If you have played lacrosse for any amount of time, you will know that not all balls are created equal. Regardless of the type, soft or hard, or any other various form they might take, you will need them in order to practice or play the game you loving- or are beginning to try to love. Today’s buying guide will be all about the best and most popular lacrosse balls on the market in 2019. We’ll break down everything you need to know about them so that you can make the best possible purchase for your particular budget. We’ll also be reviewing the most popular balls out there toward the end of our guide. So, let’s get started!
Top Lacrosse Balls Comparison Chart
|Product||Material||Seal of Approval||Price||Where to Buy?|
|Velocity 12 Pack Lacrosse Balls||Molded Rubber||NFHS & NCAA||$$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Champion Sports Official Lacrosse Balls||NOCSAE, NCAA, NFHS & SEI||$||Check Price on Amazon|
|SWAX Lax Lacrosse Training Ball||Synthetic Leather||$$$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Champion Sports Multi Color Lacrosse Ball||Rubber||NFHS & NCAA||$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Velocity Six Pack Lacrosse Balls||Molded Rubber||NOCSAE & NCAA||$$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Champro NOCSAE Lacrosse Balls||Molded Rubber||NCAA, NFHS & NOCSAE||$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Velocity 120 Count Lacrosse Balls||Molded Rubber||NCAA, NFHS & NOCSAE||$$||Check Price on Amazon|
|CrankShooter 120 Count Lacrosse Balls||Vulcanized rubber||NOCSAE, NCAA, NFHS SEI||$$||Check Price on Amazon|
Lacrosse Balls Buying Guide
Seal of Approval
Before we get too far into our guide, we need to point out something very important. A lacrosse ball, if you are using it in a league or a tournament, has to meet certain standards of play. With them, you would get all kinds of different looks and feels when you go to different fields, making it impossible to have a clean, uniform sporting event. To prevent that and to make sure that safety is also paramount, many leagues, whether it be professional, recreational, or in high schools and middle schools, require a ball to be certified. Most certifications are easy to spot, with them appearing on the ball very clearly. But beforehand, you have to know this information before you can buy online. No one has the time to wait until they arrive to see if they are going to work for you or not. The most common types of certification are NOCSAE and NFHS. NOCSAE balls are trending toward being softer these days. This is a governing body that looks over all kinds of sports equipment, while NFHS is the federation for high school sports in the United States. These are just a couple of the groups that could be asking for certification. It’s worth noting that just because a ball is up to NOCSAE standard doesn’t make it fit for NCAA, etc, so just be on the lookout for that bit of information and don’t just assume it’s all the same. If you are just practicing you don’t need this, unless you want to make sure it’s 100% official. Otherwise, you will need them for games and tournament play.
A big chunk of the certification revolves around the size of the ball. If the ball is not up to the right size, then it will never pass inspection and be allowed for play. An official, regulation lacrosse ball is going to be between 62.7mm and 64.7mm and weigh somewhere between 140 g and 147 g. That might seem to be a lot of wiggle room, but in reality it isn’t at all. It the ball doesn’t fit between those measurements, then it does not hold up to standards. However, there are some cases where you wouldn’t want to have the regulation size. One such case is with kids who are just learning. Lacrosse balls can be heavy when you are getting used to them, and none more so than for kids is this an occurrence. So some balls will be smaller in weight size, and diameter in order to accommodate them. This is best used for a learning ball, but still does have its place.
Types of Lacrosse Balls
There are a few types of balls that can be used for lacrosse. There is the traditional rubber ball that is seen in outdoor play. This type of ball is used for games and tournaments in high schools, colleges, and at all sorts of youth level events. It is going to be right around the regulation size and weight as they should be. Alternatively, there are what are called ‘soft’ balls. These balls have the same size and weight most of the time, but they are softer and much more conducive to practicing with for younger players and for those that will be around houses and the such. Much like a futsal ball is to a soccer ball, this type of ball is going to bounce less than those that are made from the hard rubber. That way, you can cut down on the rebounds and the trouble that it could cause. Overall, it just makes it that much more safe. They don’t have the same exact feel to be fair, but they can be effective for practicing. Then there is the massage ball, which is about the size of a normal lacrosse ball but is meant to help you roll out all sorts of pain, ranging from the neck, glutes, and upper and lower back. We won’t be focusing on this very much today, but it is an option and one that might be presented when you search online, so it’s worth a mention. A lot of people have noted that this type of ball is far better for massaging due to it hardness. Tennis balls have too much give. They also make it very clear that they are much more ideal than specially advertised health balls that try to mimic them. So, this is another possible route that you could go with your lacrosse balls to increase your health off the field, too!
