Most of you, if not all of you, have a not-so-attractive picture in your head right now. In fact, many of you probably know someone who claims to be a “lax bro.”
As the sport of lacrosse continues to expand in terms of both audience and participants, this “lax bro” persona has only become more mainstream as well.
And not just within the lacrosse community, but also within popular culture.
This is where we encounter a problem.
Somehow, the term found its way into common vocabulary—and since then it can be attributed with terms such as careless, cocky, and lazy to name the more prevalent examples. There is also a connotation referring to one who partakes in excess partying and partying “activities.”
I am aware that some of you will disagree with this generalization, as you may consider yourself a “Lax Bro,” but the point is to illustrate how a large part of society—outside of the lacrosse community—views both lacrosse players and the game itself.
I, for one, do not feel the “lax bro” persona should be one that is being displayed to the world outside the lacrosse community, by the lacrosse community. I cannot count the number of times that people, upon the realization I play lacrosse, say, “Oh, so you’re a Lax Bro?”
Well, no, I am not a “lax bro” simply because I play lacrosse. And I most certainly do not wish to be categorized into a group that is known for the previously-mentioned traits.
On the surface, this issue seems to be extremely minuscule and pointless to ponder. Though, it is difficult to deny that this persona and character have much to do with the recent explosion in tacky lacrosse apparel.
If you are unfamiliar with this “tacky lacrosse apparel,” take a trip to a local sporting goods store. If they sell lacrosse-related apparel, I almost guarantee you will find pinnies, shorts, t-shirts—even socks—donning ignorant slogans or cartoonish visuals barely relating to lacrosse.
The sport of lacrosse has one of the most dedicated sports communities in the world. This is a large reason as to why the game has spread so rapidly, even with close to no television or radio coverage.
However, I fear the community is being transformed into a disturbinly immature population—focused on how “cool” their shorts and pinnies are—rather than improving their lacrosse skills and actually contributing to the growth of lacrosse as a sport.
Do not get me wrong, there remains plenty of dedicated lacrosse fans and players who provide greatly in order to take the game to increasing popularity. At the moment, it just so happens that the lacrosse community needs more of these fans and players, than it needs “lax bros.”
The “lax bro” needs to go.