The Best Basketball Hoops For Kids And Toddlers (2019 UPDATE)

Basketball is a sport popular among young, old, and everyone in between. Even though your child may not be old enough to play on a team just yet, it’s never a bad idea to get  them acquainted with the basics at an early age–and not to mention simply a great way for them to have heaps of fun!

One of the benefits of buying a basketball hoop for your child is less time spent in front of the TV, and more time spent developing their social and motor skills. With that said, choosing the best basketball hoop for your child can be quite tricky, given the sheer number of options available. 

After careful research of the various options in this space, we’ve narrowed down our favourite basketball hoops for kids. And if you aren’t sure about what to look out for when shopping around, our kids basketball hoop buying guide will cover the key points to consider. 

Best Basketball Hoop For Kids At A Glance

Kids grow up really fast, don’t they?

Depending on their age, some hoops are more suitable than others. That’s why we’ve split kids’ hoops into three categories.

Key Things To Consider When Purchasing A Hoop

Where to put it – kids basketball hoops come in a range of types and sizes, which is why it is first and foremost important to choose a location to place it.

Type of hoop – once you’ve selected a location to set your basketball hoop, you will know what type of hoop works best for that spot. There are three common types of basketball hoops available – portable (typically standalone units with wheels), mounted (can be placed on a door or other similar support structure) and in-ground (secured into the ground with cement). Kids’ hoops are generally either portable or mounted over the door.

Backboard – just like the hoop design, the backboard of a kids’ basketball hoop can be made from several different materials including polycarbonate (highly durable), acrylic (showcases a glass look without the premium price tag) and tempered glass (usually only seen in pro level hoops). 

Height adjustment – since a basketball hoop is not something you want to be buying often, it is wise to buy a model that grows with your child. The height of most of kids’ basketball hoops is adjustable, so you can easily lower or increase the height of the hoop accordingly.

Base – the base is the component that keeps the hoop upright, so make sure it is sturdy and won’t easily tip over. Most bases can be filled with either sand or water, but the former is more challenging to remove when you empty the base. 

Rim – the rims of most of the best basketball hoops are generally made from high quality steel to handle a beating. Plastic made rims are softer and recommended for kids younger than 6 years old.

Best Basketball Hoops for Toddlers

Toddlers are children aged 12-36 months old. As the name would suggest they’re just getting the hang of how to walk or ‘toddle’.

At this age it’s impossible to play ‘proper’ basketball as we know it, but picking up a ball and getting it in the net is a big step for these young ones. Here are our favorite hoops for toddlers:

Little Tikes EasyScore Basketball Set – Our Top Pick

Headquartered in Hudson, Ohio and founded in 1969, Little Tikes is one of the leading brands in the kid’s toy space, and the EasyScore Basketball hoop is a fantastic choice for the especially young players. 

The Little Tikes EasyScore Basketball Set is suited for both indoor and outdoor spaces, and is designed for kids between the ages of 18 months and 5 years old. 

It is a great hoop to get toddlers a head start in the game of basketball. It is equipped with an oversized rim to help kids score more easily, keeping things fun and encouraging further play.

This basketball hoop for kids by Little Tikes greatly encourages toddlers and preschoolers to play independently, while helping them hone their balance and coordination skills. It measures 23.8 x 22 x 61 inches, and tips the scales at just 7 lbs, making it easy to move across rooms and areas. 

One of the noteworthy features of the Little Tikes EasyScore Basketball hoop is that its height can be adjusted between 2.5 feet and 4 feet, making it an ideal choice for children between the ages of 18 months to 5 years old. It is made from safe, high quality plastic, and comes with three junior size basketballs, so you can get started right out of the box. 

Key Features

  • Adjustable height (2.5ft-4ft)
  • Made from high quality plastic that is perfectly safe for toddlers
  • Comes with 3 basketballs 
  • Two color options

MICROFIRE Magic Shot Hoop

The MICROFIRE Magic Shot Hoop is a great choice for toddlers, with an adjustable height of up to 5ft. It can be used in both indoor and outdoor spaces. 

The base of the MICROFIRE Magic Shot Hoop can be filled with either water or sand for stability. The balls included with this toddler basketball hoop can be deflated easily to take with you on the go. 

The whole hoop is easy to assemble, and is backed by a 1 year warranty against any manufacturer defects. 

Key Features

  • Perfect for toddlers 
  • Adjustable height (up to 5ft)
  • Comes with balls 
  • Can be used indoor and outdoors 

Liberty Imports Portable Mini Basketball Hoop

The Liberty Imports Portable Mini Basketball Hoop is a great choice for parents looking to improve their child’s interaction skills, and develop both their physical and mental skills. It rests sturdily on a durable plastic base, and comes with a solid metal stand and hoop, a backboard that measures 13.5 inches wide, and 7 inch diameter rim. 

