How To Inflate A Basketball With A Needle

Last Updated on November 9, 2022 by

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Can't seem to do proper passing, dribbling, or shooting even though you have practiced a lot? Most likely, the issue is not your skill but your basketball.

It could be your basketball is not correctly inflated. If the ball is not inflated decently, even a pro basketball player will struggle to show off their skills.

Inflating a basketball is simple; you can use a needle to boost the basketball yourself.

This article will elaborate on How To Inflate A Basketball With A Needle – Step By Step.

If you drop your basketball on a flat surface, the ball should bounce at most 54” if it hits the most resilient part and at least 49” if it hits the least resilient part. So a properly inflated basketball should bounce between 49-54”, not more or less than that.

How to Check If Your Basketball is Properly Inflated?

How would you know if the ball is bouncing between 49 and 54 inches? It is pretty straightforward. Go near a wall and use a tape measure to place three marks on the wall.

First mark at 6 feet, the second mark at 49 inches, and 3rd mark at 54 inches.

Hold the basketball at the first mark, which is 6 feet. If your arm is long enough, you can put your head between the second and third marks.

If your arm is not long enough, you have to drop your head to the position when the ball falls.

Now let go of the ball and let it fall straight down. At the same time, quickly duck and put your head in the position between the second and third mark. After the ball bounces off the plain surface, watch closely. Does it go high enough between the two marks you have set?

If so, then you have a perfectly inflated basketball.

If the answer is no, then you will have to inflate your basketball properly.

Don't know how to pump a basketball with a needle? Don't worry; we got you covered.

How To Inflate A Basketball With A Needle

There are many ways to inflate a basketball. But inflating with a needle is the easiest and most commonly used method. In this segment, you will know how to pump up a basketball with a needle.

Tools you need

1. Inflation Needle
2. Air pump
3. Air pressure gauge (not necessary)

Step By Step Guide:

In this segment, you will learn how to use the tools given above to inflate your basketball one step at a time.

Step 1: Connect the needle to the pump

Firstly you need a ball pump needle. Do you know how to use ball pump needle?

You have to attach or connect the ball pump needle or inflation needle to the air pump. Now, how you connect the needle depends on what kind of air pump you are using.

The air pump used for basketballs is easy to connect to an inflation needle as most of them are threaded, and you can just screw the inflation needle into the air pump.

If you use an electric air pump, it will have a latch to put in the needle. But for an electric air pump, you may need to use an industrial compressor, and we wouldn't recommend using an industrial air pump unless you have decent practical knowledge beforehand.

Another kind of air pump you can use is a bicycle pump. A bicycle pump has a latch, and you have to put the needle inside the latch and close it simply.

Step 2: Wet the needle and Insert or embed the wet needle

Forcing a dry needle into the valve of your basketball may damage the valve. To prevent the damage, we recommend wetting the needle before inserting it.

You can use water, wet paper, or even spit on the needle to make it wet. Insert or embed the wet needle slowly into the valve of your basketball. The needle should go all the way in.

insert the needle to the basketball valve

Step 3: Start pumping

In this step, you have to pump air. Now you must be wondering how to pump your basketball with a needle?

Well, if you are using a compressor or electric pump, just turn it on, and it will begin inflating the basketball.

If you use a bicycle pump or hand pump, you have to pump the air by hand.

In this step, you learned how to put air in a basketball with needle.

start pumping the basketball

Step 4: Monitor air pressure

While pumping by hand, you can feel when you should stop. To feel the ball, use one hand on the ball while using the other hand to pump air.

But using a compressor or electric pump, you may not have time to feel if the air is enough or not as it pumps air at a fast paste.

Too much air pressure can destroy your basketball. That's where the air pressure gauge comes in. 

You can use the air pressure gauge to check the air pressure.

If you don't have it, then use the ball bouncing technique described above in this article.

Monitor air pressure of Basketball

Wrap Up

There are a few methods to inflate basketball, but the technique of using a needle to inflate is the most common and easy one. We hope this guide has given you all the information you were looking for regarding inflation using a needle.

Every basketball needs inflation; it is not related to the quality of the ball you use. And the tools you need to inflate are quite cheap too.

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