Table of Contents
- 1 3 Cool Official Match Soccer Balls – Comparison Chart
- 2 5 Best Soccer Balls to Buy for Training/Practice – Comparsion Table
- 3 3 Popular Indoor/Futsal Soccer Balls Reviews – Comparison Chart
- 4 3 Top Quality Beach Soccer Balls – Comparison Table
- 5 Best Street Soccer Balls
- 6 3 Cool Official Match Soccer Balls – Detail Reviews
- 7 5 Best Soccer Balls to Buy for Training/Practice – Detail Reviews
- 8 3 Popular Indoor/Futsal Soccer Balls Reviews – Detail Reviews
- 9 3 Top Quality Beach Soccer Balls – Detail Reviews
- 10 Top Street Soccer Ball Review
- 11 Soccer Ball Buying Guide and Knowledgebase
- 12 Conclusion
After spending more than 45 hours of research on multiple soccer balls across the spectrum of air retention, rebound, durability, and usability finally we made this best soccer balls review and buying guide for you.
How did we research and why should you consider our list as a trusted source?
- In this soccer ball reviews guide we have reviewed 5 different types of soccer balls separately (official match soccer balls, practice soccer balls, indoor/futsal balls, beach soccer balls, street balls). We guess this will ease your way to gain the knowledge on the right product based on your purpose.
- We picked some of the popular balls and reviewed them to make this list.
- We were not influenced or biased towards any particular brand during the review process.
- Both the pros and cons are written down against each product.
- What were the parameters we took into consideration? We considered the price, usability, purpose, quality, performance, user acceptance.
- None of the products will break your bank.
Best Soccer Balls at a Glance
- Adidas Telstar 18 – Best official match ball
- Adidas MLS Top Glider – Best practice ball
- Mikasa SX50 Indoor Ball – Top indoor soccer ball
- Select Beach Ball – Top beach soccer ball
- Senda Street Ball – Best street soccer ball
3 Cool Official Match Soccer Balls – Comparison Chart
5 Best Soccer Balls to Buy for Training/Practice – Comparsion Table
3 Popular Indoor/Futsal Soccer Balls Reviews – Comparison Chart
3 Top Quality Beach Soccer Balls – Comparison Table
Best Street Soccer Balls
3 Cool Official Match Soccer Balls – Detail Reviews
1. Adidas Telstar 18 – The World Cup 2018 FIFA Approved Official Match Ball
Air Retention: 4.6/5
Cover: Synthetic leather
Panel: 6 panels – Thermally bonded
Overall performance: 5 / 5
Television + Star = Telstar balls were first used in the 1970 world cup where the ball was of 32 panels having black and white colors. Telstar 18 that was used in world cup 2018 is another masterclass production from Adidas. This time they have made it a 6 panels balls keeping the same black and white combination.
While we are reviewing the original version here, you will also find the top replique, glider, and mini version for this model. But of course, quality and performance will not be the same although you can buy them at cheaper price.
The 2010 world cup ball Jabulani was being criticized by the players for its inconsistent behavior through the air. Later the Brazuca soccer ball that was used in 2014 world cup solved the problem. The Telstar 18 is almost similar to Brazuca 2.0 in terms of performance but more consistent through the air for the long shots.
After performing a drop test on Jubalani, Brazuca, and Telstar 18, the Telstar 18 outperformed the Jubalani, and did slightly better than Brazuca. That means in terms of rebounding Telstar 18 was the winner.
As we said performance wise this ball is pretty similar to the Brazuca 2.0 version. But the curve and consistency are better in case of Telstar 18 for the long shots. From this perspective, goalkeepers will love this ball as well. The free kick takers will find it easier to control their shots better than before as they can dominate the curve better this time. This ball performs well for the header as well. Telstar is also faster than Brazuca 2.0.
The main downside of this ball is, it travels a bit less over long distance kick than the Brazuca 2.0. Otherwise, we found this version a perfect one to go for.
Aesthetically you may or may not like the ball as this one is not anything fancy in colors. Here the base is white with black detailing. But the feel, control, and grip are better than other versions. 3D texture panels ensure the grip and control.
