Volleyball has long been known as one of the most popular team sports. As a matter of fact, it ranks in the top 5 together with soccer and basketball. With an estimated 1 billion fans all over the globe, there’s no surprise as to how sought after the sport is, its merchandise, and sports apparel.
That’s why you’re here right? To find out about the best volleyball out in the market. From its humble beginnings in Massachusetts, this game is now played worldwide, competitively or not it is one of the favorite pastimes of a lot of people from all walks of life.
Best Volleyball to Enjoy the Game
1. Tachikara (Royal-White) Composite Leather Volleyball
- Built using our durable Single Unit Construction method makes it an affordable and reliable volleyball in several team colors.
- Circumference: 25.6 - 26.4 in./65.02 - 67.06 cm.
- Cover: Woven-Fiber v100 Composite
- Bladder: Butyl
- Construction: Single Unit Construction
- Dimensions: 12 x 10 x 10 inches; 1 lbs.
- Color: White
- Economical choice available in multiple colors
- Butyl bladder for durability (single construction unit)
- Features the improved woven fiber “V100” composite material
Tachikara (Royal-White) Institutional Quality Composite Leather Volleyball tops our best pick and boasts durable single unit construction for a very affordable price.
Perfect for indoor use that will surely last you for many days. Best quality volleyball that’s perfect for both those intense practice sessions and official games at the same time.
2. TACHIKARA Sensi-Tec Composite SV-5WSC Volleyball (EA)
- This ball is sold and shipped deflated.
- Sensi-Tec colored composite leather competition volleyball
- Patented Loose Bladder Construction (LBC™) method
- High performance colored composite volleyball
- Intended for play for all ages
- Dimensions: 10 x 10 x 10 inches; 9.6 oz.
- Color: Blue, black, white
- Patented loose bladder construction
- Composite leather volleyball
- Innovative material and superior construction
TACHIKARA Sensi-Tec Composite SV-5WSC Volleyball (EA) is part of the brand’s best-selling super softballs. The patented loose bladder improves ball flight, perfect for both practice games and serious competitions.
This best one is suitable for all ages. Lasts very long because of its high durability. It also is suited for all levels of play.
3. Wilson AVP Official Beach Volleyball
- ENHANCED BALL TRACKING: The vibrant color palette and Optic Flow graphics allow for better ball tracking in the dynamic and diverse environments of beach volleyball
- SUPERIOR SPIN DETECTION: VST uses color variance to allow easier spin detection, so you can read and react to where the game is going
- SIGNATURE PERFORMANCE: The OPTX uses a new visual design with the same construction as the original AVP game ball, so players can expect the same signature performance
- BUILT FOR THE BEACH: The OPTX was designed specifically for the beach game and its players, reimaging what a beach volleyball should look like
- AVP OFFICIAL: Play what the pros play and own the beach with the official ball of the AVP
- Dimensions: 9 x 9 x 9 inches; 9.6 oz.
- Color: White, yellow, black
- 18 panel; hand-sewn expert construction
- Performance elastomer bladder
- Superior construction
The Wilson AVP Official Beach Volleyball is the volleyball you’ll need for outdoor games. Also, it is widely used for beach volleyball. Its slick design is meant for it to be highly visible, especially if the sun is shining bright during outdoor games, especially on the beach.
Very durable, the deep groves are designed for wind resistance and for better hand control. Its composite leather also provides greater resistance against dirt, and moisture to maintain proper weight and feel.
The elastomer bladder results in responsiveness promoting great control and awesome power plays. Lastly, its superb construction provides shape retention for utmost reliability.
4. Wilson Graffiti Volleyball
- OFFICIAL SIZE & WEIGHT: The size & weight used at the pro level, ideal for ages 13 and up.
- GRAFITTI DESIGN: An artistic graffiti design is inspired by iconic beach volleyball locations and lifestyle.
- ENHANCED DURABILITY: 18-Panel, machine-sewn construction for durability that lasts for hours upon hours of play.
- EXTENDED AIR RETENTION: Butyl rubber bladder keeps the ball inflated for longer, reducing the need to re-inflate.
- RECREATIONAL PLAY: An exciting design and great durability make this the perfect ball for playing in the backyard, park, or beach.
- Dimensions: 7.7 x 7.7 x 4.5 inches; 9.1 oz.
