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Rugby Balls

Here at Stadia Sports, we’ve selected the perfect line up of rubgy balls to choose from, kicking the rest into the sin bin! But if you’re wondering what the difference is between all the balls, the following information may help.

We offer a choice of 3 rugby ball sizes, each designed to offer a particular age group the best chance of improving their game. Size 3 is the smallest official size and size 5 is the largest.
Size 3 – For players aged 6-9 years old
Size 4 – For players aged 9-14 years old
Size 5 – For players aged 14 and over

Panel Construction
All rugby balls are made from 4 rubber panels, which are sewn together to make the required oval shape of the rugby ball. The panels have a pimpled surface that provides additional grip. The type of rubber used is the key factor here. Natural rubber produces the best quality match ball because it provides a good grip which is essential for ball performance in matches. The alternative is synthetic rubber, which offers less grip but is far more durable, making it ideal for training and entry level rugby balls.

Panel Performance
Within any rugby ball, there are a number of layers of material between the outer panel and the bladder, which are referred to as plys. Plys can be made from cotton or synthetic materials, depending on the quality required. As a general rule, match balls have 3 plys and training balls have either 2 or 3 plys. A 3 ply ball is heavier, has a better transfer of power when kicked, and is less affected by weather conditions when it flies through the air.

The ball’s bladder is the part that holds the air. They can be made from natural latex, which offers great bounce and performance properties but slowly leaks air, so the balls have to be re-inflated regularly. In comparison, bladders made from the synthetic material butyl have bounce properties that are almost as good as natural latex but they retain air better.

The valve doesn’t sound all that important but it actually makes a big impact on the performance of a ball. It adds weight to the ball but only on one side, which creates an imbalance. This means that the placement of the valve can improve or decrease the performance of the balls. On the better match style balls, the valve is located in one of the seams of the ball. This helps players increase the rotation of the ball and can increase the potential distance of a pass. On the other hand, a valve located in the centre of a panel can have the opposite effect. However, it’s a lesser factor for training and entry level balls, which is why the general rule is that a training ball has the valve within a panel to be cost effective.

Browse our full range below, and if you’d like a friendly chat with one of our rugby equipment specialists, give us a call on 01782 571 719, or email

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