Joseph works as an editor in one of the magazines dedicated to video games. Here, at RecRoomPick, he’s given the opportunity to enjoy the reverse of the medal – the no less engaging world of offline games.
Ryan knows everything when it comes to gaming, both online and offline. Since his early years he’s been in love with arcades, air hockey, and foosball. Finally, he’s given the opportunity to share his knowledge and opinion on the hobby of his life (and even get paid for it!).
Last updated: February 09, 2021
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Have you wondered what makes up a top-notch tetherball set? The chances are that you haven’t, and this might be evident in your purchase decisions. You might have also been disappointed in a purchase you assumed to be a high-quality set. As it stands, high ratings don’t always translate into the best tetherball sets. Consequently, you need to investigate some of the top options and find out why they get their high scores.
Features are a crucial way to grade different products, and that applies to tetherball sets as well. Some critical features include materials, accessories, and height of the set. This information is crucial in determining who can and cannot use the device. Also, whether the tool is portable or not will likely affect how you can use the set. This is all information we have provided below alongside products we consider among the best tetherball sets. After reading this, you should have the easiest of times choosing products that will continue to satisfy your requirements long after they have been purchased.
Our team chose the Park & Sun Sports Permanent Outdoor Tetherball Set as the best option out of all products we reviewed. You probably want a durable set, and in this area, the product delivers. The pole is made out of 18-gauge steel, which should hold its form even with kids knocking the ball around.
Of note is that there are two components to the pole. Once the two are assembled, the tool should measure 10’3″. Also, a 12” ground sleeve is provided with the purchase. Once you have installed this correctly, you will be able to take the pole in and out as you wish. This makes it easier to maintain since you don’t have to leave it out in unfavorable weather conditions.
Remember, the pole is made of steel. However, it is weather-resistant and should offer some resilience to said rust due to weather conditions. Additionally, this element of the purchase is 1-5/8” in diameter.
An internal cord connector is as well provided by the manufacturer so you can easily attach and detach the cord carrying the ball. You should as well remember that the cord in question is 7’ in length. It is also 6mm in diameter and should have an easy time holding the ball up. Additionally, the cable is made of nylon.
When it comes to the ball, there are a couple of things to take note of as well. Construction, for instance, is one of the major ones. It is padded with soft materials, and users should not find it hard to hit the ball. Also, it comes with a hook whose job is to ensure it is firmly attached to the cord.
What we liked:
The ball is made with soft materials to prevent hurting the user’s hands
The pole is weather resistant
Comes with a pump
A durable cord is provided
The two-piece design and ground sleeve means you can take easily take down the dress for storage
What could be better:
This product is not portable since you would have to dig up the ground sleeve as well to move it to a different location
Due to its two-piece design, the pole is a bit shaky
Mold and mildew can grow on the ball if left exposed to moisture and other elements
The first portable set on our list is the Lifetime 90029 Portable tetherball System. One crucial highlight of the product is that it doesn’t need a cement base. This is because it comes with its HDPE base attached. Of course, you can easily set it up anywhere at any time. Storage will as well likely not present any problems as a result.
Attached to the base is a round 96-inch pole that is 2” in diameter. Also, it is made of steel. Due to the thickness, the pole is quite a strong component of the set. Another thing to note is that it is powder-coated. Consequently, you might get away with leaving it out in wet and dry weather without any consequences.
Another significant component of the set is the nylon cord. With its 72” size, it is not much smaller than the length of the pole. Also, due to the proximity of the hanging ball to the ground, children who are five years or older can play. It can even be used by teenagers who are much stronger without any risk of damage.
At the end of the nylon cord is, of course, an 8-inch ball. It is soft enough for children to play without hurting themselves while at the same time, being tough enough for adults as well. Also, if you want the set to be more stable, you can add sand or water to the base for some extra weight.
Additionally, you might have to top up air pressure now and then while playing tetherball. The manufacturer has you covered by providing a pump and needle with the purchase. Another thing that you might appreciate from the manufacturer is the 5-year warranty.
