Portable basketball hoops are very much like traditional hoops except that they are movable while the latter is fixed.
This feature makes them versatile – you can use them pretty anywhere you please.
Six Key Features to look for in A Manufactured Home Portable Basketball Hoop
While almost any type of portable basketball hoop can be a welcome add-on to your backyard or driveway, consider determining which features will be important to users before choosing one.
The base of portable hoops often comes with wheels to give you an easy time transporting and also prevent damage to both the ground and the hoop itself.
The base also needs to have a large surface area to distribute its weight over a wide area and achieve balance as well as maintain stability.
If the base isn’t wide enough and you still can compromise, you may fill it with sand and water. As a bonus, a few hoops come with a dock to keep the basketball held when you’re not using it.
There’s no way you’re going to enjoy the game without having a backboard behind the hoop. The board needs to be quality and reliable.
Also, it should be big enough to provide a near authentic experience (as you’re using a professional hoop) as possible.
However, make sure you choose a small-sized board as you’d have a not-so-good experience using an oversize unit.
Professional-style boards can measure about 72” wide, but any backboard that is at least 54” across will be great for play.
The rim is the circular “brim” on which the net hangs. The basketball needs to pass through the rim and sometimes has to hit the border before passing through.
The Rim is probably more important than backboards but it will depend on the individual need. Again, you will need something durable and tough, especially if you consider the fact that a player may jump and hang on it during play.
The rim needs to be capable of supporting the weight of an average human and should be weatherproof because it will spend a long time outdoors. Choose a rim made from sturdy materials such as aluminum or steel.
Some models include features that support action flex breakaway, which helps distribute your weight during a high dunk.
While it isn’t particularly advisable to dunk with a portable basketball hoop, a rim with this feature makes it very possible.
Do you live in a windy climate?
While the base of the hoop may be weighted, extreme weather and strong winds could still move the hoop unit out of place.
Repetitive play too can cause the unit to shift position quite easily. It is worth ensuring the portable hoop comes with a support system that guarantees player safety and additional stability.
While they are mostly constructed of durable and sturdy materials, toppling and crashing on the floor could easily break or even bend some parts.
Go for a padded frame which can prove useful for protecting players from accidents and injuries in the event the competition gets too rowdy.
Every hoop should come with bracing. The bracing mechanism allows you to add the net and rim to the backboard. Choose metallic all-weather bracing as inferior materials might cause it to split, crack, or deteriorate too fast.
Not that the bracing is not simply an install-and-forget kind of item. You will still need to inspect and monitor it constantly and take good care of it, checking it often to ensure it’s not damaged.
No matter how durable the manufacturer claims it is, you still need to replace it from time to time, especially if the weather has been extreme lately.
Five Factors to Consider While Purchasing a Decent and Portable Basketball Hoop That Fits Your Playing Needs
There’s a lot of things you need to keep in your mind when shopping for a portable hoop, especially if you want to land nothing but only the best product the market could offer. Bear in mind these factors:
- Support Pole
- Height Adjustment
Let’s take a look at each factor in detail below:
Backboards come in a variety of sizes, offset, materials, etc.
If you want the best basketball hoop that suits your playing conditions and requirements, you need to select material and size more wisely as these factors have a big influence on many aspects of the product.
So, What’s The Ideal SIZE of a Portable Hoop?
There’s no ideal size of a portable hoop.
But there is a more preferable size range average players would use.
The hoops you often see in major competitions across the country are approved by the NCAA and NBA.
You want something very close or exactly like them.
The approved size is 72” X 42”. But those are inground hoops. If you are shopping for a smaller unit you’d like to play in your backyard or driveway, it only makes sense you go for the 44” option.
Still, this can be remarkably small for some players. If you’re open to a standardized size for a portable hoop system, then ideally, consider choosing ones that measure 54” wide.
What’s The Preferable MATERIAL of Construction?
