What are the Top Outdoor Portable Hoops?
I am a great lover of the basketball game. My enthusiasm for the sport took root at an early stage of my life when my folks decided to install a temporary hoop in the backyard.
My brother and I loved it. We moved around a lot. Even so, my love for the game didn’t fade, and I had everything I needed to enjoy shooting and even dunking.
The temporary hoop provided the platform I needed to not only learn a few tricks in the game but also perfect on the basics.
Even as I spend my adult life far from home, I still find the portable hoop a convenient accessory in my abode. In most neighborhoods, permanent loops aren’t allowed as they used to in the past.
The only choice left for any family with a deep love for the sport is to consider a portable hoop, just like my parents did. With these, you don’t have to worry about stringent neighborhood laws or the extra cost of structuring a new loop when evacuating your old premises.
Since these types of hoops are cost-effective, easy to install and move around, it’s still mandatory that, as a purchaser, you should consider several factors before picking any loop you find in the market.
Today I’ll be saving you the hassle of walking through every store, looking for the right hoop, by taking you through a variety of circlets, depending on your budgetary plans. My sole purpose is to make sure you find the best girdle to fit in the extra space on your driveway or backyard.
|① Lifetime Pro Court -TOP PICK|
|② Lifetime Front Court|
|③ Lifetime 52” Portable|
|④ Spalding Pro Slam|
|⑤ Silverback NXT|
1. Lifetime Pro Court
The Lifetime Pro Court is the best pick if you need an adjustable hoop for your little ones. Besides being adaptable and convenient for your children, the loop is affordable and comfortable with your wallet.
It’s a portative and lightweight girdle, so there’s no need to worry about transportation. Its height can be adjusted from seven and a half feet to ten feet. Also, the loop is made of sturdy materials that will endure the wind, rain, and hailstorms for a long time.
- Putting up the hoop is rather easy. The assembly process will take a short amount of time.
- The telescoping mechanism allows for easy adjustment of the loop.
- This hoop is affordable and a perfect choice for kids.
- Adjusting the height of the hoops is a lengthy and complicated process. It would require a second adult to finish the process faster.
- The hoop is specially designed for kids. The backboard is directly attached to the support post, so dunking would mean crashing straight into the pole.
2. Lifetime Front Court
The backboard of the Lifetime Front Court Basketball Goal is made of polycarbonate. Polycarbonate is more reliable and more durable compared to most materials, thus stable, in case you are a professional who would love to keep the game alive in your driveway.
It is a bit heavier compared to the Pro Court but still as portable. Owing to the sturdy pole and firm girdle of the Lifetime Front Court, dunking is possible.
Aside from a stout build, this hoop has a transparent backboard you can see through comfortably. This kind of backboard allows you to make more innovative layups.
The breakaway technique is also integrated into the rim structure to soften bounces and improve your dunking.
- The hoop is the best choice if you have children whose ages are reasonably apart. The height of the Pro Court can be adjusted quickly for any of your children.
- The backboard hangs a few inches from the support post. The wide gap gives you more room to land when making a dunk.
- Many users have complained of the lengthy installation process. The hoop is a bit heavy, so putting it all up is as hard as reading from the poorly detailed instructions that come with the girdle.
The Lifetime 52” resembles the Front Court in every way. Its backboard is as transparent as the Front Court, the pole is just as sturdy, and the height adjustability options are user-friendly and manageable, even by kids.
The slight difference with this portable band is the 52” basketball backboard. It’s made of the exact polycarbonate corporeal but more prominent than the latter. The base constitutes a stable 35-gallon cavern that gives the hoop the stability needed for a safe game.
Adjusting the height of this hoop is relatively different compared to the process followed when making adjustments with the Front Court.
The aerial power-lifting mechanism allows you to adjust your hoop six inches lower compared to the Front Court design, that is, from 10 feet to 7.5 feet in one go. With such a remarkable option at hand, your little ones can enjoy shooting without straining too much to reach loftier hoops.
- The height of this hoop is more adjustable than any other loop. The adjustability provides an enjoyable playing point even for small kids who can barely shoot high.
- It’s made of a strong base that gives the entire structure stability and easier portability at the same time.
- This hoop is priced just like the Front Court design. Nonetheless, some purchasers find their pricing higher, thus unable to make acquisitions.
4. Spalding Pro Slam
With a 54” sturdy transparent backboard and a 34-gal base for stability, the Spalding Pro Slam is quite unrivaled in the basketball world.
The company boasts being one of the biggest suppliers of basketball accessories all over the globe. Furthermore, it is an official facilitator of the world’s largest basketball league, the NBA.
For this reason, the company prints the NBA emblem on its backboards, making the hoop an even excellent acquisition.
It’s easy to make layups and creative runs with the Spalding, as this is made possible with the extended backboard that bends far from the attaching pole.
