when using either side of the blade.Conclusion & Recommendations Sportconsumer’s Pick for Quality, Value and Customer SatisfactionWe looked at a lot of hockey sticks in coming up with this review list of the best ones. They are all very high-quality sticks but a few of them stood out with us when we were doing our testing. As far as youth hockey sticks go we really like the design of the JR Supreme S 160 Griptac Ice; we just felt the way this stick was built it gives any youth hockey player the edge they need. As far as senior sticks go there was none that could touch the quality of the Easton Stealth CX; even at its high price point we could not see why any teen or adult hockey player would choose another model stick aside from issues of budget or availability.The truth is you can never go wrong with purchasing any hockey stick on our review list. They all possess several fantastic qualities that make them the best hockey sticks in the marketplace. If you don’t like any of the sticks on our list then make sure you consider the information we put in our hockey stick buying guide. There is some useful data in there that will help you find a hockey stick that you or your youth player will love using when playing the game of hockey.The post 10 Best Hockey Sticks 2018: Adult & Youth appeared first on Sport Consumer.