- Color: Pink, blue, yellow
- 18-panel construction
- Durable machine-sewed construction
- Butyl rubber bladder
Perfect for the recreational player, the Wilson Graffiti Volleyball has a cool graphic design that is not just to make it look fancy but to make it highly visible.
It’s very durable and has that soft touch or feel every volleyball player would want to play with.
Versatile both for indoor and outdoor play.
5. Wilson Cast Away Volleyball
- CASTAWAY OFFICIAL: Replica version of the “Mr. Wilson” AVP Cast Away volleyball from the iconic film.
- OFFICIAL SIZE & WEIGHT: The size & weight used at the pro level, ideal for ages 13 and up.
- DURABLE CONSTRUCTION: Durable, 18-panel machine-sewn construction with synthetic material cover.
- STAYS INFLATED: Butyl rubber bladder for extended air retention to reduce the need to re-inflate. Bladder: Pressure Lock
- Size: 67 cm in circumference ; Weight: 270 g
- Design: Wilson the ball from the Movie Castaway (Replica)
- 18-panel construction for high durability
- Butyl rubber bladder for long period inflation
Now, who wouldn’t recognize the volleyball named Wilson from the movie Cast Away? This volleyball was voted as the best inanimate object of the year from the Critics’ Choice Awards of 2001.
Not only that, this replica is actually made of premium quality synthetic leather and its 18-panel construction is meant to make it highly durable.
Long-lasting inflation (as if the movie was not evidenced enough lol) this recreational volleyball is sure to give you a fun time on the volleyball court.
Indoor, Outdoor, and Beach Volleyball
Obviously, the game of volleyball can either be played indoors or outdoors, and naturally, the requirements would be different. We’ve discussed a little bit of it earlier in the sizes section.
Indoor locations are much more secured, much more contained, so the elements that might affect a game or the ball are much more controlled. So typically indoor volleyballs tend to be plain in color as there wouldn’t be many issues in terms of visibility.
Also, indoor volleyballs are much lighter and are molded together. What this means is that the seams of these balls are smoother and softer to touch. More playable and is more predictable when bouncing off an indoor court’s surface.
Outdoor locations can be of a wide variety, so versatility in the construction of the balls is required. There would be a lot of elements that would affect the volleyball or the game itself. Moisture, dirt, and grass depend on the location of the game.
However, outdoor volleyballs weigh more than their indoor counterpart, naturally because of the wind resistance in an outdoor setting. It should add to the control of the players. Also, the playing court usually has a larger circumference than the indoor volleyball courts.
An outdoor volleyball’s seams are stitched together to make it more durable and versatile, enough for it to be played on any of the required surfaces.
Beach volleyballs are just any outdoor volleyballs but have that distinct look because beach volleyball has been a very distinct category of the game itself. Usually determined or recognized because of its official colors (White, Blue, Yellow, Black), this type of volleyball is specifically designed for the grind of a beach that comes with sand, stones, and rain at times.
How to Get the Best Volleyball balls
As promised, here is our in depth guide on how to pick the best one for your games.
- Juniors / Training
Sizes available for a volleyball can be divided into three categories: Indoor, Outdoor, and Youth ball.
- Circumference (inches): 25.5 – 26.5
- Mass (ounces): 9.2 – 9.9
- PSI (psi): 4.3 – 4.6 psi
- Circumference (inches): 26 – 27
- Mass (ounces): 9.2 – 9.9
- PSI (psi): 4.3 – 4.3 psi
- Circumference (inches): 24 – 26
- Mass (ounces): 9.0 – 9.7
- PSI (psi): 2.5 – 3.2 psi
It’s recommended that beginners or younger players start out with a smaller-sized ball in the sense that it should be lighter and easier on the forearms when practicing intensely as the player is getting used to the game.
The younger players should then transition to Official-sized balls for the actual games. Notice how there’s a slight difference between the outdoor and indoor ball used as each situation requires different settings and also differs in the elements that the players and the ball will deal with in the course of a match.
The size of the ball is standardized to accommodate volleyball games and increase playability and enjoyment and at the same time for the best volleyball experience.
The materials used for the ball and the construction method will determine its durability, visibility, resistance against elements, and endurance (inflation) among other things that we consider of a good volleyball.
In terms of material, a volleyball can be synthetic or leather.
Synthetic volleyballs are usually cheaper than its counterpart. It’s the predominant volleyball in terms of market share as more of it is being sold for obvious reasons. Synthetic volleyballs last for a very long time and can withstand the wear and tear of so many games tremendously.
