Whether you’re a pro, an amateur, or a beginner who’s just getting into volleyball, it’s impossible to play volleyball without, well, a volleyball.
Therefore, I compiled a list of the best volleyballs on the market, depending on what you need them for.
Here at Volleyball Vault, we understand that the type of the volleyball depends on your needs – there’s no reason for a beginner to invest the same amount of money as an experienced player would, and we applied this rule in our research for the best volleyballs in 2023.
Top 7 Volleyball – At A Glance
World’s Best Volleyball – Official Ball of Olympics & FIVB, Aerodynamic & Anti-Sweat Tech.
An affordable volleyball that meets industry size and weight standards, suitable for casual players.
Best for Beginners and Recreational Players
The Mikasa VQ2000 is an affordable, colorful, and durable recreational ball, ideal for beginners and casual players.
Best For Training
Perfect for regular practice, especially for beginners and children, being smaller and lighter than a match ball.
Best For Children
The lightest and smallest ball on the market, perfect and safe for children.
Best For Setters
The Mikasa MGV500 is a weighted ball used for setter training, challenging setters with its added weight.
Top 7 Best Volleyball Reviews For 2023 [Detail Review]
After extensive research and comparison, we have compiled detailed reviews of the top-rated volleyballs available in the market to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of their features, benefits, and performance.
This is the best volleyball in the world – as simple as that. It’s perfectly aerodynamic, and it uses an anti-sweat system that keeps it dry. It’s also the official ball of many competitions, including the Olympics and FIVB.
Best Overall Volleyball – Overall Winner
If you’re looking to invest into a volleyball you’ll have for years, I wholeheartedly suggest the Mikasa V200W!
This is one of the best volleyballs in the game at the moment and it was FIVB’s official game ball in 2019, as well as the official ball of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Aside from being aerodynamically perfected, which is a crucial requirement in the professional game, this ball also utilizes the anti-sweat system called Nano Balloon Silica. This always keeps the ball dry, ensuring that it doesn’t slip because of sweat.
This is as good as it gets when we’re talking about volleyballs! As you might expect it, though, this ball doesn’t come at a low price.
- Professionals and players who play volleyball regularly – there’s no better choice if you want to play with one of the best volleyballs on the market.
Not Ideal For
- Children and casual players – this ball is too big and too heavy for children, and it’s a needless investment for players who don’t play volleyball regularly!
The ideal budget volleyball, this ball follows all industry norms regarding size and weight. It’s nothing special in comparison to some high-end models, but it’s more than good enough for casual ballers!
Best Budget Volleyball
If you’re looking to get the most from a limited budget, it doesn’t get much better than Tachikara’s leather volleyball. Conforming to all industry standards, this ball is the perfect size and weight for recreational players.
It ships deflated and the pump isn’t included, so you’ll have to buy a small pump too if you don’t have one already.
- Recreational players on a budget.
Not Ideal For
- Children – a bit too heavy for small children.
Best Volleyball for Beginners and Recreational Players
If you’re new to volleyball, get used to the name Mikasa. Mikasa have been procuring volleyball equipment for amateur and professional players for almost 100 years!
Their VQ2000 Series balls, which come in an array of colors, are some of the best volleyballs for beginners, and that’s reflected in the price as well, as these balls aren’t as nearly as expensive as pro-level balls.
So, what makes VQ2000 balls so good?
These balls are built to last, using an airlock butyl bladder (which is a fancy way of saying they have a high-tech rubber bladder to keep the air in) covered in cotton for that optimal touch.
This ball is a size 5, which means it can be used in official matches.
- Anyone starting out or playing volleyball recreationally.
Not Ideal For
- Children and professionals – the ball is too heavy for children and it’s, quite frankly, not good enough for professionals.
A size 4 training ball is a must-have for anyone practicing regularly, and Molten’s Pro Touch is as good as it gets. This ball is smaller and lighter than a match ball, making it ideal for beginners and children.
Best Training Volleyball
Believe it or not, training volleyballs aren’t the same as match volleyballs – they’re actually smaller.
Practice volleyballs are a size 4, meaning they’re between 7 and 8 inches in diameter. Size 5 volleyballs are larger, between 8 and 8.6 inches in diameter.
This ball is just under 8 inches in diameter (size 4), and Molten is a great volleyball manufacturer, making this one of the best volleyballs for training.
For reference, know that Molten Pro Touch size 5 is the official competition volleyball used by USA Volleyball!