Backboards used on basketball hoops are almost always made from 3 materials:
- Tempered Glass,
The ones we often see in the NBA are mainly tempered glass.
Tempered glass offers a more complete playing experience because the rebounds are more realistic.
Bank shots are also quite satisfying and exciting when you use tempered glass backboards.
The only drawback with tempered glass backboards in the high price tag that might keep you off.
If you are searching for a cheaper backboard, we’d recommend something made from polycarbonate.
Another advantage of polycarbonate besides affordability is that it can’t be damaged easily, meaning it can last many years without requiring a replacement.
The main drawback of polycarbonate backboards, however, is that the rebounds never feel as satisfactory as those you’d get from tempered glass product, meaning won’t get a great playing experience.
The third most popular material Acrylic.
Backboards made from Acrylic are higher than polycarbonate and lower than tempered glass ones.
Also, unlike the polyethylene or plastic versions, they are transparent.
If you are looking for backboards that offer a professional outlook, go for a product made from Acrylic.
But the main drawback with acrylic is its soft nature which is bound makes it more vulnerable to damages and fast aging compared to other materials.
Get The OFFSET Right
The overall distance between the backboard and the supporting pole is referred to as the offset (or ‘offset of the backboard’). Although it may pose problems with an inground basketball hoop, it isn’t the same with most portable hoops.
The standard rims found on portable basketball hoops are 18” in size. But don’t pay too much attention to the size. Rather, focus on how the rim connects to the backboard.
Standard v/s Breakaway – Which Would Work for You?
There are actually 2 types of rims:
Standard rims are linked to the backboard via screws.
While standard rims are known for stability, the rebounds don’t feel natural at all hence they are not a priority if you are looking for a more realistic experience.
Another thing is, slam dunks are near impossible with this kind of rim. So, if you want something better off that avoids these flaws, choose a breakaway rim.
Breakaway rims are designed to dampen the bounce, thanks to the compression offered by the springs. This is the preferred type of rim for professional basketball matches.
3. Support Pole
Another factor to put into consideration is the supporting pole, which serves to provide the support and stability for the portable basketball hoop.
Should Be Adjustable
Although support poles with height adjustment capabilities make it hard to achieve much-needed stability, they support elongation and shortening to meet different height needs. If you are looking for a robust and stable support pole, get one that comes as a 1- or 2-piece unit.
4. Support Base
The base has an influence on the hoop’s stability hence, it’s vital to go for a robust and high-capacity base. Because the stability of any unit will depend on the base’s capacity, it is always a good idea to go for a larger base, for it always translates to a more stable hoop.
Most of the base capacities you will find are in the region of 27, 40, and 50 gallons. Units with higher gallon ratings come with capacities in the region of 50 gallons or more. So, if you would like greater stability, consider investing in large-sized bases.
5. Height Adjustment
As mentioned earlier, most of the basketball hoops feature height adjustment capabilities.
But portable versions are a little unique – the mechanism applied in portable basketball hoop nets can be broomstick adjustment, telescopic pole, crank handle, pneumatic adjustment, etc.
We’d recommend you go for a product with the crank handle mechanism because it is the most user-friendly option available – just move the crank in the shown directions to make adjustments to the height of the unit.
A Few Portable Basketball Hoop FAQs
Q: What Do We Even Mean by “Portable Basketball Hoop?”
A: Conventional basketball hoops are normally fixed. Portable basketball hoops are a unique type of those, as they can be moved between any two points in your outdoor court.
But, you might ask yourself, why do they even exist when the buyer has plenty of existing options that permit them to shoot their hoops on a Saturday evening?
Well, it’s not an exclusive secret; some of the homes built nowadays won’t permit you to fix your basketball hoop to walls, nor will they allow in-ground hoops that stand there permanently until the end of times.
It’s from such situations that portable basketball hoops were born. This no-commitment design actually makes them appealing and to be a highly attractive unit compared to traditional models.