This basketball hoop is suited for kids between the ages of 18 months to 5 years. It is made from non-toxic materials and powder coated for enhanced durability. Adding to this, the height of the Liberty Imports kids basketball hoop can be adjusted between 2 to 4 feet, and its base can be filled with either water or sand and set on a flat surface. 

Best Youth Basketball Hoops (Under 10yrs Old)

If your child is under 10-years old and wants to practice basketball with a proper hoop, these are our top recommendations:

Lifetime Youth Basketball Hoop – Our Top Pick

The Lifetime Youth kids basketball hoop can be ordered in a choice of two colors – lime/black and red/black, making it a great choice for boys and girls who are picky about the color. It comes with a 32 inch youth-sized Impact backboard, a 15 inch folding rim and an all-weather resistant nylon net. 

The rust and weather resistant base of the Lifetime Youth kids basketball hoop measures 31.6” x 23” x 6.1”, and is designed to withstand the elements. This 10 gallon base can be filled with water or sand, and provides ample stability while being very portable. 

The height of the Lifetime Youth kids basketball hoop is adjustable between 5.5′ to 7.5′ in 6″ increments, making sure it can keep up with your child’s development.

In terms of craftsmanship, the Lifetime Youth kids basketball hoop system scores extra points thanks to its powder coated steel, high density polyethylene construction and fade resistant graphics. This Lifetime Youth kids basketball net is backed by an impressive 5 year warranty against any manufacturer defects, so you can be rest assured it will offer many seasons of fun. 

Key Features

  • 10 gallon base can be filled with water or sand 
  • Choice of two colors 
  • Base is rust and water resistant 
  • Height can be adjusted in 6” increments (5.5ft to 7.5ft)
  • 15 inch folding rim 
  • 5 year warranty 

Best Choice Youth Basketball Hoop

The Best Choice Youth Basketball Hoop is the best-selling portable basketball hoop on Amazon and is suitable for almost all ages until a regulation height rim is needed.,

Though slightly smaller than the Lifetime Youth basketball hoop, it’s sand or water filled base will be more than sturdy enough for most children. The backboard of this basketball hoop is made from high quality plastic, and is equipped with a high quality hoop and all-weather nylon net. 

This portable kids basketball hoop measures 29″(L) x 22″(W) x 76.5″-97.5″(H), and can be moved around easily thanks to its two wheels.

Key Features

  • Can be used indoors and outdoors 
  • Adjustable height (6.5ft to 8ft)
  • Backboard made from high quality plastic 
  • All weather nylon net 
  • Two durable wheels 
  • Base can be filled with water or sand 

Best Youth Basketball Hoops (10 and Up)

At grade 5, the recommended rim height is 9-foot, and by grade 6 it is recommended that children practice with regulation height 10-foot rims. That’s why at age, it’s advisable to purchase an adult-sized hoop.

Lifetime 90040 Height Adjustable Portable Basketball System

lifetime 90040 basketball hoop

The Lifetime 90040 is a great portable basketball hoop that adjusts from 7.5ft to 10ft in 6 inch increments. It’s a good choice for kids 10 and up who will quickly grow into the regulation rim height.

The 44″ polycarbonate backboard is large enough for rebounds and is perfect for practicing shots.

Setup is not complicated but will require two people. The 27-gallon base should be filled with water or sand to make sure the hoop is stable. Sand provides more stability as it will weigh the base down more, but water is easier to add and remove. This particular portable hoop does not feature wheels so if you plan on moving your hoop around often consider our other top portable basketball hoops.

Key Features

  • Large backboard
  • Extends from 7.5ft all the way to 10ft
  • 5-year manufacturer warranty

Best Over The Door Basketball Hoops

Over the door hoops, as the name would suggest, are mini hoops that can be mounted over your door. They are relatively easy to setup and hardly take up any space in the room.

They are a perfect addition to any kid’s room. However, they are recommended for slightly older children as the rim height will be fixed at however high your door is.

SKLZ Pro Mini Basketball Hoop with Ball – Our Top Pick

The SKLZ Pro Mini Basketball Hoop is in a league of its own, mostly notably due to its shatter proof backboard. In terms of construction, the backboard of the SKLZ Pro mounted kids basketball hoop is made from shatter resistant polycarbonate, and is topped with a protective foam padding that extends to the brackets which collectively minimize impact on the surface it is mounted to.

The SKLZ Pro kids basketball hoop is equipped with a spring action, breakaway steel rim that measures 9 inches in diameter. As a result, the rim will cushion any contact made with it, making it perfect for those kids who want to land the dunks they see on TV.