At its core, the lacrosse ball can be made from a few different materials. This depends on what you are going to be using it for. If you are a beginner, then you will need a different ball than an experienced player that wants a tournament like feel. You also can get what are called lacrosse ‘massage’ balls, too, so that could totally throw you off if you aren’t aware of what you are buying. The core of a lacrosse ball is almost always going to be hard. However, this rule can and should be bent slightly for newer players, who will need a softer touch in order to be able to master the game initially. Made from rubber, they are meant to bounce and be solid enough to take quite a good beating at the same time. How well the ball is made depends on this, and there are different levels of quality, so depending on where you are at, you should move in that particular direction when you look to purchase.
Just like the inside, the outside of the ball, or the shell, is just as vital to making sure that you have an awesome experience while playing. If the outside isn’t up to par, you won’t be having too much fun. This shell of the ball is going to go a long way to determining just how well the ball grips. Believe it or not, grip is a part of the equation in lacrosse, even if it might not appear that way. The softer the ball is, the more grip it will have. This makes it more possible to put spin on the ball in addition to being less likely to injure and more bouncy. Major League Lacrosse, the premier professional league in the United States, uses a very grippy ball for its players, for example. The biggest issue with this is the fact that it will harm the ball quicker if it is softer. A softer ball won’t be able to take nearly as big a beating as a normal ball with a harder, less grippy cover to it. This is just the trade off that you will have to make when deciding. If you want a premium ball, it just won’t last as long as the ones that are made for the long haul.
The colors used on the ball might not mean much to you, but they should because they convey a message about what type of game you are seeing play out. Men, for example, will use white balls in an official match. Women’s games use yellow for theirs, while orange is used for indoor play. We mentioned the MLL earlier, and they also go with an orange ball for their games in order to help visibility. This is a good idea for practice balls, since you can track them down easier should they end up going missing if they are not a normal white color. So even if you are a guy, there are legitimate reasons to pick something less than traditional for your coloring. It’s not so much about looking cool than it is saving money. This is a great tip for a beginner that might be wild with his or her play in the early days of their game.
Price has to be considered with lacrosse balls, just like with anything you could buy. First and foremost, it’s worth pointing out that the better the ball gets the more expensive it will be. This is just a fact of life that you have to accept, and it translates over to the game of lacrosse. This, though, doesn’t necessarily mean the ball will last longer if you pay more. There is a good chance it will, but ultra premium balls are considered to be premium not based on durability so much as their grip level. To get the grip, you have to lessen the life of the ball. You can get a mix of the two, or you can get one or the other but it does change the price point. Another thing to keep in mind is that it’s always going to be cheaper to buy balls in multiples. By buying two or more, you will get a deal on each ball. While it’s not required to have more than one for personal use, it sure would come in handy to help you out so you can just keep on practicing instead of hunting down the one you have. You can find them in all kinds of bundles, but the general rule of thumb is that the bigger the case, or bag, the balls is, the better the deal you will get. There is really no better way to go if you are coaching a team or running a league than to do this, and it’s also a good idea for those that just want to spend a lot more time practicing. Plus, you never know when your ball might get scuffed up and you need to make a change.
If you have ever bought something and had it come right out of the box smelling bad, you will be a little wary. Unfortunately, there are some of those issues residing around lacrosse balls. It just depends on the brand and the materials they have used for them. This smell can be overpowering to many and can cause them to throw the balls out long before they have gone bad. If you are worried about this, don’t bring them inside right away. Instead, let them sit outside for a while away from the packaging. This helps with products like gym flooring that has that chemical sort of smell, and it could possibly save you the trouble here without having to resort to sending your balls back. Sure, it might be annoying to not be able to use them right away, but it’s something that can help.