Also, the movability makes it very easy to remove from sight and hide them in your garage throughout winter or when you want to repurpose your backyard.
The best thing is that their construction often features the same quality and durability found in traditional hoops.
They are stable, all-around versatile, and adjustable equipment suitable for everyone.
Q: It Is a Good Idea to Add Sand or Water to Your Portable Basketball Hoop?
A: Because basketball hoops are considerably heavy, they need something to keep them grounded. Some buyers might think of filling the base with a heavy stabilizer like concrete.
However, this move can produce a range of problems.
Firstly, the concrete will certainly harden in a short time, making it expand and resulting in splitting at the base. Secondly, concrete tends to harden into a heavy mass that can be difficult to move around.
This will eliminate the portability benefit. portability. With that said, we’d recommend sand or water or both.
Most of the portable basketball hoops you will find in the store are compatible with water and sand, so it is really up to the buyer to make a decision.
Water will be easier to remove and is readily accessible compared to sand. Conversely, sand will be a little tricky to get, and you might also find it hard to remove it out of the base.
However, sand comes with the advantage of staying in the base much longer. If there’s a leak underneath, water will drain quickly no matter what.
But because sand can pack together, a few grains will be lost, not all of it.
Q: Are Portable Hoops Safe?
A: That’s a 60-million-dollar question for anyone planning to buy this type of hoops for the first time. Portable basketball hoops, when used properly, are perfectly safe for players of any age.
If you still feel you need more safety, you can boost the inbuilt safety features by filling the base to provide maximum capacity.
To do that, however, you will need to go through the outlined processes in the instructions manual.
Filling it will offer enough weight needed to balance the structure and prevent the danger of toppling over, even during high winds. For additional confidence, however, consider securing it in the right place with a strong.
As much as hanging and dunking on the basketball hoop are tempting, don’t just go about doing it whenever you get the temptation.
The extra weight you will add on your side could interfere with the structure’s equilibrium, causing it to topple forward with you still dragging it down.
This is serious and might result in injuries or you could get stuck under the structure entirely.
It is important to take care when putting your hoop together, especially if you’re a child or short. Portable hoops are quite easy to assemble, but some parts are considerably heavy, and it may require two individuals to provide sufficient support. Trying to go all alone isn’t particularly a good idea.
Q: So Where Should I Install/Keep My Portable Hoop?
A: The best thing about portable basketball hoops is that the user can put them wherever there’s space, functioning as both outdoor and indoor portable gaming equipment.
As long as there’s plenty of room to wheel them into position, the user can shoot their hoops all weekend long.
You will most likely keep the portable hoop in your front yard or driveway, as it will provide the most space for two units and still give you a decent extra space to walk around without damaging plants, garden furniture, or flowerbeds.
However, you can choose to take them to your park or even use them at school for you and your buddies’ basketball tournaments.
When you are not using the portable hoop, you can choose to keep it anywhere on the driveway as long as you empty the water first if you’re situated in a cold climate.
This move can prevent the unit from freezing. And if you do it, remember to lay the unit flat, so it does not blow over.
In case the hoop starts appearing unsightly to you and you’re not even using it, just adjust or disassemble it to low height settings and store it safely in your garage or at the back of your house if there’s enough space.
Q: How Much Should I Plan to Spend On a Portable Hoop
A: A decent portable hoop costs anywhere between $30 and $100 depending on the material, brand, and other factors.
Brands to check out are Spalding, Rakon, ONETWOFIT, and GoSports.
It is important that you prepare a budget and make up your mind about the maximum amount of money you are willing to spend on a portable hoop.
While it is perfectly normal for a shopper to prepare a budget based on their needs and the amount of money they have, it would be great if you don’t compromise with the minimum options available.
A budget helps you avoid overspending, impulse buying, and at times, going for a wrong product that doesn’t even meet your requirements leave alone your financial abilities.
However, there’s nothing wrong with going for a cheaper model as long as you understand what it’s able to provide.