Included in the box is a 5 inch Pro mini rubber ball, which is designed for indoor environments and offers an authentic basketball experience. 

The SKLZ Pro Mini Basketball hoop can be setup anywhere – kids rooms, dorm rooms and even in the office. It measures 18 inches x 12 inches, and comes with foam padded door mounts to protect the paint on your doors. Tools needed to set it up in indoor spaces are also included.

Key Features

  • Large backboard
  • Polymer, shatter resistant backboard  
  • Foam padded door mounts prevent scuffing
  • Comes with 5 inch Pro ball 
  • Spring action, breakaway steel rim
  • Color options

Spalding Over The Door Unit

Established in 1876, Spalding is an all-American sporting goods company that is best known for producing world class basketballs. The Spalding Over the Door basketball hoop can be easily mounted over the door and is designed to offer tons of indoor basketball fun. 

This mounted indoor basketball hoop consists of a padded polycarbonate backboard that measures 18″ x 10. 5” and features a 9” steel breakaway rim. In terms of design, it’s a 1/4″ scale replica size of the actual NBA backboard, sporting the NBA logo.

The Spalding Over the Door kids basketball hoop comes with everything you need to set it up including padded door hooks that prevent scuffing and damage to your doorway. The package also includes a 5 inch rubber basketball so that you can start playing right away.

Key Features

  • 18″ x 10. 5″ polycarbonate made backboard 
  • 9 inch steel breakaway rim 
  • NBA logo and graphics on board and ball 
  • 5 inch rubber ball included 
  • Padded door hooks prevent scuffing 

Play Platoon Mini Basketball Hoop

Another hoop that is designed to be mounted over a door, the Play Platoon Mini Basketball hoop for kids comes with everything your child needs to get started. 

It features a shatter resistant 16” x 12.75” backboard that can withstand heavy blows and a highly durable steel rim.

The rim bounces back into place after every dunk, making it perfect for kids who want to dunk like their heroes. 

The box generously also includes two mini basketballs and a pump to ensure they stay inflated all year round.

This over the door kids basketball hoop is easy to setup with the included mounting hardware toolkit, and is backed by a 1 year manufacturer warranty and lifetime warranty when your purchase is registered online. 

Key Features

  • Great budget over the door hoop
  • Lightweight at just 3.42 lbs and easy to install 
  • Comes with mounting hardware 
  • Shatter resistant backboard 
  • Comes with 2 balls and pump 
  • 1 year and lifetime manufacturer warranty 

Best Basketball Hoop Toys

If you’re looking for hoops that offer something a bit different, here are our favorite ones:

VTech Smart Shots Sports Center

The VTech Smart Shots Sports Center is geared towards kids between 6 and 36 months of age, and can be used to play toddler basketball or toddler soccer. This battery operated toy is powered by 3 AA batteries and features an animated light to illuminate the scoreboard. 

The scoreboard produces entertaining sounds to make for a highly exciting game of basketball. The VTech Smart Shots Sports Center also features shape buttons that help your child develop early learning skills, such as identifying shapes, numbers and sounds. 

The box includes both a basketball and a soccer ball, but batteries must be purchased separately. 

Key Features

  • Animated LED scoreboard plays animations and keeps track of baskets
  • Plays more than 50 songs, phrases, sounds and melodies 
  • Switch things up by playing basketball and soccer
  • Dedicated shape buttons to introduce kids to numbers, shapes and sounds
  • Designed for toddlers between 6 months and 3 years old

Tuko Kids Basketball Hoop Arcade Game Toy

The Tuko Kids Basketball Hoop Arcade Game Toy brings the classic arcade basketball shooting game to your home.

Although it looks quite sophisticated, the system is actually incredibly easy to setup and doesn’t require any tools – just piece the various bits together.

The package includes a plastic backboard, netted barrier, three basketballs, a small air pump and a hoop. 

Key Features

  • Easy to assemble 
  • Heavy duty construction 
  • Comes with plastic backboard and 3 basketballs 

Final thoughts

A basketball hoop for your child is an excellent investment, because it not only gets them excited about basketball but keeps them active and encourages social and motor development. 

Choosing the right hoop should come down to a few key factors: price, age, location of placement and intended purpose.

Some hoops are designed purely for fun, while other youth-sized portable hoops are designed to allow for youth level basketball play. The latter is more suitable if you want your child to get an opportunity to practice basketball skills. 

Hopefully you’ll find a hoop that matches your need in this list of our recommendations. If you have any further questions about a hoop for your child, or have some other recommendations you’d like to share, please kindly leave a comment below.

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