Indoor vs Outdoor Lacrosse
If you are going to be playing indoors, or practicing inside, then you will have to take some special precautions. We have mentioned the softer balls before, and this is where that comes into play in a very big way. An soft ball is going to be your answer to make sure you can play in the gym or garage safely. Without one, you will have a ton of issues when you do miss the target. Let’s face it. Eventually that is going to happen and when you do, the ball will go careening into something and then all over the place. With a hard ball that happens, with a soft one it doesn’t. As far as outdoor lacrosse goes, though, the rubbery normal kind of ball is going to be king. A soft ball will not bounce properly, so that can make a large impact on the overall feel of the game. With that said, a softer ball could do wonders in crowded places since it won’t bounce and rebound into your stuff (or others!).
Let’s Look At The Top 9 Lacrosse Balls of 2019 Reviews!
Velocity 12 Pack Lacrosse Balls
With a wide array of colors to pick from and a reasonable price, you get a very good pack of balls here that should last an individual quite a long time while saving you a lot of time picking them up constantly. These balls from Velocity are just what you would expect them to be for practice: good, durable balls that also meet NOCSAE and NCAA standards. This means your practices will translate well to actual games, unlike many lesser items out on the market currently that try to claim to be just as good to practice with. No matter the age or level of play, you can get a lot of use out of them since they are such a good general ball to make use of. Because they don’t use recycle materials, these balls tend to retain their grip much longer than others do, meaning you don’t have to worry about the way they feel changing over suddenly. The biggest issue facing these balls is the chemical smell that accompanies them when you purchase them. This smell is just too hard for some to overcome, so be prepared to deal with the challenge accordingly or you will be left disappointed.
- Very durable
- Keeps up the grip
- Official balls that are NOCSAE approved
- Smell is off putting
Champion Sports Official Lacrosse Balls
With this ball from Champion Sports, you get a ton of different options. On top of having nine different colors to pick from to help you either stand out from the crowd or increase your visibility, you also can pick between buying just one ball, two, three, six, or twelve. This also comes in with very affordable prices no matter what you pick, but just keep in mind that the combinations do make the prices fluctuate a bit. The balls, like the Velocity ones, are NOCSAE approved and can be used in NCAA and NFHS games. They will thus help you when you are practicing at home to get a better feel for what the game will be like without spending a ton of money. You also will get a lot of durability out of these balls since is their strong makeup and construction. They’ve also done quite a good number for a lot of people for massages, too, so if you get tight after playing that’s always open to you. Also similar to the Velocity balls above, some have reported a smell to these that was too much for them. So be vigilant and have a plan or be prepared to just suck it up if you go with them.
- Lots of colors to pick from
- NCAA, NOCSAE, and NFHS approved balls
- Also have a smell to them
SWAX Lax Lacrosse Training Ball
If you are in need of an either an indoor ball or a ball that you can play around the house outside with, or if you are a learner, then this is the one for you. This is the leader and originator of the soft lacrosse ball, and they are quite the tool for you if you need something that’s not going to be bouncing literally all over the yard. This ball is an ideal tool for the learning player since it will not inflict as much damage to them when hit, and it’s also going to be great as they learn how to handle their stick since they won’t be as accurate as most of their more experienced counterparts would be. In addition to all of that, these balls have a lot of really awesome colors to them that you can use to fit your personal style. Despite the way they might feel, they still have the same weight and size, so you won’t be practicing with something that is totally off putting to you. The thing to keep in mind with them is that they do sell for more individually than most ‘normal’ lacrosse balls, but this could be expected due to their altered purpose.
- Great for learning
- Same weight and size
- Awesome looks that fit you
- A little expensive compared to others
Champion Sports Multi Color Lacrosse Ball
If you just need a single ball and want it to look super snazzy, then this could be just the one for you. This multi colored ball is of the highest quality and yet is still quite affordable at the exact same time. It looks great with its design that sticks out from others you’ll find, while still giving you the same qualities you want and deserve in a ball. It’s approved for use in NCAA and NFHS play, making it ideal to practice and play with if you so desire. Just keep in mind that visibility won’t be the all-time greatest, so individual practice might be your best bet with it. In addition to that, there is an issue with the smell of it, which like the other Champion offering has that kind of chemical tinge to it. It’s also done a whale of a job for people who needed to work out sore muscles, too, so there’s that!
