You can’t have a game without it! Made of plastic and pitted like a golf ball, it has a diameter the size of a post-it™ note and its colour has to contrast with the pitch.
The only other piece of hockey equipment you just can’t do without, and these can be made of fibreglass, Kevlar, carbon fibre or wood. The ‘hook’ (curved part) was originally patented by a Dutch man named Toon Coolen in 1982 – before then, it looked more like an ice-hockey stick.
Artificial turf, water-based for improved ball speed and a smooth roll, and with artificial fibres that are densely packed for stabilisation. The surfaces are always being improved with new discoveries frequently being made in artificial fibres.
Specifically designed for use on artificial turf, they’re designed for grip – but you’ll still see players sliding to try and get the ball!
Mandatory to spare players the worst of the injuries that could be picked up in a frantic game of hockey, they now carry extra padding to lessen the potential bruises and they were originally inspired by armour (called ‘greaves’) that warriors used to wear in battle.
An experienced drag flicker can get the ball up to 75 mph (120km/h), which is as fast as a cheetah!
To buy hockey equipment in the UK, visit England Hockey’s online shop
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