What Size Basketball For 9 Year Old?

Morgan Wolf

Updated on:

Size Basketball For 9 Year Old

As a parent or guardian, you want to ensure that your child has the right equipment to enjoy and excel in their chosen sport. 

When it comes to basketball, choosing the correct size of basketball is essential for a 9-year-old player. 

In this article, we will delve into the factors to consider when buying a basketball for kids, provide a basketball size recommendation chart according to players’ age, and much more. 

What Size Basketball Should I Buy for a 9-year-old?

When selecting the right basketball size for a 9-year-old, it is crucial to consider their age, skill level, physical abilities, and comfort. Generally, the recommended basketball sizes for 9-year-olds are size 5 or size 6. Let’s explore the characteristics and suitability of each size in more detail.

Size 5 basketballs are slightly smaller and lighter compared to size 6 basketballs. These features make them more manageable for younger players, allowing them to have better control over the ball. 

The reduced size and weight facilitate easier handling, dribbling, and shooting for 9-year-olds who may still be developing their coordination and strength. Size 5 basketballs are often used in youth leagues and training programs, catering to the specific needs of younger players.

On the other hand, size 6 basketballs are closer to the regulation size used in adult games. They are slightly larger and heavier than size 5 basketballs. Size 6 basketballs are suitable for 9-year-olds who have more advanced skills and physical abilities. 

If your child has been playing basketball for a while, has developed good hand-eye coordination, and demonstrates the strength and control required to handle a slightly larger ball, they may benefit from using a size 6 basketball. 

It can help them adjust to the standard size used in higher-level play and prepare them for future challenges.

How to Choose the Right Size of Basketball for Kids?

Choose the Right Size of Basketball for Kids

When it comes to choosing the right size of basketball for a 9-year-old, several factors should be taken into consideration. 

By evaluating the child’s hand size, strength, and skill level, you can make an informed decision that enhances their basketball experience. 

Here are some key aspects to consider:

Age and Skill Level

The age and skill level of the child plays a significant role in determining the appropriate basketball size. Younger children may struggle to handle larger basketballs, while older kids with more advanced skills might benefit from using a slightly bigger ball.

Hand Size and Grip

Consider the child’s hand size and grip strength. A basketball that is too large can be challenging for a child to control, affecting their dribbling, shooting, and overall handling of the ball. 

On the other hand, a ball that is too small may not provide a secure grip. Look for a size that allows the child to comfortably hold the ball while maintaining control.

Strength and Physical Abilities

Take into account the child’s strength and physical abilities. A larger basketball requires more strength to shoot and control, while a smaller one may not provide enough resistance for proper technique development. 

Balance the size with the child’s capabilities to ensure an appropriate challenge without overwhelming them.

Basketball Sizes

Basketballs come in various sizes, ranging from size 3 to size 7. Size 3 is the smallest, designed for young children, while size 7 is the regulation size for adult games. 

For 9-year-olds, the recommended basketball sizes are typically size 5 or size 6. However, keep in mind that individual variations exist, and some children may find one size more comfortable than the other.

Assessing Your Child’s Needs

To determine the best basketball size for your 9-year-old, it’s crucial to assess their specific needs. 

Consider their hand size by observing how well they can grip different-sized balls. Pay attention to their control and comfort level while handling various sizes. 

Additionally, consult with their basketball coach or trainers, who can offer valuable insights based on their observed skill level and progress.

By evaluating all these factors, you can select a basketball size that matches your child’s physical abilities, skill level, and comfort, setting them up for success on the court.

Things to Consider While Buying the Right Basketball for Kids

Things to Consider While Buying the Right Basketball for Kids

By considering the following factors and taking the time to find the right basketball for your child, you can ensure they have a positive experience while playing the game and maximize their potential for skill development.

Age and Skill Level

When purchasing a basketball for a child, it is essential to consider their age and skill level. Younger children may find it easier to handle a smaller-sized ball, while older and more skilled players can transition to a larger size. 

Choosing the appropriate size based on age and skill level will help in developing proper technique and control.

Hand Size and Grip

The basketball should be comfortable to grip for the child. Consider their hand size and ensure that the ball is appropriate for their hand size. 

A ball that is too large or too small may hinder their ability to control the ball effectively, impacting their shooting and dribbling skills.


Finding the right weight for the basketball is crucial. A ball that is too heavy can make it challenging for a child to shoot accurately, while a ball that is too light may not provide enough resistance for proper control. 

Look for a basketball that strikes a balance, allowing the child to have control and accuracy in their shots.

Material and Durability

The material and durability of the basketball play a significant role in its performance and longevity. Look for basketballs made of high-quality materials that can withstand the rigors of both indoor and outdoor play. 

Synthetic leather or composite leather basketballs are commonly used and offer durability and good grip.

Brand and Reviews

Consider reputable brands when purchasing a basketball for kids. Trusted brands often have a reputation for producing high-quality products that are designed to meet the specific needs of young players. 

Reading customer reviews can provide valuable insights into the performance, durability, and overall satisfaction with a particular brand or model.

Basketball Size Recommendation Chart According to Players’ Age

Below is a chart indicating the recommended basketball sizes according to players’ age.

Age RangeBasketball Size
5-8 yearsSize 4
9-11 yearsSize 5 or 6
12 years +Size 7


What is the difference between a size 5 and a size 6 basketball?

Size 5 basketballs are smaller and lighter than size 6 basketballs, making them more suitable for younger children. Size 6 basketballs are closer to the regulation size used by older players.

Can a 9-year-old play with a size 7 basketball?

While it’s not recommended, a 9-year-old with advanced skills and physical abilities may be able to handle a size 7 basketball. However, it is generally better to start with a smaller size to develop proper techniques and control.

Can I use a size 5 basketball for indoor and outdoor play?

Yes, size 5 basketballs can be used for both indoor and outdoor play. However, ensure that the basketball has appropriate durability and is designed for outdoor use if you plan to play predominantly outside.

Should I buy a branded basketball or a generic one?

Opting for a branded basketball can provide better quality, durability, and performance. Trusted brands often invest in research and development to produce high-quality products that can enhance your child’s playing experience.

How often should I replace a basketball?

The lifespan of a basketball depends on usage, maintenance, and the quality of the ball. Generally, a basketball can last for several months to a few years. Regularly check for signs of wear and tear and replace the ball if it becomes deflated or damaged.

Bottom Line

Choosing the right size basketball for a 9-year-old is crucial for their comfort, skill development, and overall enjoyment of the game. 

By considering factors like age, skill level, hand size, and grip, you can select an appropriate basketball that promotes proper technique and control. 

Remember to invest in a high-quality ball from a reputable brand to ensure durability and optimal performance. Best of luck.

Photo of author

Morgan Wolf

Journalist with experience covering the intersection of sports with business. Demonstrated expertise in digital, video and social media content covering major sports including soccer, NBA, NFL, MLB, tennis and Olympic sports. But basketball is his passion. Specialties: expert for sports related content management LinkedIn

Leave a Comment