This is a 6 panels thermally bonded ball. The shape of the panel is a bit unusual though. But we think that helps the ball to perform well through the air. The valve is red in color, and it looks good. These 6 panels are designed in a way so that it ensures maximum and equal distribution of energy when kicked. This is another reason for the consistency through the air of this ball.
TSBE technology ensures minimal water uptake, and butyl bladder helps the ball to retain the air for a longer period of time. The cover is made from synthetic leather which is one of the most useful materials for any soccer ball in terms of performance.
Don’t bother about the NFC chip. It is mostly for the promotional purpose. It does not add any value in terms of performance, so we are not overwhelmed with that feature.
Overall this is a perfect option to go for if you are looking for quality, durability and consistent performance. Although the price is a bit higher. You will get almost similar performance (but not the exact same) from Bend-It soccer balls spending around half of the money than Telstar 18.
2. Bend-IT Champions League Soccer Balls
Air Retention: 4.8/5
Panel: Thermally bonded
Overall performance: 5 / 5
According to Bend-IT, they make balls maintaining the quality of Barclays Premier League (BPL), German Bundesliga, Spanish La Liga BBVA, Liga MX, Italian Serie A TIM and the Eredivisie leagues.
What we like most about these balls is the Visual Response Color (VRC) technology that allows you to see the ball move, rotate, and bend against any background through the air. So, as per our findings, clear visibility is the most attractive part that will help you to improve your kicking.
Next benefit you will get from these balls is the Valve Position Marker (VPM) that shows you the sweet spot that means the proper foot position on the ball or you can say the place where you should kick it. But this will help you only when you are taking free kicks, penalties or corners.
To test the importance of Valve Position Marker (VPM), we will advise you to take free kicks four times. Two times making the shot at arbitrary positions on the ball, and two times on the VPM. You will find that the result is noticeably different.
Let’s have some knowledge about the construction now.
This model is made out of 100% PU cover that ensures durability and leather-like feeling.
As they have water-resistant textured latex material that helps to have excellent control over the ball not only when shooting but also when a goalkeeper handles it.
The thermally bonded construction that allows you to kick the ball as hard as you want without worrying about the longevity.
We must admire the shape retention capability of all the Bend-It models.
Butyl bladder provides a longer period of air retention.
Instead of buying any replica promotional balls, we would suggest you to buy these balls because of the affordability that these models provide. According to Bend-It, you are getting one ball for the price of three balls.
From our point of view, we should consider it as a true statement because not only this model but also other models from Bend-it are very reasonable for the quality they provide. Bend-it offers 70% lower price compared to other thermally fused official balls available on the market.
Only size 5 is available for this model. So if you want to buy a different size, then you should not go for this option.
If you are not sure about the different sizes of a soccer ball (i.e., size 5, size 4, size 3, size 2, size 1), then click here to read our guide.
All together, all of these models are capable of performing like an original official ball, but the price is noticeably less. These are obviously FIFA tested and approved models. If you want to know the FIFA testing process, click here.
3. Adidas Euro Qualifier Official Match Ball
Air Retention: 4/5
Cover: Synthetic Polyurethane (PU) leather
Panel: Thermally bonded
Overall performance: 4.6 / 5
This is another high-quality ball from Adidas. Pricing is moderately high, but you should accept the price if you are looking for a quality option. This ball was used in 2016 Euro qualification matches, so definitely it was tested and passed by FIFA.
As far as the graphics are concerned, this is mainly a white soccer ball, and this is one of the Brazuca variants we should say. The graphics don’t follow the panel shape that gives it a unique look.
Only two minimalist silver and red colored pattern on the ball that makes it simple styling without anything really flashy. So if you are a fan of the simplistic design, then this is a perfect choice for you.
This time we are going to test a ball that is made out of 100% synthetic polyurethane leather, which is the best regarding quality. This is the main feature that took our attention and forced us to keep this model from Adidas on our list.
The panels are also thermally bonded that means the surface is seamless.
Altogether from our experience, we found a good response, and rebound from this model.
