10 Best Basketballs for Kids Reviewed in 2019

Who doesn’t want to be like Michael Jordan? Encouraging your child to play basketball is a wonderful tool to get them excited about getting active. While this sport was originally created to help athlete’s workout during colder weather it still remains one of the most popular sports in the world today. When your child plays basketball they are running, jumping and enhancing some of their leg and ankle muscles while also improving their endurance. With dribbling and throwing their basketball, it helps your child develop strength in their grip and their gross motor skills. We know that your child will be shooting around the hoops with one of the highest rated basketballs on our list below!

Last Updated:
By Lyndsey Fosher:

For this update we spent a little bit more in depth in our criteria section explaining the functions of what to look for in a basketball to make it completely perfect. Any other questions you might have please be sure to check out our FAQ section as we’re sure you will find whatever answer you may need there.

Our Top 3 Picks

SKLZ Pro Mini Swish Foam Ballimg
  • SKLZ Pro Mini Swish Foam Ball
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • For Young Kids
  • Price: See Here
Mini Basketball Kids Game Ball
  • Mini Basketball Kids Game Ball
  • 4.5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Indoor/Outdoor/Pool use
  • Price: See Here
Franklin Sports Junior Basketballimg
  • Franklin Sports Junior Basketball
  • 4.3 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Polyester Winding
  • Price: See Here

Criteria Used In Evaluation of Best Basketball Toys For Kids

One of the most favorite childhood games as well as a great way for your child to get active is by playing basketball. What’s great about this activity is that children of pretty much any age can play this sport, all you need is a ball. Figuring out which basketball was the best of the best with all the options that are out there today wasn’t easy. We know that basketballs especially should be durable – meaning here that they should be able to withstand many games. They should also be lightweight and depending on the age of your child the size needs to be age appropriate.

One important thing when it comes to basketball is that you need to make sure that these balls have a good enough bounce, otherwise you’ll be playing more like soccer instead of the sport your children want to play. These balls should have a grip like a feature to them so that they’re easier for children to hold, shoot, pass, or dribble.

Durability is extremely important for any children’s toy which is why for this specific subject we paid extra close attention too. If the ball isn’t durable, it won’t stay inflated, having inflation is important because it will require your basketball for the proper bounce, dribbling, shooting and rebounding. Any kinds of tricks that your child wants to do or learn will have to require the perfect basketball. For younger children, parents are going to want to look into basketballs that are made of foam as they’re a little bit softer and a bit more vulnerable if they’re chewed on so it’s best to keep them away from any kind of animal or teething toddler.

It’s no secret that when it comes to dribbling and bouncing, bouncing is pretty much essential when it comes to the game of basketball. If the ball doesn’t bounce, your child won’t be able to learn skills such as dribbling, layups or rebounds. Having the perfect bounce is key. Each ball on our list all have been recommended by other customers and all have a good bounce making them 100% durable and excellent for your child to learn any of the tricks and skills that come with this wonderful active sport. Of course for rubber balls over time or after shipping you may need to add some extra air into them but otherwise, they’ll be good to go for your next game.

Gripping is also a key factor when it comes to basketball. Unfortunately, this factor is something that parents sometimes often forget about. Having a good grip on your basketball is important because without a good enough grip the balls slip easily, and your child may have a bit more difficulty in learning how to play the game.

The last thing we took into consideration when coming up with our list of the top ten highest rated basketballs for kids was safety. Each ball on our list is specifically designed for toddlers and children on the younger side because they are made of foam. This means that if a ball happens to hit your child during playtime, parents won’t have to worry as much of any sort of injury as the foam is softer then rubber. Foam balls are also wonderful to have for a rainy day because they’re better for your children to play with indoors as they’re not likely to break any expensive household items. These balls are also lightweight so you won’t have to worry about how heavy the basketball might be for your active child.


Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Which basketballs are best for young children?

A:  Foam balls are typically best for young children. These tend to be smaller (around 5 inches in diameter). The small size and light weight make them easier for little hands to grip and bounce. Foam balls on this list are the SKLZ Pro Mini Swish Foam Ball and the Pro Mini Basketball, Chastep, 6 Inch Foam Ball.

Q: Which basketballs are best for girls?

A: Any basketball may appeal to girls. The best guideline is to find a ball that’s suited for her hand size. A mini ball would be appropriate for a toddler, while a size 5, or “youth,” basketball would be appropriate if she is a bit older. Size 6 balls are good for girls aged 12 and older and are used by women’s college and professional teams. Some balls have extra touches that might provide extra appeal for girls. The Pro Mini Basketball, Chastep, 6 Inch Foam Ball, for example, is available in a fun blue and pink color combination. 

Q: Which basketballs are best for older children?

A: Older children will benefit from playing with “youth” balls. These balls are typically 27.5 inches in circumference, making them large enough to help children master the game, but small and light enough to be handled by growing children. Youth balls on this list include the Spalding Rookie Gear Indoor/Outdoor Composite 27.5 Youth Basketball, the Mikasa Junior Size Rubber Basketball, the light-up basketball, and the Sportime Max Hands-On basketball.

Q:  Does it come inflated?

A:  Foam basketballs don’t require inflation, so they are shipped ready to play. Rubber balls vary, but even when they are shipped “inflated,” they may require additional air for maximum bounce. It’s good practice to have an air pump, as basketballs lose air over time and require inflation for continued play.

Q: What material are the basketballs made of?

A: Basketballs are made from a variety of materials. Mini basketballs for very young children are typically made from foam to make them safe and easy to grip. Larger balls are made from rubber for grip and bounce.

Q: What size is the basketball?

A: The smallest basketballs are 5 to 6 inches in diameter and designed for toddlers and very young children. Larger basketballs come in standard sizes. The smallest size is size 1, which is 16 inches in circumference and designed for ages 2 to 4. The next size is size 3, which is 22 inches in circumference and suited for children ages 4 to 8. Size 4 balls are 25.5 inches are suitable for ages 5 to 8. Size 5 balls are 27.5 inches are suited for children ages 9 to 11. Size 6 balls are 28.5 inches and ideal for boys ages 12 to 14 and girls and women ages 12 and above. Size 7 balls are 29.5 inches and ideal for boys ages 15 and above.