What we liked:
A 5-year warranty is provided
A pump and needle are provided with the purchase to maintain suitable air pressure levels in the ball
The ball features a soft exterior
The pole is weather-resistant
Product is easily movable
What could be better:
The hole on the base that you can use to fill the bottom with sand is quite small and hence filling it with sand takes long
Another product that might have you and your children out in the backyard for hours on end is the Baden Champions Series Tetherball Set. The pole on this product is much easier to store since it can be broken down into three independent pieces. When put together, the pole reaches a maximum of 10’5”.
Additionally, for a softer experience, the ball in the set is made from 100% rubber. A ground sleeve is as well included. This can be permanently placed in the ground to provide support for the white-steel pole. It allows for the detachable parts of the pole to be taken out and put back in at will.
Also, there is a powder coat on the pole whose primary function is to keep out the various weather elements. This way, even if the pole is made of steel, it is unlikely that it will rust due to being left out in the open. However, for that bit of extra safety, you should endeavor to store it indoors as much as possible when it is not in use.
The ball pump and needle are as well crucial elements of the purchase. They ensure the ball is full of air and ready to be used at any time. Additionally, the ball is as well attached to a nylon rope. This is then attached to the eyebolt on top of the pole.
What we liked:
Easy to put together
Comes with a ball pump and needle
What could be better:
Due to the three-piece design, the pole is a little flimsy
The Champion Sports Portable Tetherball Set is an option that you can easily carry to the beach or wherever you intend to have fun. Just like the editor’s choice, it comes with a 12” ground sleeve. If you want the tetherball set to stay in your backyard, you can use cement to fix the ground sleeve in your play area permanently. If you want to carry it to different places, we would advise against using cement.
To make it easier to carry, it can be broken down into four pieces. All these fit into the carrying case, which also features a strap. You can as well use this component for neat storage in your garage.
The ball pump and needle components ensure that the rubber ball doesn’t stay deflated for long. Also, the presence of a weatherproof cord cannot be forgotten. It is durable and able to withstand all weather conditions just in case you forget to put it back in the garage.
Another home tetherball set option is the BSN Outdoor Tetherball Pole. It is designed for permanent installation and hence has no ground sleeve or base. That being said, the pole does consist of two components that you will have to bring together. These pieces are made of 3/8″ galvanized steel. If the customer reviews are anything to go by, the durability of the pole is commendable.
Because the pole needs to be installed 2 ft into the ground, there is no chance of it tipping over. Also, since the total pole height is 12 ft, you are left with 10 ft of the pole above ground. This should be enough for your children to play with.
A rope and ball are included in the purchase as well. This means you have almost everything you need to start teaching your kids tetherball. One thing that might disappoint a few buyers is the lack of a ball pump and needle. You will likely need to purchase these accessories so that you can make the most use of the set.
There is as well the top eye that allows you to attach the rope and the ball easily.
What we liked:
A durable pole that is made from galvanized steel
Easy to attach the ball
Stable once installed
Tetherball and rope are included in the purchase
What could be better:
Some people might not like the fact that it needs to be permanently installed in one place.
The set does not come with a pump and needle for inflating the ball
Things to Consider
If you’re buying a tetherball set for the first time, you may need someone to tell you what you need to look for. However, there is a second option, which is to look at the buying guide below for that information.
What is tetherball and how to play it
Tetherball is a late two-player 19th-century game that involves a pole, rope, and a ball. The pole is stabilized by being put in the ground, and a rope is attached to the top. Also, the ball is attached to the end of that rope and stays in a suspended state.
Positioning involves two players who are opposite each other with the pole in the middle. Additionally, the goal is to have the rope wrap around the pole until the ball can no longer move. Seeing as though the players are opposite each other, one forces the ball to move clockwise while the other moves it counterclockwise. As such, the players end up working against each other.
