Quick Volley 101: What Is A Volleyball Made Of?
Surely, volleyball is one of the most popular sports out there, but has it ever crossed your mind, “what is a volleyball really made of?” You think about the game enough, but do you spend two thoughts on what makes the essential part of the game, aka the volleyball?
No worries if you didn’t because we plan to reveal just that. Originated in the late 1800s, the good old volleyball has seen more than layers of leather, cheesecloth, and bicycle tires! Even the types of games have shifted and made way for an indoor volley, beach volley, and professional volley. But the zeal for the game is just as it used to be.
A Quick Lesson on History:
The volleyball William Morgan thought of to be used in his introductory volley game in 1895 could not deliver high-performance. The fix? The settings needed to be changed in order to fit his net and ball game better. It needed to be something that would remain mid-air for long, would be light but not too light to fly away in windy weather, and it had to beat air resistance when thrown as an ace.
Keeping these 3 in mind, they started with basketball bladders made into volleyball. But they were too light. Added weight again made it too heavy. So Morgan took it to Spalding and Brothers to have it customized. They created a tri-layer ball with latex bladder, cheesecloth imitation, and leather. This design was excellent in performance and the best volleyball which is continued to be used until 2008, which saw the changes in the outer panel, giving players a better grip and throwing accuracy.
There have been little changes in ball construction and formation. However, one significant difference is that previously the leather outer shell was stitched and seen so, which changed to the new design of panels, making it easier to add logos, change colors, and increase palm contact. The materials used in the 3 different parts of a ball are:
- The rubber core or bladder, which is lightweight and allows the ball to fly.
- An outer shell made of high-quality genuine, or synthetic leather that secures and smoothens the surface.
- The 18 exterior panels of the same material to streamline the entire thing.
Indoor vs. Beach Ball
Owing to the elements of the environment, indoor volleyball is different from outdoor volleyball.
The indoor setting has versions for both youths and adults. The Youth ball has to meet the 9.2-9.9 ounces weight mark and the 25-26 cm diameter mark. In contrast, the Adult volleyball may achieve the same weight mark but has half a centimeter more allowance in the diameters—even the slightest difference matters, especially when it comes to PSI. The Youth balls have a PSI of 4.3, whereas Adult volleyball may have it to 4.6. Since palming the ball and forcefully throwing it need to be assured, a lower PSI helps the youth achieve that.
Again, the beach setting has to take into consideration the sand and the sun. Keeping the size and weight constant, the PSI here is reduced to 2.5-3.2 to let the players accommodate better.
Many include the entire volleyball equipment of pads and shoes other than the ball when talking about volleyball. Volleyballs are round balls of synthetic leather, featuring 18 panels distributed among 6 identical sections.
Tire material, cheesecloth material, and leather.
A game where 2 teams of 6 members each throw a ball across a network such that the opponent can’t return the throw and thereby win points.
After 2008, volleyball was made of the existing material, with a 25-27 inches diameter and 9.2-9.9 ounces for indoor and outdoor games.
Squish by Mikasa.
Conclusion of what is a volleyball made of:
So you have probably learned a lot by now other than only what volleyballs are made of! The history was added to help you understand how the people then created a design using materials that remained nearly unchanged for a century. This continuation ties us, players, now with elements of the past and only makes the game dearer and hopefully more fun!
You can also read our another article about volleyball libero.