Each provincial association has jurisdiction over clubs, leagues and associations but typically share a common structure as follows:
Participation Leagues (House Leagues)
- at the grass roots level of an organization, teams are formed to organize recreational play.
- the objective is fun, fitness and skill development.
- depending upon the age level, contact may or may not be involved.
- modified rules in younger age categories may include: players are rotated in 3 minute shifts; when the ball is turned over, the attacking team must clear the offensive zone; shootouts; 5-second possession rule; a minimum number of passes must be attempted before a shot on goal, etc.
- the season usually begins in the spring and ends in early summer.
- skill levels will vary and teams are usually balanced to encourage skill development.
Example of age categories:
- the next level involves the organizations' best players competing as a select, all-star or rep team.
- various levels of competitions exist and can be defined by skill level - A, B, C, etc. or by age.
- National Championships occur annually - Minor (under 16), Junior, Senior.
- the award for the premiere junior (17-21) national championships are the Minto Cup (Junior A) and Founders Cup (Junior Tier 1).
- the best senior player teams in Canada (over 21) play for the Mann Cup (Senior A) and President Cup (Senior B).
- opportunities exist for elite athletes to secure athletic scholarships to American universities.
- the vast majority of players on Canada 's national field team played box lacrosse.
- after an absence of a professional league in North American since the 1970's, the National Lacrosse League (NLL) is experiencing a huge resurgence in Canada .
- the league is comprised of Canadian and American teams.
- it is not uncommon for teams to play in front of crowds of more than 10,000 spectators.