Synthetic volleyballs are usually what you’ll see on playgrounds, maybe schools, or practice grounds, as it is mostly used for recreational games, maybe even training. Obviously, the quality of the volleyball referring to the touch, softness or hardness or just the overall feel for it is most notably inferior to that of leather.
But through advancements in manufacturing, it’s slowly taking over. Some leagues even use synthetic volleyballs nowadays. It’s cheap and high in quality.
Leather volleyballs on the other hand are the go-to volleyballs in terms of official volleyball leagues or volleyball competitions on any level. It is preferred because of its overall feel and quality.
Also very durable, leather volleyballs cost more but are just considered the best in terms of quality. It comes in different types of leather and each will give you a slightly different configuration.
A volleyball can also be made of rubber, these are the volleyballs that are recreational and are only meant for fun. These are generally cheap and come in fun designs, of course, they would inflate faster and are just generally poorer in terms of quality.
The construction of a volleyball would generally determine its durability, we’ll discuss some ways on how your volleyball is made.
Your typical volleyball will have an outer layer/shell, a core or its bladder, and panels.
The outer shell is what is usually made of synthetic or leather material. Its purpose is to make sure of the ball’s smoothness which is important in games where the players should have control over the ball.
The ball’s outer shell is critical to the games as it will determine where the ball will bounce when it is either hit by a player or bounces off the floor.
The core of a volleyball or what is commonly known as its bladder is basically what wraps around the ball’s air content. The quality of the bladder determines how long the volleyball stays inflated.
The two most common volleyball bladders are Butyl and Latex. Butyl is what is commonly used and is of great quality. Used on top volleyball brands, butyl is best for all surfaces, especially hard ones. That’s why it is preferred for official competitions and it lasts for a very long time.
It has low levels of air leakage and trusted technology.
Latex on the other hand is soft and a bit bouncier and is ideal for outdoor volleyball use. If butyl lets you keep air for a long period and in constant levels, latex would seep out air slowly over time, most latex sports volleyballs needs to be inflated every time it is used just to be sure it’s up to par with the standards.
Lastly is the purpose of the volleyball. Are you looking to gift it to your kids? Is it just for that vacation trip? Or maybe you are a serious volleyball player. It all depends on what it is you are buying it for, do make sure to get the right volleyball.
Junior or Training
A junior or training volleyball is what is normally used for kids or beginners. As mentioned above, it usually differs in terms of weight. For kids or younger players, usually start on lighter softer volleyballs as it will give them the feel of playing the game and not be too intense on their forearms at the same time.
Some training volleyballs on the other hand are a lot heavier, especially for adults who tend to hit really hard at first. Also, this is beneficial as they transition to standard volleyballs won’t be that hard, on the contrary, it should be easier as you get used to the hard hits right away.
The purpose of these balls is to control, practice, and familiarity themselves with the game before playing on actual competitions with standardized volleyballs.
Lastly, are your recreational volleyballs. Usually comes in fun designs and are cheaper, these volleyballs are usually rubber. Low in quality, gets inflated fast, and is not as durable. Of course, these balls are just for playgrounds or fun volleyball games under the sun.
Notable Volleyball Brands:
Listed above are some of the most notable volleyball ball brands out in the market. Each brand boasts its own technology in manufacturing some of the most in-demand volleyballs nowadays.
Each brand also sponsors its own major volleyball competitions and produces some of the official volleyballs used in top world-level competitions.
Some competitions sponsored by these brands are the AVP beach Pro volleyball tour by Wilson. NAIA college championships by Tachikara. FIVB or the world’s governing volleyball organization by Mikasa. American Volleyball Coaches’ Association by Baden. And Molten which sponsors the NCAA championships and team USA.
The NFHS or the board that decides volleyball equipment for high school sports also approves of the brands listed above including the brand, including Martin and Champro.
How to take care of your volleyball?
Volleyball maintenance should also be observed should you not want to spend extra bucks on keeping on buying new ones every time. You should be careful with your volleyball balls, especially the leather ones.
- Never just leave your volleyball outside. A lot of the elements will destroy the ball in time and not only that, air will seep out of it due to the constant weather changes when it’s just exposed out there.
- Volleyballs should be stored dry and at room temperature when not in use.