We found a fantastic touch and feel due to the synthetic leather cover, which offers lower water uptake as well, and more predictable trajectory.
Butyl rubber is used to make the bladder for a longer period of air retention. But obviously official match balls do not retain air for long like practice balls.
So, all in all, this is a quality option that you can trust. Only size 5 is available for this model.
5 Best Soccer Balls to Buy for Training/Practice – Detail Reviews
Despite having so many good reviews from the users, why aren’t we keeping Wilson traditional ball on our list? It is because we strongly think Wilson is specialized in making tennis equipment. On the other hand, this model did not meet our expectation. This model seems too heavy to us, and overall feel was not too good. That is why we are not recommending you to go for this option. But obviously, the final decision is yours. So many people are still buying this 🙂
1. Adidas MLS Top Glider – Our Best Pick in Practice Ball Category
Air Retention: 4.5/5
Cover: Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU)
Panel: Machine stitched
Overall performance: 4.8 / 5
Adidas is undoubtedly specialized in making all type of soccer equipment, and we recommend their balls more than any other brands.
As per our online study, this MLS top glider model is specially manufactured for training, practice and recreational playing purpose. We found a lot of good reviews on this version. Hence we kept this on our short list.
Please note, we are keeping the older version of Adidas MLS Top Glider. Because this is a tested warrior.
Anyways, at first, we tried to see how comfortable this ball is during the kick or head. The feel is quite perfect we must say. It is not too hard, not too soft. So we can say regarding the feel on foot, and head this can be an ideal choice.
As per our study, The cover is made out of thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU). The combination of machine stitched construction, nylon wound carcass, and TPU offers durability, water resistance, and soft feeling.
We already examined the feeling; now it’s time to examine the durability and water resistance. Now we are going to reveal the result of the water resistance capability. The fact is even after few weeks of play you will find the ball is performing quite well, only if you use it for practice and recreational purpose.
Due to the butyl rubber bladder, the air retention is also good.
There are three sizes available for this ball. Size 5, size 4 and size 3. Which size means what? We wrote a clear guideline on this. Choose the right size during the buying process.
2. One World Ball
Air Retention: 5/5
Cover: Ethylene-vinyl acetate foam
Overall performance: 4.6 / 5
One of the main reasons but not the only reason to select this ball for reviewing is the great mission of the company. If you buy one ball, they will donate one ball to the kids of developing countries against your purchase. So, this is a “Buy One, Give One” charity model, and of course, it is a good mission where you can also contribute by buying one.
But should this be the only reason to go for this one for practice/training purpose? The answer is “No”. This ball must serve the real purpose of buying.
So, let’s analyze the reasons behind we have chosen this ball for practicing and recreational match purpose.
By the way, we must say this is not an official match ball, and you shouldn’t use this for competitive tournament play.
Well, this ball is virtually indestructible. Even after being run over by a truck it will keep on balancing. You set it on fire, see the result, there will be no damage done. You can play with this ball on concrete, on a green field, on any rough and tough surface, or even on sand. So in terms of durability, you can rest assured.
What amazed us most is this soccer ball never needs a pump, and never goes flat. One world balls are made from special foam that is called as “ethylene-vinyl acetate foam” that allows them to re-inflate. It does not break even if it is punctured. See the videos below for the proof.
So it is now clear to you that you won’t have to worry about the air retention capability, durability. Now, how good is the playability? Well, in terms of rebounding, this ball performs almost like a standard ball but obviously not exactly like standard balls. Having said that, we must say the rebound is enough for recreational play and practicing purpose. You will also find this ball a bit heavier than standard balls during the shots. That is why we don’t suggest you use this option for tournament play.
This can be used as a great option for goalkeeper training as well. Why? Look, you can hardly see the lines on this ball, hence you won’t be able to guess the direction by only seeing the spin of the ball. That means as a goalkeeper you will have to give full concentration to detect the direction of the sliding balls. This is obviously helpful if you are a goalkeeper, and looking for a sliding challenge.
Only size 5, and size 4 are available for this. Although this should not be a major problem as this is for recreational play and practicing purpose, so kids are ok to play with this as well. In fact, the ball that will be given away to the developing countries will be used by the kids mostly. If you are buying this for an adult go for size 5, and if you are buying for kids or youth players then better go for size 4.