- Very cool colors
- Approved for official play
- Very sturdy
- Not best of visibility
- Has that smell
Velocity Six Pack Lacrosse Balls
If you are on the search for a few quality balls for yourself or the team, then this half dozen set from Velocity could be right up your alley. With a number of colors choices, you can make sure that you either match your team’s colors or stand out with the most visibility possible. These balls are made for play at all levels, whether it’s a beginner in elementary school or an experienced veteran in the NCAA. They are official size and weight, ready to go as far as NOCSAE is concerned, leading to you being able to use them to improve your accuracy during practice so that games become a breeze. They’ve also been put to the test against dogs, and they have come out the other side with incredible durability, which has to be applauded. Once again, a few have had issues with the smell, so be prepared for that eventuality.
- Awesome price
- Match your teams’ colors
- Very durable
- Smell can be too much
Champro NOCSAE Lacrosse Balls
Coming in multi pack, Champro brings you a high quality ball that will afford you the chance to no longer worry about whether or not you are playing with an approve ball. These NOCSAE approved balls are sold in three, six, and 12 packs, and are all official size and weight. They come in four colors, each of which are bright and vibrant to help them standout so that you can see better while on the field. On top of all of that, the price you pay is a significant amount cheaper than what you are usually able to find at the stores locally, meaning it’s one heck of a deal to go with them. They’re very durable for a number of purposes, too, so if you want to get the dog outside for some exercise or roll your back a little bit, it will hold up well and get you to feeling much better. One of the issues, of course, has been the smell, while the other one seems to be inconsistent shipping of ordered goods.
- Nice price to pay
- Very vibrant colors are easy to spot
- Extreme durability
- Inconsistent orders
Velocity 120 Count Lacrosse Balls
The best way to get an awesome deal on anything is to buy in bulk, and that’s what this represents. Velocity, as we’ve already seen, is one of the leaders already, but they drive the price down even more here with this massive ten dozen set of balls. If you need to stock up for quite a while and want to pick from a plethora of colors, this is quite simply the only way to go. These balls are very durable, for sure, but even if you lose a few, you’ll still have plenty to call upon for a very long time should you go this route. No matter what age, you can get a ton of use out of them, so this is an ideal selection for someone that is running a league, whether the players are young or old. They are very solid balls that are approved by NOCSAE and thus official weight and size. It’s just the absolute best way to practice since you don’t have to reload very often at all! Watch out for the smell, but other than that you should be good to go.
- Long practices
- Many colors
- Ideal for all ages
CrankShooter 120 Count Lacrosse Balls
Similar to the Velocity balls come these from CrankShooter, who also want to give you a hefty amount of balls to either pass along to your teams or to practice with. These balls only come in three colors- white, yellow, and orange- so that’s one of the minor differences that separate them from the Velocity 120 pack. These balls, it must be said, claim to have NOCSAE approval, but some have reported that it does not appear on the ball. If this is the case, you won’t be allowed to play with them and you might want to measure them just to make sure they are correct before you try and practice with them. The one thing that has to be commended more than others is that they have excellent durability compared to other lacrosse balls, making this is a good call if you need something that can take quite a beating and keep on going.
- Great durability
- Good price again
- Lots of balls to practice with
- Might not be up to standard
Franklin Sports Youth Lacrosse Balls
If you’re on the prowl for a ball that a young player that is just starting his or her lacrosse journey to use, then this could be just the thing you need. Franklin is known for producing cheap sports equipment, and this continues that tradition and allows newbies to get a look in at the game. These balls are only seven inches in diameter, making them smaller than a normal ball. This makes them easier for children to control and means they don’t discouraged right off the bat when they don’t do so well. They are also less heavy and are softer than normal balls, too, helping to make sure the young player doesn’t get hurt as badly. Each pack has three colors included in it, too, which is a nice touch.
- Great for young players
- Softer to help prevent injuries
- Nice grip level
Conclusion And Final Lacrosse Balls Recommendations
Buying the perfect lacrosse ball can be a tough adventure for many out there. With an abundance of items online to choose from, you’d be tempted to think that it would be easier than ever to choose. But that’s not the case always, especially if you aren’t armed and ready with the right information at the appropriate time. After our guide today, however, you can now go out and make a much better decision on what you want and need. No matter if you are playing your first games, practicing with a softer ball, or looking to roll out that crick in your neck, a lacrosse ball can do you a world of good if it fits your specifications. You don’t have to break the bank to be like the pros, and it will show out on the field and in your bank account!