It's a bird, it's a plane, no it's a Nike soccer ball? Feeling like superman is normal when having one of these balls by your feet, I mean just look at them. Is there more to a Nike soccer ball though just a pretty face is the real question. Leagues, teams and pro players can't get enough of these balls and that's why they are the most used ball for teams and players world wide.
What makes this brand of ball so special? It's a combination of things, not only the quality materials of which they're made but also the feel of the ball, the technology, the pure beauty of them of course but most importantly the top of the line materials and construction of the ball puts them over the top.
Nike has done a fantastic job in creating a ball that not only has the on field specs we all crave but the durability and look of world class soccer ball that pro's and beginners can all enjoy. Find all the advice on buying your own, researching and comparing which one is for you and some things to avoid when getting your first, second or hundredth Nike soccer ball.
Do you own a TV? Look around the world and you'll see top pro's not only being sponsored by Nike but also using their balls in training, matches and the best leagues and tournaments in the world. The EPL (English Premier League) is regarded as being the best league in the world and it is no coincidence they have the best ball provider in the world as their official match ball sponsor in Nike. The best league in the world wouldn't settle for second best when it comes to their product so having the best ball in the world to match the best league in the world only makes sense.
In case you think other wise ask a few of Nike's sponsors such as Ronaldo, Zlatan and Neymar and ask yourself if them using this brand and ball is enough justification for you? That's what I thought.
The EPL has a long history of having Nike as their official match ball sponsor all the way back to 2000 (okay that doesn't seem so long ago now that I say it out loud). As you can see Nike has changed the look, style and colours over the years but the one thing that hasn't changed is the high grade of quality the ball is made with. If you can get your hands on one of these bad boys for your personal or team training then you are in for a real treat, keepers...... not so much. Us mere mortals will play with whichever Nike ball we can but pro's train and play with these $200 plus balls every day at training, must be nice.
1. Quality Materials - You want a Nike ball that's built from the best of the best materials. Nike balls can be made in different ways with different materials so be sure to get the ball with the highest quality plastic, synthetics, stitching and panels. Pay a little bit more now and get a ball that will last.
2. The Right Feel - Get that ball on your foot and see if it has the right feel when your foot gets some touches on it. Juggle, roll and pass it around to see if you have that control you like and if the ball bounces and responds the way you want it to. The feel of the shoe isn't enough, see how the shoe connects with the ball you are about to buy, if it doesn't feel right move onto another Nike ball and give it a shot.
3. Tight Stitching - Have a look at the seams, if just by looking at them without applying any force you can see they are coming apart or there are gaps in the threading then move on to the next Nike ball. Tight stitching holds the panels of the ball together and is a great sign of a ball that can withstand months of shots, passes, tackles and everything else a ball will endure.
4. Sharp Look - Okay fashionista it's okay to want your ball to look good too. Before you choose the ball on looks alone make sure it checks off a few of the boxes to do with feel, craftsmanship and price before you fall in love with the next Mona Lisa of soccer balls. As bizarre as it may sound looking good affects the way you feel and your confidence level so go for a ball who's look gives you joy, plus you can't have an ugly ball for instagram videos right?
5. Durable Panels - The panels on the outside of the ball need to be able to take a beating so make sure they have some cushion to them but also made of quality synthetic material. The preference of how a ball may feel varies so be sure to check out the outer layer and see if the panels are to your liking, if not grab another Nike ball that has the right amount of cushioning.
1. You Get What You Pay For - A lesson in like not only just for a nike soccer ball purchase. If the price seems a little too good to be true then it probably is. Give it a good test run, feel it out and see if this ball is actually what is says or if it's a cheap copy that won't last one good shot against your mom's favourite lamp.
2. The Right Ball For the Right Surface - With all the beautiful Nike balls to choose from be sure if you're playing Futsal you get a Futsal size 4 ball, if you're under 8 get a size 3 Nike ball, 8-12 years old get an outdoor size 4 ball and if you're above 12 get yourself a size 5. Be sure you know what kind of ball you need for whatever age, surface or league you're playing in.
