How to Choose the Right Basketball Rim

    Posted by Ryan Wilby

    Apr 21, 2016 4:00:00 AM


    Selecting a basketball rim for your organization might seem like a simple enough task and for most purchasers, it definitely can be a painless process.  In some cases however, there are definite challenges and factors to take into consideration when you begin shopping for the right rim, including the many configurations to choose from.

    The expected use and location are perhaps the two biggest factors to consider and can literally make or break your basketball program, whether it is academic, recreational or professional.

    The only true constant factor with regards to basketball rims is their size.  They all measure 18” in diameter and measure consistently from all point-to-point measurements that cross the exact centre of the hoop.  In addition to the diameter of the hoop, there should be 6 inches of separation from the ring to the basket and when attached to a backboard, should have no separation.

    There are two main types of basketball rims: rigid or stationary rims and breakaway rims.

    Just as their names suggest, each operates in a different manner and serves two separate groups of prospective users. 

    Stationary or rigid basketball rims are tough and adequately secured to the backboard and do not offer much movement, if any when the ball or a player hits the rim.  These rims are usually priced lower than their breakaway counterparts and are often used in outdoor and un-monitored locations for both added durability and to prevent the risk of theft.


    Image:  Stationary or rigid basketball rim

    Breakaway goals were designed after the advent of dunking in the sport of basketball.  As large players began to dunk basketballs theatrically and hang on the rim for a period of time, this lead to both the rim and backboard in need of repair or replacement. 

    These rims have come a long way since their inception in the late 1970’s and are the most popular configuration on the market today.  The breakaway rim is able to take the brutal force of a human dunking on the rim, bouncing back into place immediately after the tension is released.  In addition to saving millions of dollars in repairs and replacement, these rims are credited with preventing years of player injury as well.


    Image:  Breakaway basketball rim

    Factors to Consider

    As we stated above, you will want to consider the environment in which your basketball rim will be used.  Outdoor environments usually call for a tough and durable rim that can withstand the elements and unsupervised use.  These cases most always call for a stationary rim such as our BUGG or front and rear-mounted stationary rims.

    Level of play is another factor facility operators and buyers will want to consider.  Recreational leagues and K-12 academic athletics do not usually opt for the same rims used at the collegiate or professional levels.  That being said, institutions that expect heavy use on their equipment are always advised to strongly consider a breakaway rim.  There are a number of options to choose from and some breakaway rims are best suited to certain backboards and mounting configurations.

    Our expert team of basketball sales professionals are backed with 35+ years of experience with basketball rims and equipment and can quickly recommend the right product for each and every unique program or situation.



    Topics: Basketball Equipment


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