What Are Soccer Balls Made Of? View Image

What Are Soccer Balls Made Of? View Image

Inside of a Soccer BallAre you wondering what soccer balls are made of? It’s a fun question to answer. Although it might not mean much to most people, knowing what a soccer ball is made out of can be eye opening.

There are many different types of soccer balls and each one could be made out of different materials.

Additionally, soccer balls have evolved tremendously over the years. There’s many different materials and colors to choose from.

Inside a Soccer Ball

First, let’s understand the different parts. There are:

  • Outer Casing
  • Inner Lining
  • Bladder
  • Stitch
  • Valve

Outer Casing

The outer casing is the outermost part of the ball and protects the insides from water and regular wear and tear.

Traditionally, the outer casing was made out of leather but in later decades manufacturers coated it with polyurethane. This helps protect the balls from scuffs and wet weather.

The modern soccer balls are made out of synthetic leather. Any quality soccer ball nowadays is made out of this with a coated polyurethane.

A plastic-like material called polyvinyl carbonate (PVC) is also used to make the out cover of soccer balls.

As you have experienced, there are a few materials used to make the outer cover of soccer balls. The balls that professionals play with are more leathery while kids under 7 typically play with something that’s more on the plastic side.

Inner Lining

The inner lining is the next layer and sits on top of the bladder. The inner lining determines the bounce of the ball.

Soccer balls can have two or four layers. The professional-quality balls have four layers of polyester and cotton. Cotton provides a softer feel and greater cushioning when the ball is kicked.


A soccer ball’s bladder holds air.

Butyl and natural latex are the materials of choice. At the professional level, natural latex is preferred as it’s more responsive. But, it doesn’t hold the air as tight as butyl does.

If you purchase a modern and more quality soccer ball, it’s just best to have a pump always accessible.


The stitches hold the different panels of the soccer ball together.

Most soccer balls are stitched together by polyester which is a durable material. Kevlar thread is also used to make it more water resistant.

The more modern soccer balls have been stitched together by thermal heating. So not really stitched but glued together.


The valve is the small part where the air passes down when inflating it from the outside. It is the black hole that you can see from the top of the ball.

Soccer valves are usually made out of butyl because of its elasticity.

Most professional balls are made out of silicone which provide better air retention.

Beau Bridges - Soccer Novo Hey 👋 I’m Beau. A proud Dad, former coach and soccer enthusiast. I continue to love the game of soccer today the same way I did when I was 7. I created soccernovo.com to share what I know about the game as well as provide a platform so other parents can learn more about youth soccer in the U.S.

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