3. Try It Out - Always give the ball a test drive before deciding on it. Not every Nike soccer ball is made exactly the same so get it at your feet, get some juggles in and see if the ball jives with your feet. If you can wear some indoors to the store so you can get a feel for the ball with the tools you'll be using once you buy it.
4. 3 Levels - Typically when buying a new nike soccer ball there will be three price brackets for balls, two that are for training (one at about $30 a ball and one at $45) then there is a match balls that can be upwards of $150-$200 a ball. You want to try and get at least the second level ball at about $45-$60 and that way you know you are buying real quality for just a bit more.
5. It Can Look Good Too - Looks aren't the most important thing but they do play a role in buying the right ball. Maybe you want it to match your boots or your team colours or whatever else. Don't let the ball design and colour be the only thing you use to make your decision but go for a nice looking nike soccer ball once it passes the quality test.
1. Knock Offs - And boy does Nike have its fair share of knock offs. Pay attention closely to wear the ball is made and any replicas of the Nike swoosh that may look a little fishy. All over the world Nike has second rate products that sell at next to nothing so be sure you're getting a high quality ball and not the knock off ones by giving the ball a thorough inspection.
2. Funny Looking Shape - Give it the old eye test and make sure there aren't any slight warping going on with the ball. Some of these balls could have been stored in cold temperatures or crushed up against something and start to loose their shape. A warped Nike soccer ball won't do you any good so be sure to triple check that watermelon.
3. Fashion Over Function - You know this but it's worth mentioning again, we all want the good looking ball that looks like it just came off the field of an EPL match but don't let that be your only criteria. Check the way it's crafted, its weight and shape then after you've given it the thumbs up only then choose the prettiest ball at the prom.
4. Distracting Add-Ons - "Buy this ball and get a free shoe bag and pump!" Be careful of such promotions that provide additional products to sell the ball. If the ball passes all your requirements okay fine but don't be on the fence about a ball and get it just because you get some free pump needles and a foam finger with it. You are looking for a quality well made Nike soccer ball, ignore the extras.
5. Too Low of a Price - Be careful of prices that are unusually low. A lesson in life which applies here is "if something seems too good to be true, it usually is". Feel it for yourself, inspect it and even do some research online to see if this ball usually goes for about this same price or if this one feels like a scam.
These are the basic components every Nike ball is made with, although the materials, colours and style may vary from year to year this is the basic foundation. If your still curious on seeing the inside of a ball for yourself you could put a knife to an older flat ball of yours and see what all the fuss is about.
Valve - This is a small hole surrounded by a rubber material that is the air hole for pumping up or taking ball out of the air.
Lining - The lining sits between the bladder and the panels and acts as a safe barrier to protect the air that's inside the bladder.
Bladder - This is a synthetic rubber material that acts as the balloon on the most inside of the ball where the air is held, it can expand and retract based on how much air you wish to put in it.
Panel - Panels provide the cushion on the outside of the ball that you feel with every touch of the ball. Some are thicker than others and the designs and amount of panels vary from each Nike soccer ball.
Cover - The cover is the most outer layer and is what gives that smooth coating on the ball and also allows you to put designs on it such as the Nike swoosh and other things.
Nike makes soccer balls in every style, shape, colour and size you can think of so if there's a certain type of soccer ball you need, Nike will have it. If you aren't familiar with all the different types of balls for all the surfaces (grass, turf, concrete, court, sand or cement) then be sure to do your research to be certain you're getting the right nike soccer ball for the job. Here are a list of all the soccer ball sizes and types you'll ever need.
1.Outdoor/Indoor Size 5
2. Futsal Size 4
3. Outdoor Youth Size 4
4. Outdoor Youth Size 3
5. Mini Ball Size 1
6. Beach Soccer Ball