This is considered as one of the best balls for the dogs. The ball stays inflated even after getting bites from your dog month after month.
3. Adidas miCoach Smart Soccer Ball – High Quality Ball for Practice
Air Retention: 4.6/5
Panel: Thermally bonded
Overall performance: 5 / 5
Warning! This option is only for those who are serious about their training and learning. Because the price is very high. With that being said, the technologies that are implemented in this ball makes it a smart ball indeed.
Is not that cool seeing a ball acting like your coach?
Yes, this ball can record and give you instant feedback on the power, spin, trajectory, and strike point of your kick. You can track the flight path of each of your kick too.
Using sensors. Yes, a sensor package is installed inside the ball that collects and provides information to your iOS or Android app.
The sensor detects the speed of your kick, the amount of spin, trajectory, foot-strike point and sends the information to your device via Bluetooth. The miCoach SMART BALL app is compatible with iOS version 7 or higher, Android version 4.3 or higher, and Windows 10. The app gives you tips to improve your performance as well.
This has thermal bonded 32 panels, PU cover, butyl bladder to ensure durability and air retention.
This ball comes with rechargeable battery, while one charge is enough for 2000 kicks per week. It will take only one hour to charge the battery fully. Charging base and AC power plug are included with every purchase you make.
While this is an excellent choice for training with the number of features and tips with video recording, still we think this is a very expensive choice considering the purpose and usability. The price should have been lower than the current price. But if you feel the price is ok for you to spend, then don’t worry about the quality. Go for it.
4. Mikasa Serious Soccer (SS Series) Ball
Air Retention: 4.5/5
Cover: Soft cushioned composite cover
Panel: Hand stitched
Overall performance: 4.5 / 5
Mikasa released a number of soccer balls on the market, according to our experience this model is one of the best models when you are finding training balls. One of the main reasons behind our consideration is you won’t regret using this model considering the money you have to spend. This is a very much affordable option for you.
We first wanted to see if the ball provides enough softness to foot, head, and chest. Well, this model provides a quite satisfactory level of softness during the impact due to its soft cushioned composite cover, and machine stitching panels.
As this is a machine stitched soccer ball, younger players will find it easy to control. Usually, younger players find less control from hand-stitched balls, but for the adults, hand stitching is not a problem to control. But this is not something obvious but just a preference. So control of the ball is quite ok we should say.
Next, we wanted to see the responsiveness of the ball. As it has 2-ply butyl bladder, it was expected that we are not going to get too much responsiveness from this model. In reality, the responsiveness was not that high but not too low either. Quite ok to be a good practice ball.
While the responsiveness was so-so, the air retention capability was quite satisfactory as well. You won’t have to inflate this ball too often.
Obviously, you should limit your expectation because this is one of the budget balls available on the market. You can’t expect a budget choice is performing like a premium choice. But for practice or training session or to play a recreational match, this is a good to go choice.
Please note, there are only 3 sizes available for this model; size 5, size 4, and size 3. So it is crucial that if you are looking for size 2 or size 1, then this is not an option for you. So, choose the right size before buying so that you don’t regret after receiving the purchase. If you are not sure which size means what then click here to read our guideline.
5. Adidas MLS Top Training NFHS
Air Retention: 4.4/5
Cover: Thermoplastic polyurethane(TPU)
Panel: Thermally bonded
Overall performance: 4.4 / 5
Well, there is doubt in people’s mind whether this is NFHS approved or not. But we don’t care about that issue in this case because we just wanted to make sure if this serves our practicing purpose or not.
This is, in fact, our best pick from practice ball list. So let’s find out the reason behind choosing this as our best pick.
This time there is no stitching to attach the panels, but they are thermally bonded. This is the interesting part. First, we wanted to see how it performs in the air for a free kick. You will find a decent, predictable trajectory. Although when you are knuckling, the result mainly depends on your skill and the air direction, a ball plays a vital role as well to help your process of a successful knuckle shot.