The rims are breakaway models and the backboards large enough to facilitate ingenious dunking. Adjustability options allow easier changing of heights, usually from seven and a half to ten feet, that’s six inches in increment.
- The sizeable transparent board provides the perfect surface to make accurate swishes and layups.
- The base is sturdy. The hoop is strong enough to support heavy weights when dunking.
- Anyone can enjoy the basketball sport, be it a professional player or an enthusiastic kid who has just learned to shoot. Height adjustment takes seconds.
- It’s rather hectic to assemble the Spalding Pro Slam. Even with a partner assisting, the installation process may take close to five hours.
5. Silverback NXT
The Silverback is one of the sleekest basketball hoops you’ll come across today. The first noticeable aspect of the NXT is the modern backboard that does not constitute the conventional outer frame like other designs. Its frame-less but with a modern touch.
Its height is adjustable to give users of all ages and expertise an easy time when shooting. With a loft increment of 6 inches between 10 and 7.5 feet, nothing can deter your love for the game.
The entire hoop frame is sturdy and structurally engineered to withstand heavy weights and vicious dunking. The board hangs 26 inches from the pole to give you extra space you can land on when making layups and dunks.
- The Silverback NXT is a premium hoop. It’s not only built with quality materials to last but also a sturdier frame that will scarcely rattle when shooting.
- It has a quick height adjustability option for persons of different playing caliber.
- The installation instructions are carefully and simply detailed to make the assembly process fast and easy.
- It’s an expensive hoop. You have to part with a reasonable sum during acquisition.
What you should look for in a quality portable basketball hoop
Basketball hoops are different from other merchandise that we often purchase owing to the love for the sport. Unlike hops and playing gear, girdles are taller, broader, some more substantial and others more complicated to put up.
All in all, you must purchase a quality hoop that fits all your needs and those of your family members who would love to spend time engaging in the sport.
That said, different basketball hoops are being brought forward for sale, not only by online merchants but also through physical outlets and stores.
To find the design that you’ll be comfortable playing with, you must take into account your financial capability, the quality of the model you are looking for, and the convenience that comes with the acquisition.
These three elementary considerations form the basis of our discussion today: which is the right hoop for my kids or myself?
In terms of financial capability, one can afford an averagely priced hoop or an expensive one, depending on the credits one has at hand.
Quality, however, is the broadest factor here, as it encompasses the other two elements: money and convenience.
Mastering these aspects is your direct ticket to a quality basketball hoop that will get you and your loved ones playing all day long.
Without a proper backboard on your hoop, the model won’t do you any good.
If you are interested in an enjoyable basketball experience, then it’s fundamental that you invest in a quality backboard that will make your layups or imitation of iconic dunks memorable, pleasant, and fulfilling.
There are three factors you should keenly examine when choosing the right backboard for your loop.
- Size of the basketball backboard
The NCAA and NBA have established their standard backboard measurements; 42 and 72 inches in lengths and widths, respectively.
Nonetheless, these margins are rarely possible in backyards or driveways. It would only be possible if you intended to build a proficient court in your own home.
The smallest backboards are 44-inch long. These are so small that it would be difficult to make proper layups. Similarly, banking shots on the board would be inaccurate most of the time.
The best boards to play with ought to start at 52 inches going upwards. A 54” backboard is the best alternative, as it offers a pro feel. Also, it becomes easier to make layups as well as slanting floaters.
If you need a larger backboard with better quality, then you’d be forced to go premium. The backboards in this category are usually 60-inch models.
The 72-inch designs are the most lavish. They are the best but often reserved for professional players.
Glass, polyethylene, and acrylic are the most widely used materials in making backboards.
Polyethylene is also known as polycarbonate. It’s ordinarily plastic and is commonly used to make cheaper backboards for basketball hoops.
The main advantage of polycarbonate is its indestructibility. Owing to the rigidity, it doesn’t break easily and can last you a long time. Notwithstanding, plastic comes with two disadvantages.
First, the ricochet effect on a plastic board is terrible. The ball will bounce almost as if it has no air in it. Besides, the look of plastic on board will tell you it’s no hoop for an adult. Polycarbonate is the perfect selection if you are looking for a girdle for your kids.
Acrylic is a more robust and more reliable material compared to plastic. Most of the acrylic boards are transparent. The transparency gives the hoop a more adept feel. However, acrylic is way softer than plastic, thus prone to scratches as time goes by.
Acrylic resin is moderately priced hence a common material for hoops in the middle price ranges. It is not as heavy as hardened glass. Therefore, the overall frame of the loop, specifically the base, need not be extraordinarily sturdy or heavy to hold the backboard intact.
The only problem with lightweight material like acrylic is its susceptibility to wind. Also, the bouncing effect of the ball on the board will only be average.
