Journey of a soccer ball

Journey of a Soccer Ball

These days Soccer fever is caught up in the world, Soccer which is one of the most popular sports on our planet is dependent on one thing without which there wouldnt been a game of soccer and guess what it is, yes you are right it is the Soccer Ball. Interested to know how this small spherical structure created one of the most popular game of History, then browse down to find them.

According to history, early balls ranged from stitched up cloth, pig or cow bladders to human and animal skulls!

Certain ancient Egyptian rites as told by historians have similarities with the present day football, and also both the ancient Romans and Greeks played a game that entailed as carrying and kicking a ball. During the Han Dynasty (255 BC-220 AD), the Chinese played ‘tsu chu’, in which animal-skin balls were dribbled through gaps in a net stretched between the poles.
According to pre-medieval legend, an entire village would kick a skull along a path to a nearby village square. Then the opposing village would in turn attempt to kick the skull to the first village’s square. That would have for sure probably caused more riots than in modern soccer games.

A Medieval custom was to take pig bladders used from live stock which were killed in preparation for winter sustenance and then inflate them. They would play a game using their feet and hands to keep the «ball» in the air. They would cover these animal bladder balls eventually with leather for better shape retention.

Prior to 1836, the year in which Charles Goodyear patented vulcanized rubber, balls were dependant on the size and shape of the pig’s bladder. More irregular the bladder, more unpredictable the behavior of the soccer balls was when kicked. In 1855, Charles Goodyear designed and built in what is called the first vulcanized rubber soccer balls or footballs.

The year when the first Football association namely English Football Association was formed in the year of 1863, it had no laws for the soccer ball. No specific description of the soccer ball was offered in the first set of rules. When the revised rules came up in 1872 it was agreed that the soccer ball «must be spherical with a circumference of 27 to 28 inches» (68.6 cm to 71.1 cm). The same rule remains even in today’s FIFA Laws. After fixing the official weight and size of the soccer balls for the first time in 1872, very little has changed ever so far in 1937 when their was an increase in the official weight from 13-15 oz to 14-16 oz. What has changed drastically over the last few years is that of the material the soccer ball is made of and also its shape panels that make up the design of the ball.

During World War II there were many further production enhancements to the soccer ball. The addition of a carcass made of strong cloths between the bladder and outer cover made controlling the shape much easier than the early types, provided damping, and made the ball stronger than before. It was not until the 1960′s that the very first totally synthetic ball was produced. Synthetics which are used in today’s soccer balls emulate the cell structure and the quality of leather with less water absorption.

The first «official» FIFA world cup soccer ball was the Adidas Telstar which was used in the 1970 world cup at Mexico.

Many companies have recently come out with new high tech materials and designs for soccer balls for a more aggressive competitive market. Many latest developments in soccer ball design is still continuing. The objective of any soccer ball manufacture is to develop the optimum soccer ball that is flight accurate, fast in flight, water proof and transfers all of your kicking force to the ball (does not absorb energy), is safe to head the ball, and has soft feel. All the above are required for a quality soccer ball also adhering to ball specifications given by governing bodies such as FIFA

The latest in Soccer Ball innovation is the Adidas Jublani ball which is the official soccer ball for the ongoing soccer World Cup. This one is the best in the market with accuracy much better than the existing soccer balls in the market.

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