Our next soccer ball on the list is the DribbleUp Smart Soccer Ball. This ball is the second (and only other) “smart” ball on our list. Like the Adidas brand ball, this DribbleUp ball is designed for use with a smart device and application for training. There are a lot of features to love about this ball; however, it’s more expensive than the Adidas alternative.
Another type of soccer ball that some players may find to be useful is the indoor soccer ball. Indoor balls are designed to have less bounce and rebound to them, making it possible to control the ball on a tighter court or field. The cover of an indoor ball is also the strongest of any category, so it can withstand play on turn, hard court surfaces, and impacts with walls.
Trendy names, fancy designs, and higher prices don't necessarily mean some soccer balls are better than others. Don't fall for advertising hype. A moderately-priced soccer ball might perform and hold up just as well as the one that costs three times as much. With today's advanced technologies and materials replacing good old-fashioned leather, there are many soft and durable, lightweight synthetic soccer balls that may just as well suite you, in fact leather soccer balls are no long the norm since they tend to absorb moisture. There are also things you can do to extend the life of your new soccer ball, such as storing it correctly, cleaning it, and using it properly. But the mark of a truly sweet soccer ball comes down to feel and performance, which is highly individual.
Besides just its sleek exterior, the Adidas Starlancer is crafted with longevity in mind by the nylon being wound internally and assembled through machine stitching to provide it with an extra level of strength. The exterior is made of TPU material, which is ideal for resisting cuts and scrapes. The bladder which holds the air is Butyl, which works wonders in keeping the shape of the ball perfect at all times.
By no means is this type of ball similar to a typical soccer ball. For starters, instead of air, its bladder is filled with foam. In this case, the ball has less bounce and is heavier in order to facilitate its purpose; meant to be used on a hard surface indoors. This size 4 ball may also have suede castings which help to stabilize the ball on a slippery floor.
Much like PU or TPU for soccer ball casings, rubber is considered the best of both worlds for soccer ball bladders when it comes to striking a balance between responsiveness and air retention. Oddly enough, this balance does not actually inspire a greater adoption by either manufacturers or players, and as such, soccer balls with rubber bladders are less popular.
A soccer ball can look awesome, but if it lacks good response you're never going to fall in love with it. Your game really comes down to how well your ball performs. One trick you can do in the store to test a ball's performance is to give it a spin in the air. A well-balanced ball should spin smoothly. That will mean smooth sailing on the field. If you can, try it out. Try several of them until you find the one that feels just right.
Bend-It is particularly proud of how this ball helps you perfect the Knuckleball movement. Now, I didn’t know much about this particular soccer move but it’s a skill worth acquiring! If you hit the ball just right for a Knuckleball kick, your ball will head on a (seemingly unpredictable) zigzag pattern, making it harder to block by the goalie. The Bend-It ball uses their VPM technology to help users perfect this movement during their training.
The most commonly used materials for casing are PolyUrethane(PU) and PolyVinyl Carbonate (PVC), synthetic leather or a combination of PU and PVC. You can distinguish the type of casing used by touch. Balls that uses PVC usually have a hard exterior but are cheap and durable. PU cased balls are softer to the touch, high in quality and more responsive than PVC balls. Synthetic leather balls offer increased control hence ideal for professional matches or high-level playing. You will also notice a glossy finish on all soccer balls. This comes in handy in minimizing scuffing and water damage to the balls.
As an avid soccer player and coach, I know it is important to have a suitable ball. First off, this ball arrived fully inflated, which is always a plus. This way I don't have to run around trying to find a pump and needle in order to inflate it. My toddler immediately started kicking it around the house once I was able to get it out of the package! I also love the feel of this ball. It is easy to grip and allows for easy ball handling. The colors are perfect, too. It is a little boring to play with a ball whose colors are dull or faded. The contrast between the blue and electric yellow is perfect. The colors make the ball easy to see.
Crafted by Adidas, the Telstar 18 is the official ball of the FIFA World Cup. Drawing inspiration from the company's first World Cup match ball, which debuted at the 1970 tournament in Mexico, the new ball reimagines the 12 black panels on an otherwise white design. Fun fact: the iconic original black and white ball was made that way to be more visible for black-and-white TV viewers, and it was dubbed the "star of television."