News Report

News Report

Rules Update


Important rule updates to the 2015-16 season.

English Lacrosse would like to inform all members of the upcoming changes to the men’s rules for the 2015/16 season. Chair of English Lacrosse Referees & Rules Committee, Pete Davidson has summarised the major changes below.

Unified Field

The size and markings for a Lacrosse field have changed and you will need to familiarise yourselves with and understand the changes before you start to mark out your fields for the 2015/16 season. Full details are available on the ELA website at: LINK

It is accepted that in many cases playing fields will not accommodate the full 110m x 60m Lacrosse field, but where dimensions are reduced it is important that the reductions are applied to the right areas of the field i.e. Shorter field, reduction is made to the area between the goal area lines(restraining lines). Narrow fields, reduction is made from the area between the side line and the wing line. These details are all contained within the relevant diagrams on the website.

The other major differences that we expect all fields to comply with are:

  • Increased size of Goal Crease from 3 Yards to 3 meters (3.28 Yards)
  • Increased Gate Size from 10 Yards to 13 meters (14.22 Yards)
  • Reduced distance from Goal line to end line from 15 Yards to 12 meters (13.12 Yard)
  • Those fields requiring both men’s and women’s markings will need two Goal Area Lines (Restraining Lines) at each end of the field as well as the fan and other women’s markings. (See diagram “Unified Pitch Markings”).

    Download: A Guide to new pitch sizes

    If anyone needs any advice or support in interpreting / understanding these markings / dimensions Robin Howie, Secretary of Referees & Rules Committee has a good understanding of them and will be happy to assist you where he can. Robin can be contacted at:


    The changes to the goal specifications approved by the FIL in an earlierround of rule changes will be implemented into the English rules from 1st September 2015. The rule reads:

    RULE 2 – THE GOALS2.1 – Each goal shall consist of two vertical posts joined by a rigid cross-bar

    • These posts shall be 6 feet (1.83 metres) apart and the top cross-bar shall be 6 feet (1.83 metres) from the ground; all inside measurements.
    • The goal posts and cross-bar shall be collectively designated the pipes.

    2.2 – The goal posts shall be centred between the sidelines and shall be placed 12 meters (13.12 yards) from each end line.

    2.3 – The pipes shall be made of one and one half inch (3.81 centimetres) metal pipewith an outside diameter of approximately 2 inches (5cm).

    • They shall be painted orange and secured to the ground.
    • A line shall be drawn between the goal posts to indicate the plane of the goal, and it shall be designated the goal line.

    2.4 The goal posts shall be:

    • Either sunk into the ground so that no ground pipes are used; or supported by flat metal bars, no more than 0.5 inches (1.27 centimetres) thick.
    • Goals should be constructed in a manner such that when a ball enters the goal-mouth and it is a goal, the ball shall not re-enter the field of play.

    NB: For games played under NEMLA League & cup competition Rules, NEMLA Management Committee has considered the implications of the rule change in respect of goal design and the potential problems in replacing multiple sets of goals. NEMLA expects all competing teams to use the correct design of goals as soon as possible. All first teams are expected to use the correct goals from the start of the 2015/16 season (teams new to the league or with severe financial issues may be granted a temporary exemption from this requirement but should contact the NEMLA Management Committee as soon as possible). Other teams will be expected to have the correct goals for the start of the 2016/17 season.

    Mouth Guard

    The revised rule regarding personal equipment reads:

    RULE 17 PERSONAL EQUIPMENT17.1 All players are required to wear protective gloves, suitable boots or shoes, and a protective helmet equipped with a facemask and a chinstrap, which must be properly fastened on both sides. All players, including the designated goalkeeper, must properly wear an intra-oral tooth and mouth protector (mouth guard).

    A mouth guard shall be defined as:

    • A commercial product designed to be moulded to the player’s teeth and jaw and to cover all teeth of the upper-jaw; or
    • A custom moulded product produced by a dental professional that covers all teeth of the upper-jaw; or
    • A custom moulded intra-oral product produced by a dental professional designed to protect the player from injury.

    It is recommended that the mouth guard be highly visible in colour: i.e., neither white nor clear. The mouth guard will be mandatory personal equipment for FIL events starting with the 2016 FIL under 19 world championship, and all ELA events from the 1st September 2015.

    Any Player not wearing a Mouth Guard will not be allowed to participate in the game.

    Other Changes

    The three areas highlighted above are the areas where action will be required before the start of the new season, there are other changes to the playing rules, which are detailed in the attached documents, both of which were circulated as part of the consultation carried out by ELA in December 2014. A fully revised and updated copy of the Rules of English Lacrosse will be posted to the ELA website within the next couple of weeks.

    Preparing Your Referees for the changes.

    Referees & Rules Committee will be hosting a Pre-Season Referees Seminar on Sunday 13th September 2015 at Heaton Mersey Lacrosse Club. The primary focus of this day will be to prepare referees of all levels to understand and apply all the rule changes. All referees are welcome to attend, so please ensure that all your club officials are aware of this. Advanced booking will be required via Dave Doolan at

    Download: 2015/16 Men’s Rule Changes


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