- Use warm water and soap when washing it to clean it.
- Use conditioner (works best on leather) when the ball is too hard when new. Or maybe you can let some air out.
- Moisten needle when inserting for inflation or deflation, oftentimes a good ball is ruined because of stuck needles.
- Inflate occasionally for the volleyball experience.
What makes a great volleyball?
You’ve read our buyer’s guide and so we’re pretty sure you now have a good idea of what to look out for when getting your volleyball. Some of the best volleyball brands out there offer a variety of choices at very premium quality.
A volleyball is the central object of the sport and so its quality is of utmost priority. It determines (coupled with the skills of a player) the outcome of the game and so it must be checked constantly within the standards.
Importance of Volleyball in Life
Volleyball as with any other sport teaches a lot of valuable lessons to everyone who decides to pick it up.
The first thing it promotes is of course physical health. The rigorous training or the physical exertion it requires just to play the game will contribute a lot to your health and overall wellbeing.
You need to strengthen your upper body, arms, thighs, shoulders, abdominals, and lower legs just to be able to keep up with its demands. You also develop hand-eye coordination, reflexes, and balance as you practice day in and day out.
As they say, a healthy body promotes a healthy mind and so if you’re constantly active in sports such as volleyball, you are sure to function constantly at an above-average rate and be on top of your game or ahead of life.
And who can disregard the lessons volleyball teaches, like communication, teamwork, and camaraderie. Volleyball requires constant communication on and off the court just to execute a sound game plan and as much as possible to win the game.
These communication skills developed on the court in intense games can translate into a person’s everyday life and will promote good relationships. Also, teamwork is sometimes an underrated aspect of sports, in life, you’ll probably not make it on your own, and so volleyball teaches you to play along with others in order to succeed.
Also, the bonds you develop with your teammates should be invaluable as this might, later on, develop into something special like lifelong friendships, resulting in lasting memories that you will forever cherish.
Volleyball is a great social activity to meet new friends, meet new people, and for a person to be well adjusted in life. It’s not just a school activity or some way to get through college if you are a scholar. But it is a lifelong skill essential on working your way through your goals.
Lastly, volleyball has helped a lot of people realize their dreams through leagues and competitions. It’s a means of living for a lot of people worldwide, not only for players but for umpires, coaches, staff, and technical staff and it bridges gaps between societies and nations.
It has been a part of a global wave that through a sport we unite as one, and most of all it is a means to alleviate some groups of people from poverty.
All About Volleyball Game
We’re going to go through a rundown of some of the best practices when playing volleyball for beginners.
- Call MINE!
Communication is key inside the volleyball court, when the games are intense, presence of mind is essential. Calling MINE when the ball comes your way is the norm to make sure you or another teammate don’t go for the ball at the same time that might result in an error.
Unforced errors are the worst and while it may seem obvious at times, calling mine is still essential just to be on the safe side. It will be clear whether you got the ball or area covered and won’t result in you bumping into another teammate or no one saving the ball at all.
- Don’t get too close to the net
Make sure you don’t either land on or under the net. For obvious reasons, touching the net is a violation. Also, most injuries happen when you land on or under the net as there’s a higher probability that you’ll land under someone else’s foot.
Also, when setting the ball too close to the net, the spiker might not have the best momentum or shot available. Set the ball about a feet above the net for maximum efficiency on your team’s attacks.
- Utilize your 3 hits
You’re given 3 hits (4 if one is a block) before you need to send it over the other side. Maximizing your hits will give you enough moves for your strategy. It will also keep your opponents on the lookout and will keep them thinking.
Of course, it’s okay to be on the attack right away, if that’s your strategy, mix it up a little bit but take note that if you take your time and be more disciplined in your attacks, good things are bound to happen for you and your team within the game.
- Never catch the ball
Never catch the ball no matter what happens, as silly as it may sound this happens especially when players think that the ball is not in play due to loud noise inside arenas.
So just to be sure, never catch the ball at all times, be alert and observant throughout.
- Block a shot properly
A proper block is not only standing up and raising your arms above the net. You need to be able to counter the strength of the oncoming spike. So you need to stand tall, raise your hands way above the net as high as you can, and push your hands towards the spike to efficiently block it.
Be careful of the net as you don’t want to be called for a net violation. Also, a good blocker has great instincts and makes sure to not get baited on fakes. And also, be as fast as you can to block consistently.