Next, we wanted to see, how this model feels during the kick and head. As the panels are attached seamlessly; expectedly we found it comfortable to kick and head the ball.
We found the control of the ball was excellent as well. Overall the control and feel are very similar to match balls.
Any thermally bonded panels should have better water resistance and longer air retention power.
Because in this case there is no stitching meaning the ball is seamless. Where there is no involvement of seam, it is very normal that the air has got lesser space to go out from the ball.
The bladder is also made out of butyl rubber, whose core responsibility is to ensure the longer period of air retention.
All together this ball performs well regarding air retention.
So, all in all, this is a perfect choice for practicing purpose. You can expect good control, less water absorption, predictable trajectory, comfortable feeling, durability and shape retention, a longer period of air retention, a satisfactory level of responsiveness.
Three different sizes are available for this ball; size 5, size 4, and size 3. Be sure to choose the right size before buying.
3 Popular Indoor/Futsal Soccer Balls Reviews – Detail Reviews
Mikasa SX50 Indoor Ball
This is a felt cover ball, which is the major characteristics of an indoor soccer ball. Durable felt cover offers the softness and helps to control the rebounding characteristics. This is a size 5 ball with hand stitched panels. Hand stitched panels are more durable than machine stitched panels. The bounce is not too high, which should be the case of a standard indoor soccer ball.
Tachikara SS32 “Soft Kick”
This is another popular model for indoor playing. “Soft Kick” is a foam backed fabric cover ideal for indoor playing, and skill development of younger players.
Mikasa D100 American Futsal Ball
This is a size 4 ball with deluxe stitched cushion cover. Please keep in mind that size 4 is the standard size of a futsal ball. Correlating the budget and quality, we recommend you to buy this model. Like any other futsal ball, this one also bounces less than a standard ball.
3 Top Quality Beach Soccer Balls – Detail Reviews
1. Select Beach Ball
Water Resistance: 5/5
Scratch Resistance: 5/5
Panel: Hand stitched
Overall performance: 4.8 / 5
Offering the comfort by making the covers with the soft material is one of the top most priorities of any beach ball. This model from “Select” provides that comfort. But more importantly, it ensures water resistance more than Senda Playa beach ball that we reviewed earlier. There is a water-repellent soft material that is used to make the cover.
Using multiple bright colors is another characteristic a beach soccer ball should have, and this one has mainly three different bright colors (green, blue, white). That is why you will get good visibility during playing on sand.
This model has the perfect weight that is required to play on the beach to minimize the unpredictability. Hand-stitched panels but the stitching are so soft that it feels like there is no stitching when you kick the ball.
2. Senda Playa Beach Ball
Water Resistance: 4.6/5
Scratch Resistance: 4.5/5
Bladder: Latex rubber
Cover: Thermoplastic polyurethane(TPU)
Panel: Hand stitched
Overall performance: 4.6 / 5
Comfort during the shot should be the number one factor to watch out when you are buying a beach soccer ball. Senda Playa offers you that comfort from its larger, and softer panels. So, you will find it very easy to shot the ball barefooted. The panels are scratch-resistant too that makes it suitable for playing on the rough sand beach. No doubt, like any other beach ball, this one also offers water-resistant cover too.
As you will be using this ball on the rough sand, it is important to have the panels manually stitched. That means hand-stitched seam is a big plus for the sake of durability of the panels. Senda Playa beach soccer balls are hand-stitched, that is why we found this one as a good choice regarding durability.
The bladder is made out of latex rubber (with four layers of polyester/cotton hybrid lining) that helps it to retain the shape and bounce.
Altogether this is one of the top notch soccer balls to buy if you are searching a ball to play on the sand beach.
3. Baden Praia Beach Ball
Water Resistance: 4/5
Scratch Resistance: 4/5
Cover: Thermoplastic polyurethane(TPU)
Panel: Hand stitched
Overall performance: 4/5
Baden Praia is another colorful beach ball on our recommendation list, but only if you are on a budget. Otherwise, you should go for the other two options we recommended above.
