Unlike most table games that can be played professionally foosball doesn’t have strict regulation ball requirements. There are a variety of different foosball balls to choose from that cater to a player’s preferences. There are 4 main types of foosball ball types; textured, cork, traditional, and smooth.
Textured foosball balls are the preferred ball for American professional foosball teams. These balls have the benefits of a denser ball as well as the texture to help get a better grip on the ball. A better grip means that it’s less likely for the ball to slip out from under one of the players toes when you attempt to stop the ball to make a hit.
Density is a preference that most American foosball players have. This allows for more powerful hits and contributes to the fast paced feel to your typical foosball game. Because this is a hard and fast ball, playing with it means the game will be noisy. In America, they prefer it this way but in places like Europe they are more likely to play with a softer ball.
Cork foosballs are made out of exactly what you would think they’d be made out of. Because cork is a softer material it helps to easily trap the foosball between the player and the table. However, it’s not so dense and doesn’t move as quickly.
European games are based on strategy so they prefer this ball to a fast moving one. The material and texture of this ball makes passing to players and executing different shots easier. Cork doesn’t create the loud whacking sound that harder foosballs make so if you don’t like a loud game this would be a good one.
Traditional foosball balls are typically the balls that come with your foosball table. They usually are designed to look like a real soccer ball with indented lines between the pentagon design. These indents cause the ball to move unpredictably.
Traditional foosballs are made out of a hard plastic that’s covered in a smooth coat which makes it really hard for the players to get a good grip on the ball. Other than inexperienced foosball players nobody really buys these balls.
This ball is almost just as bad as a traditional foosball. It is made about the same way as a traditional foosball which makes it one of the noisiest balls you could get. The lack of texture makes it just as useless in getting grip as a traditional foosball.
Smooth foosballs are one level up from traditional foosballs. The only difference between the two is the lack of design in a smooth ball. This helps the ball have a smoother roll and more controlled movement.
Factors To Consider:
There are four different types of foosball balls to choose from depending on what kind of style of gameplay you want to use. Does this mean that every cork ball is the same size? Does every textured ball have the same density? The answer is no. There are a couple factors to consider when picking out your perfect ball.
The weight of a foosball can determine the speed you want your ball to move at. As mentioned before a cork ball is going to move slower than a textured ball because it weighs less. Does a ball that weighs more always mean that it’s going to move quicker?
The benefit of a light weight ball is that it starts off moving quickly but slows down quickly as well. This is why it’s prefered if you like passing the ball from one rod to the other. It doesn’t have to go a far distance.
When you have a really heavy foosball it’s not going to have as much of a punch when you hit it but it’s more likely to move farther. Americans like to have a mix of skill and speed when they play foosball so they usually pick a ball with a medium weight.
The size of a foosball can also vary. Most tables are equipped to deal with different sizes of balls but players typically go by the size that the table provided because they work the best with that particular table. If a ball is too small or too big it can be hard to control it or hit it good with the foosball players.
If you are still having trouble picking out the right ball that fits with your playing style there are variety packs of different types of balls that you can try out or change out.
How Many Men Are On a Foosball Table?
The number of men on a foosball table can differ depending on the size of the table but a standard table has a total of 26 players, each person having 13. Each person has 2 3-man rods, 1 2-man rod, and 1 5-man rod.
How Do You Clean a Foosball Table?
When cleaning your foosball table all you really need to worry about is the rods and the table surface. To clean the surface, wipe it off with a dry or damp rag to collect the dust. After most of the dirt is off you can wipe it with a cloth that has a little bit of rubbing alcohol on it to get the rest of the dirt off.
For the rods it’s good to keep them in a slick condition. Don’t use any product that isn’t specialized for a foosball table because they can wear down the bumpers and bearings of the rods. A silicone spray made for the rods can help things move smoothly.