- Serve efficiently
Serving the ball is very important not only is it to give your team good momentum it’s also the chance for you to start controlling the ball. Foot violations when serving are more common than you think they are.
Whether for beginners or experienced players a foot violation is definitely quite embarrassing. So be sure to watch out for that line and give yourself enough space to serve. You don’t want to give your opponents extra points (especially if it’s a match point) through unforced errors.
- Practice good defensive position
A defensive position is necessary no matter what. When the opposing team is on the attack, being ready to take on the ball is important.
Make sure to be on the defensive stance at any moment as you won’t know who or when the attack will come from. Arms bent in front for good lateral movement, legs bent forward around the waist to be always on your toes to receive whatever attack that may come your way.
Also, the best defense is a good presence of mind. Keep your focus, and be always on the alert.
Warming up is ultra-essential if you don’t want to sustain any injury. Warming up gives your body time to adjust and be ready for the rigorous match that’s about to come.
Do some stretches or movements that will utilize the body parts you’ll be using most during the game. Whether you are a reserved player or a starter it doesn’t matter, you always have to be ready when your number is called up.
We’ll discuss the rules and regulations of a volleyball match:
- Six players on the floor at any time there should be three in the front row and three in the back row
- Maximum of three hits per side, before having to get it over the opponent team
- Points are added to every service for the winning team of a rally.
- A player cannot hit the ball twice consecutively.
- A block is not considered a hit.
- The ball can be played off the net during a volley and a serve.
- A ball hitting the boundary line is considered in.
- The ball is out if it bounces off the antennae or the floor outside the court, and the net or cables outside the antennae. Also if it hit the referee stand or the pole, and the ceiling above the non-playable area.
- Any part of the player’s body may come in contact with the ball.
- You cannot catch, hold or throw the ball.
- A player is not allowed to block or attack a serve from on or inside the 10-foot line.
- After a serve, front-line players are allowed to switch positions.
- Matches are up of sets and the number depends on the level of play. 3 set matches are of 2 sets race to 25 points and a third set race to 15.
- Each set can only be won by exactly two points.
- The winner is the team to win the 2 sets. 5 set matches are 4 sets race to 25 points and fifth set race to 15.
- The team will only win by 2 unless the tournament dictates otherwise. The first to 3 sets will win.
- Outside hitter (Wing spiker, left side)
- Right side hitter (wing spiker, right side)
- Middle blocker (Middle hitter, Center)
- Defensive Specialist
Outside hitter (Wing spiker, left side)
The outside hitter is the one who carries the serve receive along with the libero. They can play both the front row and the back row. This position requires someone who’s got the great jumping ability and usually attacks from the left antennae.
The focal point of the offense but also possesses good back row skills. The outside hitter also often blocks hits with the middle blocker.
Right side hitter (wing spiker, right side)
Plays near the right antennae are always the most versatile ones on the team and can excel not only on the offense but also on defense. Also should possess great jumping skills.
They also need to be ready to set the ball and help in the middle blocking.
The setter is what you’d call the quarterback or the point guard of volleyball. They run the team’s offense. The aim is to receive the second touch to set up an attack for a spiker.
They need to have great on-court communication skills as the extension of the coach on the floor. Quick decisions and clear instructions are important if you’re the setter.
Usually, the team’s tallest athlete should be quick and strong when blocking attacks. Often also executes quick attacks with the setter.
Liberos only play on the back row and focuses on the defense. They play in different colored uniforms to identify them as they come in and out of the game due to their position.
Usually comes in for players who may not have enough skills to man the back row, defensive specialists are what the name implies really good at the defensive end for crucial receives.
China is number one in FIVB ranking in women (the USA at second) and Brazil in men (Poland at second).
China is number one in FIVB ranking in women (the USA at second) and Brazil in men (Poland at second).
Karch Kiraly was named the best volleyball player by FIVB.
Spherical balls which are either made of leather or synthetic leather are used in making volleyballs. pulvinar dapibus leo.
Volleyball has come a long way, and it is sure not stopping anytime soon. It’s taken the world by storm as it’s already starting to get really popular even in some countries where soccer or maybe basketball is considered the primary sport.
Knowing your game means knowing the right products that are available out there at your disposal. Whether you’re looking to start a career, play just for fun, like the beach or the outdoors, or maybe prepping for serious competitions in the arenas, finding the right volleyball is key.