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Before reading this I thought a soccer ball was a soccer ball I had no idea there were so many different types for different things. I found this information very useful on where to start with buying a soccer ball for my 5 1/2 year old son who has just joined his first soccer team and is showing great interest in learning new tricks and skills. What would be your best recommendation for him? Thanks
This is a decision being made by a league operator or manager of some sort, this section is important for you.  For the individual, there isn’t much of a determination here.  If you want something really nice like the pros, go premium.  But if not, then you probably will just want to go with a training ball.  But for people equipping their teams with materials, this is a decision that needs to be taken seriously.  I would suggest that recreational leagues stick with training match balls, even for matches.  The number of kicks that the ball will get and the improper technique will cause headaches for you if you decide to buy premium balls.  For high schools, I suggest just regular match balls as many are still learning the basics of the game and many teams simply play “kickball” at that age.  For college teams, semi-pros, serious travel clubs, and of course, professional teams, I suggest premium match balls for play!

The cheaper balls only have two polyester layers on their lining. Soccer ball bladders can be made from two different kinds of materials. They can either be latex or butyl. A soccer ball bladder is a component of a soccer ball and it is tasked in containing the air that is within the ball. It also contributes to its shape and the ball’s receptiveness on the field.

If you've ever noticed, a traditional soccer ball resembles a geodesic dome building. Such as the one designed by architect, Richard Buckminster Fuller. Thus the ball became called the Buckminster Ball. Or more simply, the "Buckeyball". The design is characterized by a pattern of twenty hexagon pieces, and twelve pentagon pieces, fitted together to create a perfect sphere. The soccer ball has undergone many design changes of various-shaped panels stitched together. But until the geodesic dome-like ball, it was never quite round enough to perform right. Manufacturers settled upon the modern thirty-two panel design, which enables the ball to roll and spin more evenly and smoothly. Which is probably why it's the most popular competition soccer ball on the market today. The Buckminister-style soccer ball was first sold in the 1950s, and debuted in the 1970 World Cup tournament.
This ball has seen a lot of use since Christmas, and while that's not a good indication of how long the batteries and lights will last, my kids have been having a blast with it at night. This ball isn't like a normal soccer ball, it's more of a smooth rubber, so it won't have the same feel as a normal ball. It feels heavier to me too, but I didn't confirm that on the scale. Once or twice the ball turned off in use, but came back on after a minute. I recommend this ball as an outdoor nighttime novelty ball, certainly not a competition ball. And the 5-star rating is directly from my 8-year-old son. His words, "I love it!"
Why do I always have to pump up even expensive balls? Many balls use bladders made out of latex. Natural Latex Rubber bladders offer the softest feel and response, but do not provide the best air retention. Micro pores slowly let air escape. Balls with natural rubber bladders need to be re-inflated more often than balls with butyl bladders. Even after one or two days, the latex bladder will leak enough air so that you will have to inflate the ball back to recommended pressure. Some balls use carbon-latex bladders in which the carbon powder helps to close the micro pores. Soccer balls with carbon latex bladders usually increase air retention to approximately one week. Of course, check the ball for punctures that may cause the air to leak out.
Everything an inexpensive, real soccer ball should be. This Wilson was significantly better-constructed, heavier and more durable than I expected it to be. Every purchase, quality-wise, must be weighed against price. And for less than $10, this sucker will last you a LONG time. I bought it for my 2-year-old. This will be the size ball he uses until he's 8 or so. Assuming he wants to play soccer. Oh dear lord, please have him want to play soccer. Come on. I need this!

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Footballs have gone through a dramatic change over time. During medieval times balls were normally made from an outer shell of leather filled with cork shavings.[4] Another method of creating a ball was using animal bladders for the inside of the ball making it inflatable. However, these two styles of creating footballs made it easy for the ball to puncture and were inadequate for kicking. It was not until the 19th century that footballs developed into what a football looks like today.
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."
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