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How Do You Break In a New Soccer Ball?

How Do You Break In a New Soccer Ball?

Soccer equipment, like that used in other sports, must be kept in good condition so that the game can be played properly by both teams and enjoyed by spectators. It’s certainly satisfying when everything goes as planned, but this requires effort on the part of everyone involved. Breaking in a soccer ball, like preparing a piece of equipment, ensures that it is ready to use.

New balls are “broken in” to scrub away the surface’s thin white coating. If these coatings are not properly removed, the balls will be too slippery for players to hold securely, making the game unplayable.

Aside from that, these balls are “broken in” to ensure that they are long-lasting and in good condition. In this article, the reasons why soccer balls are “broken in,” as well as the methods used to do so, are thoroughly discussed, with step-by-step instructions provided where applicable.

Do you need to break in a new soccer ball?

You don’t want your new soccer ball to last only a day or a week. If you can, you’ll do everything you can to make it last for a season, which is roughly a year.

Soccer balls are typically made to be long-lasting, spanning anywhere from two months to a couple of years. You could use it for about eighteen months if you bought one made of strong material and used it indoors; Expect it to have a much shorter lifespan if it is made of weak material.

Soccer ball on the natural grass

However, even if some are readily available and considerably less expensive, you wouldn’t want to be welcomed to the pitch with a faulty ball. It will dampen the passion, and performance may suffer as a result. As such, to avoid damage, the soccer ball of any material type must be properly broken in.

Based on my personal feeling, the ball after being broken in also has better stability, I can control, make passes and shoot more accurately. Therefore, yes, you should break in soccer balls before you really bring them into an intense match.

Normally, you break in soccer balls when they are newly purchased, just before they are placed on the playing field. It is recommended to have it done in an open space around the house, but you can also break in a soccer ball beside the pitch. Preferably, make sure the area where you’re doing the prep is quiet.

How do you break in a new soccer ball?

For some people, soccer ball break-in is an entirely new concept they never knew existed. This probably explains why the lifespan of their soccer balls falls within a few months.

new soccer ball and cleats

Breaking in into new soccer balls is a simple thing to do with very little equipment needed. It’s best to have a valve needle, a pressure pump, and/or a good pressure pump with a gauge.

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Here’s a simple and quick way to break in your new soccer ball. It only takes a soccer pressure air pump to complete the task. Detailed instructions for doing so are provided below.

Step 1: Prep for inflation

With the best care possible, unfold the non-inflated ball. Try to feel the bladder moving around inside the ball.

You should notice how freely it moves except, of course, the area of the bladder attached to the ball’s valve.

Step 2: Lubricate the valve stem

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When done with the first step, apply about 1-2 drops of good valve oil in the stem. You can efficiently do this by first lubricating the valve needle.

While gently spinning the ball around, carefully move the needle inwards and out of the valve to allow the oil to sufficiently lubricate the valve.

Why is this done? Since a soccer ball is filled with it, lubricating the valve helps prevent unnecessary loss of air and also prevents damage from possible built-up dirt in the valve.

Step 3: Fill your new soccer ball with air

Normally, according to the Laws of the Game, soccer balls are inflated to pressures ranging from 8.5 to 15.6 psi. As usual, when you get your soccer ball, inflate it anywhere between this range.

If you’re unsure of the exact pressure to inflate to, most soccer balls come with recommended inflation pressure written on the ball. The above is the required range, so don’t sweat it if you can’t find it.

soccer ball and air pump

However, to break in, when you get your soccer ball, inflate it to a pressure of 1.5 psi above the recommended standard.

It is recommended to use a good pressure gauge to adequately measure up the psi as you inflate. If you don’t have one readily available, you can inflate the ball to a point where you are only able to push down ½” into the ball with your thumbs; while holding the ball.

Step 4: Let it rest

It’s best to leave the ball to rest for about 24 hours. Understandably you are itching to get the soccer ball onto a pitch but please let it rest for the recommended amount of time.

This allows the bladder to sit comfortably and adjust to the new pressure of the ball. After 24 hours, before rushing off to play, check the pressure to see if it’s still within the range.

Step 5: Let it play

Allow it to be used for practice three to four times per week for about two weeks. When that’s done, it should start breaking in, but don’t stop there.

soccer player are training

Step 6: Deflate the soccer ball

Remove about 1.5 psi of air from the ball to bring it to between 8.5 and 15.6 psi. After that, you’re finished, and your ball is ready to use.

This process of over-inflating soccer balls or pushing them to their maximum capacity during the first few moments of use allows them to expand a little more.

When you remove the air and keep it at 8.5 to 15.6 psi throughout the year, it has more bounce and the balls feel much softer.


If you’re concerned about the condition of your equipment, you should probably take special care of your soccer balls. The best way to do so is to begin the care process when the ball is brand new, with a break-in process.

With proper application of the above method, combined with ongoing general care of your soccer balls, you should be able to keep them in good condition for a couple of months.