questionsshould i start my 6 year old on regulation or kid…


Go with a youth size because they are made for smaller hands. You can switch to regulation size when he gets older.



Until his hands fully grow, it won't make sense to give him a full-sized ball, unless he's going to try out for the team in high school. The goal at this age is hand-eye coordination and learning the finesse of transferring movement from the hips > shoulders > arms > wrists > fingertips. This in itself is hard enough, he won't need the added difficulty of a full-sized.

You don't expect him to play on a regulation height basket at this age...


I disagree with the others. I always played with full size soccer balls and I think it made me a better player further down the line because I did not have to make the adjustment. If you spend your entire life adjusting to the size then I think they will be better later on. Don't know if this applies to basketball but I don't see why it wouldn't.


I'd go with a kid-size basketball. I assume your main goal is for him to have fun (and maybe learn some basic skills) and I suspect it will be more fun for him if he can get his hand around the ball and control it a little bit. I'm a small person; as a kid, we only used men's regulation-sized basketballs in gym, so we "wouldn't have to adjust later," and I couldn't even get the ball into my hand to try shooting. When a gym teacher finally gave me a kid's-sized ball, I was able to try dribbling and shooting, and really enjoyed it. I'll still play driveway shoot-around with friends if there's a smaller basketball available - I never would have had that experience if I'd only been allowed to handle men's regulation-sized basketballs.

And as a 7/8th-sized woman, let's just say that there was zero chance I'd end up playing regulation men's basketball when I "grew" up! Enjoyment and appreciation of basketball was far more important than reducing "adjustment" later.


Kids. A men's ball will be too big for him to control when he's dribbling and too heavy for him to shoot properly - so he will end up heaving it. It's not a significant adjustment to play with a larger ball as he grows. Hell, even now when I play basketball with friends, we tend to warm up with a women's/285 size ball and play the game immediately following with a men's ball (because we are all too irresponsible to remember to bring a ball for warmups, and the only balls kicking around the gym are women's balls)(my last parenthetical sounds dirty).


good advice thanks I got the youth size 5. I guess there is an intermediate size but I just want him to have fun for now. I really dont need to consider a 10-20 purchase the begining of a legacy I suppose do I ?


@mstislavski: The reason you move up in size in youth soccer is mainly due to weight, not necessarily circumference (except for the little tiny kids where it's both). Also, working with a smaller ball gives you better control when you get back to a full size. I regularly work out with a three and four and my ball handling is much better when I consistently use the smaller balls. When I use a five in games it's like the ball moves in slow motion and goes right where I want it to without even any effort. I've been playing for over thirty years and coaching for about the last 15 and use this method with all of my kids.

You should always start kids off with an appropriate sized ball.


I think that the youth ball was a good idea. The adult size would probably be more difficult for him to handle right now, and might frustrate him and make him not want to play anymore.