This ball has all the essential qualities that a beach soccer ball should have. Especially the weight is higher than the other two balls that we reviewed. Being heavier is considered as an essential requirement of a beach soccer ball to minimize the unpredictability.
The construction is also not bad. The cover is made of deluxe cushioned TPU with water-resistant 20 panels. Butyl bladder offers a longer period of air retention.
Although this ball is well constructed, but from our experience, we will only recommend you to buy this one if you are searching for a budget ball. Otherwise, our recommendation is to go for Select beach soccer ball that we reviewed earlier. You will get much better quality and feel from it than this one.
Top Street Soccer Ball Review
1. Senda Street Soccer Ball- Our Best Pick in Street Ball Category
Scratch Resistance: 4.7/5
Panel: Hand stitched
Overall performance: 5/5
So many buyers make one common mistake, and then they either regret or put negative comments against the purchase. What is that mistake? They either buy a practice or official match balls but eventually use it to play on the concrete or hard surface. Consequently, the ball does not last long.
We all should keep in mind that the construction of a standard soccer ball is different than a street soccer ball. When you are playing on street or hard surface, you need a rough and tough ball. The shape needs to be spherical, and the cover/panels should be made out of rubber. They need to be scratch resistant as well. Not only that, if the panels are not hand-stitched with the high-quality seam there is a big chance they will not last long.
All in all a street soccer ball needs to be rough and tough with all the attributes we discussed so far. Senda street soccer ball has fulfilled all these requirements, and met our expectation. We recommend you to buy this option if you want to play on street or hard surface. We found this as a good quality model with the proper construction as we discussed. The weight and bounce are also according to the requirement of a street soccer ball.
Soccer Ball Buying Guide and Knowledgebase
Let’s discuss the construction of a ball first, and also the different materials that are used to make it.
Why is it important to know the construction?
Because it will help you to understand the impacts that different materials and their variations usually put on the performance and longevity of the ball.
Soccer Ball Construction
Cover is the outermost part of a ball which is responsible for providing the feel, softness, durability, and usability. The appearance of a ball also depends on how beautiful the cover is.
So, now you realize the variation of the cover depends on the materials mainly, right? Obviously, the material of the cover of a street soccer ball is not same as the material of the cover of an official soccer ball.
Eventually, the question that is playing on your mind now is, what are the materials that are used to make the cover of different balls?
Mostly there are three types of materials you will find that are used to make the cover. i) Synthetic leather, ii) Polyurethane (PU), iii) Poly Vinyl Carbonate (PVC).
Let’s find out what they are, and what are the roles they actually play?
Synthetic leather is used to make highest quality balls. You are quite sure by now that these are the most expensive ones among the tree types of cover material (i.e. Polyurethane (PU) and Poly Vinyl Carbonate(PVC)).
Synthetic leather will give you a great feel, control, and softness but they are less durable and less water resistant than PVC or PU.
This material is used to make the premium match balls.
Polyurethane is staying in between Synthetic leather and PVC regarding quality. This material will give you a leather-like feeling, and regarding durability, they are almost as durable as PVC.
A ball made out of PU is used to play competitive matches due to its preferred feel and reliability. The downside is that a PU made balls may scuff and degenerate faster than the PVC made ones.
Poly Vinyl Carbonate (PVC)
PVC ensures the durability. The balls made of PVC don’t scuff easily like PU or synthetic leather.
While durability is the main benefit of this material, the other side of the coin is they are less flexible than synthetic leather, and Polyurethane, resulting in less control. Very often you will find glossy coating to help increase water-resistant, and additional protection.
PVC made balls are perfect for practicing. These are the least expensive ones among these three types of materials.
By now, we hope you have good knowledge about the different materials that are used to make the cover.
Now let’s move on to the next part. Yes, we want to talk about panel now.
Well, panels are not any different component. Panels are the segments or octagon quilt that are seen outside the balls. Of course, nowadays you will find some other shapes besides octagon. FIFA official balls usually contain 32 panels. But nowadays you will also find 26, 18, 14, 8 or even 6 panels with different shapes and designs from those of conventional balls.
What does the number of panels determine?
