As a basketball enthusiast, I have researched and analyzed various basketballs that are suitable for kids. Introducing kids to basketball at a young age can aid in developing their fundamental skills such as passing, dribbling, and shooting.
To help young players gain confidence in their skills, it is advisable to begin with a youth size basketball. This is the size commonly used in most youth leagues. Not only does it enable them to learn the basics of the game, but it also boosts their morale.
Several youth size basketballs that resemble official size balls are available on the market. In this review, we will take a brief look at some of them.
Spalding NeverFlat Elite Indoor-Outdoor Basketball
- Suitable for both indoor and outdoor use
- Soft texture
- Only one size available
After thorough evaluation, we have selected this basketball as our top pick due to its durability and versatility. It can withstand outdoor conditions as well as indoor courts. Additionally, the composite faux leather cover with pebbling provides the right feel and flexibility for different types of play.
The NeverFlat Elite basketball comes with a lightweight sponge inner core and arrives fully inflated, which we appreciate. Whether you’re looking to practice at home or play at a gym, this ball is an excellent choice that offers value for its cost.
Wilson NCAA MVP Rubber Basketball
The Wilson NCAA MVP Rubber Basketball is an excellent choice for older children who are likely to enjoy using this ball. As the official ball supplier for the NCAA, Wilson has created a rubber version of the ball used in college-level play. The rubber exterior of this ball makes it lighter, making it more manageable for younger players. Additionally, it has a relatively high bounce, which makes it ideal for rebounding drills, and it is highly durable. Rubber basketballs typically last longer outdoors than their composite leather counterparts, and the Wilson NCAA MVP is no exception. Its durability and great feel make it the best outdoor basketball for young players currently available on the market.
To watch a video review of the Wilson NCAA MVP Rubber Basketball, click here.
KUYOTQ Kids/Youth Basketball
The KUYOTQ Kids/Youth Basketball is a premium quality foam rubber ball suitable for both indoor and outdoor play. With a standard size 5 (27.5″), it is designed for kids and youth and can handle intense full-body workouts in all kinds of venues. Its classic Red + Blue + White color combination makes it an excellent gift option for both boys and girls. The ball is shipped deflated but comes with a needle for easy inflation. Customers have praised the ball for its texture, value, and overall quality.
What we like about this product:
- Constructed from high-quality foam rubber
- Standard size 5 (27.5″) suitable for kids and youth
- Versatile for different venues
- Classic Red + Blue + White color combination
- Includes needle for inflation
MacGregor Multicolor Basketballs
- Color selection. The MacGregor basketballs come in a wide variety of colors, including purple, orange, blue, red, yellow, and green, in various sizes.
- Pebbling. The ball’s textured surface, called pebbling, provides better grip and control. This ball has deep pebbling that enhances its durability.
- Easy to inflate. Unlike some other basketballs, it is easy to attach the pump needle to the valve hole, making it simple to inflate.
- Initial inflation may not be enough. The ball may require additional inflations before use, as it may come folded and flat. This can result in ridges on the ball, which will disappear with proper inflation.
- Color availability varies by size. Not all colors are available in every size, and some sizes have limited color options.
Chance Premium Indoor/Outdoor Composite Leather
If you’re tired of the same old orange and black basketballs, Chance offers a variety of unique designs that are sure to make you stand out on the court. While they are slightly pricier than average outdoor basketballs, the quality of the ball itself is not as impressive as some of the others on this list. It may struggle to hold air well, but it does have decent bounce and grip. Overall, it’s worth considering if you value style over performance.
Best Youth Basketball for Kids: What to Consider
Youth basketballs are available in three different sizes, each with a specific age and gender group in mind. The size of the ball is measured by its diameter in inches and assigned a number. Size 6 is 28.5 inches and suitable for boys aged 12-14 and women and girls aged 12 and up. Size 5 is 27.5 inches and is intended for boys and girls aged 9-11. Size 4 is 25.5 inches and designed for boys and girls aged 5-8.
The weight of the basketball can affect a young player’s ability to shoot the ball. Lighter basketballs are easier for them to handle and shoot. The weight of the ball depends on its size and the type of material used.
It’s essential to choose the right type of basketball for where you’ll be playing. Indoor, outdoor, or indoor/outdoor options are available, but it’s vital to avoid using an indoor ball outside as it’s not designed for rough surfaces and will quickly wear down. Outdoor basketballs can usually be used indoors as well, as they are made of durable material suitable for rougher surfaces.
The grip of the basketball can vary depending on the material used. A good grip is essential to ensure the ball stays in your hands. It’s crucial to select a basketball that is made of durable material and will last for a long time.
Q. How often should I inflate a youth basketball?
A. It depends on how often your kids use the basketball. Each time a ball is dribbled or strikes a hard surface, it will lose a tiny amount of air. Older basketballs tend to lose air faster than newer balls. A ball that’s used daily probably should be checked for proper inflation once or twice a week.
Q. Do I need to store basketballs indoors?
A. To give your basketball the longest lifespan, it’s best to store it at a consistent temperature indoors. If the ball will be stored in an area where the temperature will not be controlled, like a garage, avoid placing the ball in direct sunlight. If the ball will be outdoors, try to store it in a dry location.
Q. Should I clean a basketball regularly?
A. If your kids play with the ball outdoors, it may get dirty or wet. After playing, you can wipe the ball with a damp cloth to remove dirt or other particles. For more stubborn soiling, you can use mild soap and warm water on the surface of the ball. If the ball becomes wet, allow it to air dry before using it again.
Q. What’s the best ball for a youth player who’s just starting the game?
A. Picking a versatile basketball is best for those new to the game. An indoor/outdoor ball that’s rubber or synthetic leather allows your child to use the ball anywhere. Select a ball that’s the right size for the child’s age. Using a ball that’s too large could lead to improper shooting form. Finally, if the child’s interest in the game will be sparked by a wildly colored ball, go for it!