The basketball as we know it came about in 1934, with the official size 7, or 30″, being decided as the standard basketball size for men. The core is made of rubber or sponge, or a mix of both.
There are other factors to be kept in mind while selecting a basketball. This is ensured by even pebbling and wide channels on the surface of the ball. Almost all basketball retailers offer the NBA prescribed size chart that you can consult before purchasing a basketball. Basketballs have three parts, the outer shell, the inner core, and the innermost bladder. Does it afford a good grip? The Wilson Evolution series, for example, have a Dura fiber cover which helps the fingers grip the ball tightly. But for playing outdoors on rough surfaces, rubber basketballs are the best.
It is important to remember that one brand cannot fulfill all the above criteria and one has to choose from the many varieties available in the market. Each type of basketball has its own advantages and disadvantages.
Then there is the question of price- it is important to remember that expensive brands may not always give value for money. Composite leather basketballs, on the other hand, are good for both indoor and outdoors play. The bladder is generally made of butyl rubber. Apart from these materials, basketballs for recreational games or children’s matches are made of materials as varied as plastic and foam. The smaller women’s size was officially recognized much later. The outer shell maybe made of leather, composite leather, synthetic leather, or rubber. If used outdoors, they tend to crack easily. If you choose expensive basketballs with snazzy designs, they may not be able to last the rigors of outdoor play.
Basketballs were first manufactured around 1894 by Albert G Spalding.
Size and weight are also important factors while choosing a basketball. The third most important factor is durability- does the basketball retain it’s bounce after regular use or goes flat after a few weeks play?
Leather basketballs are suitable only for indoor play.
Also, the bounce of the basketball must be smooth.