Features to consider when choosing a tetherball set
A difference in features is to be expected where tetherball sets are concerned. You should use these differences to decide whether a specific set is the one for you or not. For a better understanding of the same, we have broken down the tetherball set features below.
Portable or permanent?
Most people who want one of these sets wish to install it in their backyard and let their kids enjoy it for years to come. If you are one of these buying a permanent tetherball set shouldn’t be a problem. On the other hand, those who like to go camping and spend their time out of the house could benefit from having a portable set. This way, they can let their children play tetherball as they set up a campfire, a tent, or prepare a family activity. They can even join the fun.
Also, if the pole doesn’t have a sturdy base, the movement of the ball would force it to wobble and fall. This is why a lot of people permanently attach these products to the ground using cement.
Where you don’t have such an option, such as with the Lifetime 90029 Portable Tetherball System, you can get away with adding sand or water to the round base. Of course, the extra weight that comes with these materials will serve to beef up the sturdiness of the product as your children play.
Pole material and height
It is also no secret that if the pole material is flimsy, it won’t last long. It will likely break under the pressure and weight of the ball being knocked around the whole day. Also, the taller it is, the more likely it is to break. However, the manufacturer can offset this risk by using thicker materials. This is why the Lifetime 90029 Portable Tetherball System is one of the most durable options with its 2” diameter pole.
The ball is another critical component of the set. You want materials that are tough so that they can be able to take a beating day in day out. Additionally, you want a soft ball so that you and your children don’t hurt your hands as you play. This is one of the reasons the Park & Sun Sports Permanent Outdoor Tetherball Set is so popular.
How does the rope attach to the pole and the ball? You need to ensure these connections are reliable. Additionally, it would benefit you if they were easy to use. One example is the use of hooks or eyebolts.
If the rope snaps mid-game, it will ruin all the fun. This could be avoided by using a weatherproof and durable cable if you are going to leave it outdoors. If you are going to return it to storage, you don’t need the weatherproof part. However, make sure you have a rope that is strong enough to withstand the test of time.
How easy it is to assemble
Most of the options above are relatively easy to assemble. For permanent options, you don’t have to worry about it that much since you only need to put them together once. Those that are portable like the Champion Sports Portable Tetherball Set need to be assembled over and over again. It would thus work in your favor to have them be easy to assemble as it would significantly reduce the time you need to spend putting them together.
Also, while the main features are discussed above, make sure you gather all the information available about potential purchases. You might find out some interesting facts and benefits associated with them. An example is a 5-year warranty that comes with the Lifetime 90029 Portable Tetherball System. Other features are likely to come up as well that would give certain products an edge over the competition.
Tetherball is a lot of fun to play despite not being certified as a sport. This being the case, it would be great for your children to play. However, if you can find sets with poles that are long enough, even adults can join in on the fun.
This is generally a very safe game. However, you can take a few measures to ensure no unfortunate accidents happen. If yours is a home-based set that doesn’t get a lot of use, you can inspect it every few years. Make sure it is stable and that the rope is in good condition.
If you use it in a commercial setting where it experiences a lot more traffic, inspect it more often, such as at intervals of two to four months.
Wrapping It Up
Our team settled on the Park & Sun Sports Permanent Outdoor Tetherball Set as the favorite purchase. The value of this purchase is tremendous and will allow your children to enjoy the sport. Except for a bit of shakiness, everything else about the set, including the ball, seems top-notch.
Another purchase we would recommend is the Lifetime 90029 Portable Tetherball System. The warranty makes a good case for the purchase of the set. Also, one cannot complain about how easy it is to move the set to different locations in your backyard. The durability of this set also seems a lot better than most of the competition.
The last option in our top three picks is the Baden Champions Series Tetherball Set. You won’t have an easier time while storing your tetherball set than you will with this purchase. This as well is likely to increase the lifespan of the purchase so your kids can enjoy it for longer.
Also, while we do hold these products in high regard, let our opinions not dissuade you from making your own purchase decisions. After all, the point of this write-up is to put you in a position that allows you to make an informed purchase.