Basketball Gear Essentials

With the right basketball gear, you'll enjoy the game more and take your play to the next level. This article outlines the basketball gear essentials you’ll need to have fun and play your best.

Basketball Gear 101

Playing basketball is great fun and, especially at more advanced levels, an excellent way to burn calories and improve your fitness. You don't need a lot of gear to play, but there are some essential items every player should have. The main things you need are a basketball and good pair of basketball shoes. A hoop and backboard in your yard will allow you to put in additional practice time to improve your skills, and basketball-style shorts and tops provide the flexible fit needed for running and jumping. You should also consider basketball accessories such as headbands, wristbands, and shooting sleeves to soak up excess perspiration and help you focus on your game.

Types of Basketball Gear


Hoops and Backboards

Whether you're on a mission to perfect your jump shot or you just like to scrimmage with friends, there's nothing like having a basketball hoop and backboard in your yard. You can buy each item separately or buy a hoop-and-backboard combo unit. Simply follow the manufacture guidelines for installation and let the fun begin. Some hoops and backboards are sturdier than others, so be sure to get one that suits your style of play. 

Basketball Systems

If you don't have a suitable spot to hang a backboard, you should consider buying a basketball system. These convenient combo units provide not just a hoop and backboard but also an adjustable pole. Set the net low to the ground when your kids are young and increase the height as they grow (or when you hit the court yourself). Some basketball systems are designed for permanent installation in a concrete base. Others are portable, so you can move them around your yard or driveway. You can also bring the court indoors with an arcade basketball system.


Basketballs come in a range of sizes, but the standard pro ball is 74.93 to 75.88 cm in circumference. Leather basketballs offer the best grip and don’t require breaking in, but they're designed for indoor use only. Synthetic balls feel like leather and can be used both indoors and out. Finally, rubber balls are ideal for outdoor play and are an inexpensive option for beginners. 

Basketball Shoes

The right pair of basketball shoes can help to improve your game on the court, and can add a touch of style to your wardrobe too. A key feature of basketball shoes is their non-marking outsoles, so you’ll be able to wear them on any gym floor. Also, the shoe bottom is specially designed to absorb shock. That means whether you’re leaping for a rebound or to win the ball in a jump-off, your knees and ankles won’t take a hit when you land. 

Basketball Apparel

Kids love to wear jerseys from their favourite teams and players, but basketball apparel is about more than just team spirit or style — it's about performance and safety, too. Loose-fitting basketball shorts and tops provide freer motion, allowing players to make more agile moves. Also, many brands of basketball apparel use fabrics that wick sweat away from the skin. This helps players stay cool and comfortable in a hot gym or on a sun-baked court in the park.

Basketball Accessories

There are a variety of accessories available to improve on-court performance. Wristbands and headbands, for example, are essential for absorbing sweat, so players are better able to maintain ball control. A shooting sleeve resembles a wristband but is worn over the elbow. It helps keep the elbow straight when shooting. If you have a home hoop and backboard, you could add hoop lights to play at night. You could also install basketball pole pads to help protect players from injury as they drive the net. And, of course, you'll need a basketball pump to keep your basketball in good playing condition. 
This article is intended as general information. Always be sure to read and follow the label(s)/instruction(s) that accompany your product(s). Walmart will not be responsible for any injury or damage caused by this activity.



Store details