One thing that I’d like to point out is that, in my opinion, you only need this ball if you actually practice regularly. So, if you’re part of an amateur team and you meet weekly to practice, or if you train alone at home with solo training equipment – this investment is worth it.
However, if you just meet to play every once in a while, buying a separate volleyball just for practice is a waste of money.
- Anyone regularly practicing – if you play in an amateur league, for example, this is a great practice ball.
Not Ideal For
- Players who don’t practice regularly – if you just play volleyball for fun with your friends, there’s no need to buy a practice ball.
This ball is much lighter than a match ball and only 7 inches in diameter, making it possibly the lightest and the smallest ball on the market. Additionally, this makes it the safest volleyball for children!
Best Volleyball for Kids
Molten designed this ball specifically with kids in mind, and it’s a great choice for anyone aged 12 or under.
What makes this ball different from other balls? Regulation adult volleyballs weigh between 0.57 and 0.60 pounds (260-280 grams) – adult volleyballs can be too heavy for children to handle, and the ball can be quite painful for their forearms when they dig it.
This volleyball, however, only weighs 0.4 pounds (180 grams), making it much lighter and less painful to hit. Also, when the volleyball hits a child (which is inevitable in volleyball and happens all the time), it won’t be in any way dangerous for them.
To prevent injuries and pain when hitting, this ball uses a very soft polyurethane cover, so you don’t have to worry about painful forearms!
It’s also only 7 inches in diameter – the size of an adult practice volleyball. Since children have small hands, this makes the ball easier to handle.
- Children – this is the best volleyball for children.
Not Ideal For
- Adults – it’s too small and light for adults to use effectively.
Best Volleyball for Setters
We already wrote an in-depth article on weighted volleyballs where you can find out more about them and see which weighted volleyballs are the best ones.
The best all-around weighted volleyball is Mikasa’s MGV500!
This volleyball is perfectly weighted for a setter’s volleyball – it comes in at about 1 pound. Traditionally, a weighted ball for setters should be right about that weight (about 70% heavier than a regulation ball).
Aside from being perfectly weighted, it’s a long-lasting product that you’ll be using in training for years to come.
- Setters at any level
Not Ideal For
- Non-Setters – This ball was designed for setter training. It shouldn’t be used to play with or to train other positions.
- Small children – this ball is a pound heavy, which can be too heavy for children.
Best Beach Volleyball
Beach volleyball is the chill, laid-back version of the sport, and no ball emulates it better than Wilson’s AVP Splatted ball. It uses synthetic leather and an internal pressure lock to keep the air locked in for that optimal bounce.
This is the best beach volleyball for all recreational players, but if you want a cool alternative, check out this Cast Away Wilson volleyball based on the iconic Tom Hanks movie. I have to admit that it was difficult not to pick this one.
- Beach volleyball players of all ages.
Not Ideal For
- Indoor volleyball.
This simply depends on what you’ll use a volleyball for.
If you’re buying a volleyball for a child, you obviously need to buy a children’s ball. If you play volleyball recreationally, look into the best volleyball for recreational players (or the best volleyball on a budget, if you’re on a tight budget).
Professionals and players who play in amateur leagues should always opt for the best balls – while a recreational player may not be able to tell the difference, people who play weekly know the difference between professional-grade volleyballs and recreational volleyballs.
Training and setters’ volleyballs are only necessary if you’re training regularly. Professional and amateur teams use them, but you don’t need them if you’re just playing volleyball for fun. They’re also not match balls – pros use them for training exclusively!
Finally, beach volleyballs are designed specifically for beach volleyball – you shouldn’t use them for indoor games.
According to FIVB (The International Volleyball Federation), a regulation volleyball must weigh between 9.17 and 9.87 ounces (260 to 280 grams), while its circumference needs to measure between 25.6 and 26.38 inches (65 and 67 centimeters).
Since the FIVB is based in France, the metric system is originally used for all the measurements.
Proper Volleyball Air Pressure
The ideal air pressure level in a volleyball is between 4.26 and 4.61 PSI, according to the FIVB.
In case you don’t have a pump on you, you can check the air pressure by simply bouncing the ball off the floor. Even if you don’t put too much force behind it, the ball should reach 6 feet in height.
Do I Need Weighted Volleyballs?
You only need weighted volleyballs if you’re regularly training for the setter position. Volleyball teams, both professional and amateur, are the ones that need weighted volleyballs – if you’re not part of such a team, weighted volleyballs are an unnecessary investment for you.