Before your little one can think about joining a pee-wee soccer team, they first need to master some basic motor skills...like running and kicking! For a new walker, the concept of pulling their leg back to kick forward is not only foreign but may result with them landing on their little tush on the ground more often than not. The Daball Toddler Soft soccer ball provides your child with a fun incentive to practice these important gross-motor skill-building exercises. Did we mention the cute animal faces? Available in zebra, giraffe, owl, fox, and polar bear styles, these balls are sure to bring delight to any playing time! Despite their cutesy appearance, this ball is built to last, featuring a TPU material exterior, the same type of cover used by junior and professional soccer leagues. This extra-durable substance known as Thermoplastic Polyurethane, or TPU, is a rubber-like plastic that is extremely flexible and smooth to the touch but can also resist scratching and will keep your ball looking newer, longer.

This 12-oz. ball works for players between 8 and 12 years old and has a circumference of 26 inches, larger than a size 3 and smaller than the size 5. This age group tends to play on a field of about 30 to 50 yards, writes Deborah W. Crisfield in "The Everything Kids' Soccer Book," with a goal size of around 6 feet high and 18 feet long. Again, the scale for the U12s falls between that of the U8s and that of the older age brackets for the No. 4 ball and the game as a whole. Some leagues may limit the No. 4 ball to U10s instead of U12s, so check league rules before making a purchase. 


As always with Nike balls, the Merlin has an excellent feel, particularly when passing. The ball is also great for shooting due to Nike’s 4-panel construction, 360-degree sweet spot technology and the soft polyurethane outer material. It won’t deviate too much in the air due to the thermally-bonded pentagonal panel layout, so it’s perfect for training as well as games.
The type of soccer cleats or indoor shoes needed depends on what kind of field your child’s team will be practicing and play on. Have your child try on Firm Ground cleats with hard rubber or plastic studs if playing on a pitch made of natural grass or on well-worn artificial turf. Look for Artificial Turf shoes with a super low profile and an outsole evenly covered all-over in small rubber studs for the best traction on an indoor or newer outdoor turf surface.

This ball truly lives up to its name as a “glider,” having a stable flight path when shot and a nice feel when passed. The surface is relatively grippy, which is great for goalkeepers looking to practice their catches. Because the ball isn’t as slippery as some other replicas, you can shoot it with a bit more swerve, and dribbling and skill moves are a bit easier.
When any object goes through the air, a thin cushion of air wraps around it that stays relatively still. This boundary layer is why you get dust trapped on your ceiling fan. At slower speeds, the air around a soccer ball moves smoothly over the surface and separates off the sides of the ball at its widest points. Imagine a ball moving from right to left across a clock, Goff explains, so traveling from the 3 to the 9. With laminar flow, the air flows over the surface and then flows off at the 12 and 6, which creates more drag in the air. Drag slows the ball down faster. At higher speeds, the air moves turbulently across the ball’s surface and peels off at the 2 and 4. The wind effectively wraps around the back. This turbulent flow has less drag, which means the ball keeps moving at high speed for longer.
Outfitting a team? 1soccerstore.com also offers a variety of soccer ball packs for teams in multiple quantities so your team can train like the professionals and be ready to hit the pitch on game day. We offer a variety of packages for teams with quantity discount pricing and various soccer ball models to fit the budget and needs of your team. We offer the largest selection of soccer balls including adidas soccer balls and Nike soccer balls, as well as a variety of Sala balls for soccer training.
In the end, the winner was fairly clear to us. Amongst all of these soccer balls, it appears that the best in this case, was the last one that we looked at Adidas MLS Top Glider Soccer Ball. When comparing all of the products side by side it just appears that in terms of design, gameplay, and durability that this one stood out amongst the rest. It has a ton of great reviews and positive customer feedback, so it appears that the vast majority of soccer players and customers were really happy with this ball.
In terms of durability, you can’t really go past Select. The polyurethane cover on the Numero 10 is tough enough to withstand dog bites and general wear and tear, but still feels nice and soft when kicked. Although this ball is a bit more expensive than other replicas, it comes with a two-year warranty for peace of mind when buying. It also retains its bounce very well over the years – perfect for practicing volleys and clearances.
Although the length of kick may end up being a little shorter, the changes make the Telstar 18 more balanced, says Alam. On other balls, Alam and his team have found that there is a difference in how the ball flies based on where it’s kicked in relation to the seams. His tests have found that the Telstar 18 ball doesn’t have as much variation. The total length of seam of the Telstar 18 is 14.1 feet, 3.28 feet more than on the Brazuca. With the longer seam, and more symmetric panels, no matter how the ball is turned there is the same amount of seam exposed. “The other two balls were not like that, they were significantly different,” he says.
One of the main reasons but not the only reason to select this ball for reviewing is the great mission of the company. If you buy one ball, they will donate one ball to the kids of developing countries against your purchase. So, this is a “Buy One, Give One” charity model, and of course, it is a good mission where you can also contribute by buying one.
Despite the similarities with the Brazuca, the few differences between this ball and what players have gotten used to over the last four years will have an impact on play, says Firoz Alam, an aerodynamics engineer at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Australia, who has also performed wind tunnel tests on the Telstar 18. “When the player is making a short pass, they have to push a little harder, because at less then 60 kilometers per hour [or 37 miles per hour]it has more flight resistance than the Brazuca,” says Alam. The mid-range passes and corner kicks that gave the Jabulani so much trouble have been resolved. Compared to the Brazuca, the Telstar 18 is also more aerodynamically efficient in the 40-50 mile an hour range, so Alam says players will actually have to kick a little softer or they’re likely to overshoot. Over 55 miles an hour the two balls will feel very similar.
This can be used as a great option for goalkeeper training as well. Why? Look, you can hardly see the lines on this ball, hence you won’t be able to guess the direction by only seeing the spin of the ball. That means as a goalkeeper you will have to give full concentration to detect the direction of the sliding balls. This is obviously helpful if you are a goalkeeper, and looking for a sliding challenge.

Built for durability, recreation balls are made of soft synthetic materials for play on nearly any field. Typically, these balls are slightly heavier for beginner’s slower play, yet, competitors of all skill levels use these balls for practice and recreation on hard turf fields due to their resilience. Machine-stitching is the most stand-out visual difference between match balls and training balls and it offers a consistent touch for any player.
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