They determine the control and movement through the air. Fewer panels (ranging from 6 to 26 panels) will make the ball faster and curve more through the air because of the less stability. On the other hand, more panels offer control and playability.
There are two ways so far to place the panels on the lining; stitching or gluing.
The highest quality balls are stitched, and that is why they are more durable than glued ones. Stitching can be done by using a machine or manually. Manual stitching means the balls are hand-stitched. Hand-stitched balls are more durable than its machine stitched counterparts.
Usually, in the case of practice balls, the panels are glued together onto the lining. Glued balls offer harder feeling than those of stitched balls, and they are less expensive as well.
Lining is the middle part that is placed in between cover/panels and bladder. Lining plays an important role by giving the ball an incredible shape, structure, and control. More layer of lining with polyester and cotton helps to retain the shape and bounce over the time.
The high-quality balls have four layers of polyester and cotton lining to give them strength, and bounce. Mid quality balls usually have two layers of polyester and two levels of cotton lining. On the other hand, low levels ones usually have two levels of polyester lining.
If you say the cover and lining is the body parts of a ball then I will say the bladder is the heart of it. It is the innermost part and contains air. Bladder gives the ball shape and movement.
There are mostly two types of bladders: i) Butyl, ii) Latex
Butyl bladders are not as responsive as latex bladders, but they can retain air for a longer period than latex bladders. That is why they require less frequent air refills, and they are easier to maintain. This type of bladder is used to make mid-priced or cheaper balls.
Latex bladders are used in high-quality balls. These kind of bladders are soft and provide good feeling. They offer better response and bounce than Butyl bladders, but the downside of this kind of bladder is they don’t hold the air for too long. As a result, they require filling more frequently. Air escapes due to micropores on the cover, but nowadays some balls are constructed with carbon latex bladder to help to close these micropores. As a result, the balls can hold air for a longer period.
We hope it’s been a good journey so far to know about the ball construction and the materials that are used to make different parts of it. Now let’s read about the various sizes of the balls.
Soccer ball sizes
Choosing the right size according to your age groups is important. Not only based on the age groups but also based on different leagues. The reason is different leagues use different sized balls. So you should buy the perfect size so that your practice makes you perfect for league matches.
So what are the different sizes and what size is right for you? Let’s have a look.
Size 5 soccer balls
Size 5 is for adult aging over 12 years. That means from 13 years of age and above. So definitely size 5 is used in the major tournaments or league plays.
These balls have a circumference of 27-28 inches and weigh 14-16 ounces.
Size 4 soccer balls
Size 4 is used by the children who are in the learning stage, ranging from 8-12 years of age.
These balls have a circumference of 25-26 inches and weigh 12-13 ounces.
Size 3 soccer balls
Size 3 soccer balls are for children under the age of 8.
The circumference of these balls varies from 23-24 inches, and weight is 11-12 ounces.
Size 2 soccer balls
Size 2 balls are played by the children aging below 4 years. These balls are also used for ball control drills.
The circumference of size 2 balls varies from 20-22 inches.
Size 1 soccer balls
These are called mini or skill balls. Because the clubs use these balls to train their players to improve their skill and ball control.
Now you know that there are total 5 variations in ball size. Buy the appropriate size as per your requirement. Some buyers who don’t know these differences, make a mistake while buying. For example, if someone is looking for an official match ball, but they purchase a size 3 ball by mistake or because of lack of knowledge. If you also do this, surely you are not going to be satisfied with the purchase.
So, what’s next? So far you have gone through the construction and the different size variations. You probably got the idea of which material is used to make what type of balls and which size is suitable as per your age or necessity.
Now let’s have some knowledge on different types of balls. Why? If you know what the different types mean, then you will be able to make a correlation between your requirement and the characteristics of various types.
There are several types of balls available these days. We are going to give you some ideas on each major type one by one.
Premium Match Soccer Balls
These are used in international level matches and top league matches like UEFA Champions League, Italian Serie A, English Premier League, Spanish La Liga, Bundesliga, Major League Soccer. Not only these but also all the tournaments approved by FIFA. So you can easily understand that these are the highest quality balls with the highest level of air retention, shape, water absorption, trajectory, curve, and performance. Otherwise, FIFA would not have approved these balls.