Mollified glass is used in the top leagues like the NBA and the NCAA. It is the most massive and most preferred material owing to the hardened nature of its structure.
All the same, installing a hoop with a glass backboard would require a strong base with a massive pole to offer support. Once you’ve achieved this, you are guaranteed an enjoyable game, a perfect rebound reflex, and a satisfactory platform for any bank shot or layup.
Hardened glass doesn’t get scratched easily. It stays clean for the longest time, unlike most components that discolor after too much exposure to direct sunlight.
The counterpoise of a backboard refers to the gap between the support pole and the backboard. Smaller offsets are dangerous and a great hindrance to a successful dunk or layup.
If the gap is too small, you’ll find yourself continually crashing against the basketball pole.
However, a professional goal will have the counterpoise in a more elongated design, such that the board will be hanging more than four feet away from the pole.
Most of the portable models do not have four-foot-long offsets. Regardless, the gaps won’t prevent you from shooting or practicing.
If you feel you need to make more real layups and dunks, then you should find a deeper overhang in addition to reinforcing the pole with thick padding.
Any hoop you’ll find out there will have the same 18-inch diameter. The only disparity in the designs is the technique that’s used to attach the rim to the backboard.
Standard rims are screwed directly into lower sections of backboards. The adjoining makes the sides stable and harder to detach from the backboard. Even so, rebounds in such rims are longer. Shots will be less accurate because the ball will be bouncing in and outside the edge.
Dunking can be messy with a standard rim onboard. The energy used when dunking will be transmitted to the board, making it easier to damage the entire board or hurt your hands.
The breakaway rims are built with constriction springs that dampen your shots, resulting in a softer ball that keeps your spirits high throughout the game.
When dunking on a breakaway brim, most of the force is transmitted to the constriction springs.
There are two types of breakaway rims, the cheaper designs whose springs are more exposed and the pricier versions with durable brims and covered springs. Versions with springs are rust-resistant and long-lasting.
The support post
A basketball hoop should have a stable pole, as this is very significant because it contributes to the stability of the entire basketball hoop.
Most of the portable hoops being offered for sale have adjustable heights. The ability to change lofts comes in handy when preparing the loop for your kids who may be enthusiastic about learning the sport.
However, it’s usually hard to construct a stable support post with a flexible option. Most of the cheap or averagely-priced designs are built with three-piece posts.
More premium hoops use two-piece posts that are stable and hardly shaky.
When it comes to convenience, height adjustments vary. The telescope adjusting mechanism is adopted in cheaper goals. The technique takes time to make adjustments.
Fancy designs, however, have adopted the turnkey jack mechanism that is easier and faster. It allows users to pick any loft betwixt 7.5 and 10 inches.
There is no basketball hoop without a base. It’s not only the part that facilitates the mobility of the structure but also the primary feature that creates the requisite stability for any hoop.
The base constitutes a large repository that should be filled with sand or water. A big vessel provides a more substantial capacity that will give the structure a more stable setup.
Expert tip: Layering the base with base gel helps to keep it firm. Also, the gel prevents the core from developing seams during winter. In a nutshell, the base gel will prevent leakages and provide additional stability to your hoop.
Cheaper hoops designed for starters have 27-quart capacities. Backboards are constructed using polycarbonate to make the entire structure lightweight, owing to the small size of the base.
Therefore, the base of a starter’s hoop shouldn’t be as massive as the professional designs.
A hoop with a backboard made of acrylic will have a more massive base. The capacity of such support should be close to 35 gals.
The priciest hoops are the heaviest. The base of an expensive circlet should have a capacity exceeding 50 gals. The major downside of owning a loop with a massive vessel for a base is portability.
It’s rather strenuous to move a 55-gallon hoop around the home.
If you are moving the hoop around daily, you should find a model with wheels. Luckily, most of the loops today have rollers on their feet.
Today, movable basketball hoops are being sold in different price categories. This not only gives you a wide variety to select from but also an opportunity to find a model that is comfortable with your wallet.
Besides the variety you get from pricing, there are good options for all lovers of the sport, depending on the level of professionalism that you have in the game.
Even as you purchase basketball hoops based on your financial ability, ease of use as well as target users, it’s still critical that you check for stability and durability of the girdle.
This way, you are guaranteed of a long-lasting and rewarding accessory that will take your love for the sport to the next level.
All in all, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t go for the Spalding Pro Slam. I’ve been there more than once, and trust me, waiting for the right time to get the product of your choice never comes.
Most basketball hoops out there are being sold are built to favor one type of player in each category, but the Spalding… this is an absolute gem as it is tailored to fit any player regardless of their skill level, financial capability,(it’s averagely priced, of course) tastes or preferences.
My best advice, go for it now! Get it while stocks last, and you’ll delight in your acquisition for the rest of your life.