Are you a young hockey player looking for your next stick or an adult looking for the best stick for your kid?
It’s important for kids to have the right stick for their age, it needs to be both the right length and the right flex. If they’re using a short adult stick, they won’t have the weight or strength to make it flex to take powerful shots on goal. (more on this below the reviews).
After many hours of research, I’ve narrowed down a list of the absolute best hockey sticks for young players – from 3-14 years of age. If you’re wondering if are the age categories for hockey sticks and the corresponding length.
|Age Group||Height||Stick Length|
|Youth (3-5)||3’0″ – 3’10”||38″ – 44″|
|Youth (6-8)||3’10” – 4’8″||45″ – 49″|
|Junior (7-13)||4’4″ – 5’1″||50″ – 54″|
|Intermediate (11-14)||4’11” – 5’4″||55″ – 58″|
|Intermediate (12-14)||5’2″ – 5’8″||55″ – 58″|
|Senior (14+)||5’5″ – 5’10”||57″ – 61″|
To hook you up with the best price I’ve linked out to different retailers who stock each stick, for US, UK, and EU players. If you buy anything using these links it helps fund writing for HockeySkater.com at no extra cost to you.
If you’re looking for some buyers tips on choosing the right stick – check my mini guide below the reviews.
Let’s get down to it.
1. Warrior Covert QRE4 Junior
- Length: 51 inches (129cm)
The Warrior Covert QRE4 Junior is a lightweight, fiberglass, and carbon composite stick. It uses a tapered design with a low-kick point for quick release shots and excellent puck control.
You get some great features packed into this stick for the sub $100 range. This is a great stick for up and coming entry level players looking to improve their accuracy and speed.
- Edge taper design increases flex energy for faster shot release.
- One piece 12K carbon fiber stick is lightweight and easy to handle.
- Comfortable hold but no sticky grip.
🏆 Awards: Best Stick under $100
Where to buy?
2. Bauer Nexus 2N Pro Griptac Junior
- Length: 52 inches (132cm)
This is a high-end junior stick for young hockey players looking for lightweight and accurate stick. It uses a softer blade for accurate shooting and makes it easier for junior players to hit the puck at speed.
The shaft is coated with Duraflex Griptax grip technology which makes the stick feel slightly sticky and much easier to grip with less pressure. This makes it easier to control the stick in puck battles and when shooting on net at short notice.
This stick has a larger blade making it easier to poke-check and catch pucks from oncoming passes.
- GRIPTAC finish for a firm grip.
- Nexus mid-kick flex profile for releasing shots fast.
- 1x blade core reinforced dampening layer makes catching pucks at speed easier.
- One-piece monocomp shaft with a strong flex.
- Not the best durability for the price.
Where to buy?
3. CCM Jetspeed Composite 40
The CCM Jetspeed is a more affordable composite youth hockey stick. It’s a lightweight stick with a 40 flex ideal for younger players learning shot technique and those building into more powerful shooters.
The shaft is easy to grip and provides good control and is perfect for learning to and improving stickhandling. The geometry of the stick has been designed for younger players and fits comfortably in the hand for the duration of the game.
The carbon fiber construction makes this a durable stick with good flex for faster and high-speed shots on goal.
- 40 flex provides power with less force.
- Lightweight composite construction.
- Flex ratio allows younger players to bend the stick to load power while maintaining enough rigidity.
- P28 youth blade makes it easier to learn stickhandling technique.
Where to buy?
What to Look For in a Youth Stick
1. Blade Curve
Left or right?
First things first is to choose the righ blade direction. Either the blade curves left or it curves right. If your looking for your kids first stick and you don’t know your kid’s blade curve yet there is an easy way to learn.
Have them pick up a hockey stick (or a shovel or a net) and see which is their dominant hand. Their hand at the top of the shaft is nine times out of ten their dominant hand. If their right hand is up top then you’ll want to get a blade that curves left and vice versa.
- Have your child play with a stick.
- If their right hand is up top
- Choose the opposite blade curve (right curve).
There may be some exceptions to this but as a general rule of thumb it works out well for most players. You’re kid should also go with the one that feels the most comfortable.
If you’re having trouble deciding and your kid is very young or still getting used to holding a stick then you can get a flat curve that doesn’t bend in any direction. This is a great way of finding out the preferred curve bend after a few days of playing.
Most kids hockey sticks used a moderate curve which is a good all-purpose curve and fine for most players. If your kid wants to try something different then they may want a more aggressive curve which helps lift the puck up higher with less effort.
A hockey player can play with any curve pattern as it is all about learning the right technique and getting used to how the blade controls the puck.
The flex of a stick refers to how stiff or soft it is. Hockey players with the right technique can bend the stick to make shots and passes more powerful. While learning to play most youngsters won’t be using their flex to full use as it takes a while to learn the proper technique.
That said having the right flex stick is still important as it helps prepare your kid for later in their hockey life and it also gives you the right tools to work on your technique.
The trick for picking your kids stick flex is to take your child’s weight and half it – choosing the closes flex to that number.
- Childs Weight / 2 = Flex
So if your kid weighs 64lb – you’ll want a stick that is around the 30 mark. Here is a chart of the typical flex ranges across hockey players.
|Youth||20 – 35|
|Junior||40 – 50|
|Intermediate||55 – 70|
|Senior||75 – 120|
3. Stick Length
Stick length is key for any hockey player. Too long or short and it will interfere with your play, making it harder to control the puck and accurately aim when shooting.
Ideal stick length
A good stick length to aim for is for their stick to come up to just below their chin (when standing on skates) and near their nose when standing without skates.
To get this measurement, have your kid stand still against a wall and measure the distance from the floor to their nose (without skates) or chin (with skates).
Cutting changes the flex
A note on flex: cutting a hockey stick will cause the flex to increase. If a big cut is required consider moving down to a lower flex.
Too long or short
If your kid stick is too short it can make them be too hunched over or make their stick blade not sit flat on the ice – making it harder to control the puck.
If the stick is too long (the most common problem), they’re skating will be too upright without the right hockey stance (bent knees) and controlling the puck in stickhandling will be much harder. They will also be forced to hold it further down the shaft making it difficult or impossible to get any power in their shots through flexing.
Pass it down
Check you’re kids hockey stick length each season as they are continually growing and may have outgrown their stick length. If it is too short pass it down to a younger player.
4. Wood or Composite
The two main choices when it comes to picking a stick is between composites (fiberglass and/or carbon fiber ) and a wood stick.
Wood sticks are heavier and require more strength to control but there is no reason you can’t be a great player with just a wood stick. If you go back 20 years most players in the NHL used wooden sticks. They are great for learning to play and for shooting pucks in your backyard or local rink.
When you start playing in a team or practicing regularly, a composite stick is not a requirement, but it will help you control and shoot the puck with greater speed and more accuracy.
Composite sticks are:
- More expensive
- Easier to control the puck
- Lighter – less fatigue
Wood sticks are:
- Less durable
Picking the next stick for your child shouldn’t be hard. Get the right height, the right flex and choose a stick that matches their ability.
If they’re just starting out and figuring out how to hold a stick then a cheaper wood stick will do just fine.
If they’re playing regularly in on-ice practice then you can start looking at more advanced sticks that are lighter, help with stick handling and flexing for more powerful shots.