These are size 5 balls. As these are the highest quality balls so you easily can understand that their cover is made out of either synthetic leather or premium quality polyurethane (PU).
Official Match Soccer Balls
When it is about quality, these are almost same as premium match soccer balls but obviously not the same. To be exact, you can say official match soccer balls are positioning between premium match balls and training soccer balls regarding quality. That means these balls also offer an excellent level of air retention, shape, water absorption, curve, and performance. Although usually, they are not as durable as training balls but as a whole, they are very much durable.
These are often NFHS, and NCAA approved to play high school or college team soccer matches.
Obviously, these are the cheaper options than premium match balls.
Training Soccer Balls
Training/practice soccer balls are highly durable and tough. Most of the training balls are made of PVC covers and latex bladder to ensure the durability and playability. But this is not obvious. Some of them are also made of butyl bladder and PU covers.
Usually, these balls have four or fewer layers of lining. These are the least expensive ones compared to other types.
Turf Soccer Balls
These are another form of balls that are durable and tough. You can play with these on the hard surface where there is no grass. They are specially made for this purpose. They are mostly hand-stitched that ensures the durability.
Indoor Soccer Balls
Indoor soccer balls are very interesting in a sense that they actually have felt cover like a tennis ball. These have all the sizes available like other outdoor balls we have talked about so far. The primary objectives of making these balls are to ensure the accurate level of bounce, and rebound as they are played on turf, and artificial grass.
Futsal Soccer Balls
There are mainly two main differences between a futsal ball and other standard balls including the indoor soccer ball. In the case of futsal soccer ball, the bladder is filled with foam instead of air to keep the bounce low. The other difference is futsal balls are mainly size 4 balls although the weight is mostly same as other standard balls.
Beach Soccer Balls
The main responsibility of the beach soccer balls manufacturer is to ensure the softness of the cover to provide the highest level of comfort when you kick the ball barefooted.
Typically these balls are brightly colored so that you can see them clearly on the sandy beach. Not only that, they are water resistant too to protect them from the water of the ocean. Beach soccer balls are not too light and do not lose pressure. These qualities make them compatible for playing on the beach.
Street Soccer Balls
These are mainly rough and tough friendly balls. Street balls are specially made to sustain for a longer period on concrete.
Our main intention of discussing the different types of balls is to educate you so that you can buy the right product. For example using practice balls on the street will bring you no good but some awful experiences as the ball will not last long. Similarly, an indoor soccer ball is not good to play on a beach. Keep this in mind when buying, and using a ball.
Enough learning on different aspects of soccer balls? Let’s have some fun then. We are going to give you our other specific reviews on different types of soccer balls so that you can choose the right option for you applying the knowledge you have just gathered. Obviously we suggest you to buy from the ones that we reviewed above. But you can consider the following ones as well.
You can do practice with our selection of official match balls as well. The main differences of our list of practice balls and official match balls are:
- Official balls can be used for practice, competition or league plays. But the practice balls should only be used for practicing purpose.
- The price of the official balls is higher than the practice balls, which indicates the quality difference between these two types.
- Our main intention of finding the official match balls was to help you find a solution which is good in quality, and you can use it for league plays. The process was tough we must say. Not all the replica balls have good quality. That is why we were very choosy in the process. We filtered the balls not only based on our experience but also based on the experience of other users.
If you have gone through this article that we have prepared for you to choose the best soccer ball, then we are confident that, you are now able to take an educated, and wise decision to buy the top soccer ball according to your requirement. During the process of our reviews and making this buying guide, we tried to pick the best soccer balls for the money.
There are a lot of options available in the market. But before buying one, you need to ask yourself, whether you are going to use it for practice, official match, indoor playing, street playing or playing on the beach. You also need to know the actual size you need. We tried to cover all these topics including the construction of a ball so that you have the idea of the different materials that are used to make it, and which material plays what type of role in the performance of your best buddy on the ground. Hope you enjoyed reading our detail reviews and soccer ball buying guide. Now it’s your turn to take the right decision.
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