Water polo balls need to be fully inflated before they are ready for use in the water. Water polo balls have a small, one-way valve installed that makes it easy to inflate balls at any time. Inflating a water polo ball is easy, and can be done with a standard bicycle or hand pump, and an inflating needle. Electric inflators can also be used. Water polo balls should be inflated to 13-14 psi (pounds per square inch) for men and 12-13 psi for women. Follow the below steps to properly inflate a water polo ball.
Steps to Inflate a Water Polo Ball
- Find the small inflating hole in the ball.
- Hold the ball between your knees or feet, or enlist a friend to hold the ball while you pump it up.
- Securely attach the inflating needle to the end of the pump hose.
- Moisten the tip of an inflating needle (this will make it easier to remove later), and insert it into the inflating hole.
- Pump up the ball until it has reached the correct pressure.
- Remove the needle by pulling it straight out of the hole. Pulling the needle out sideways can break the needle off inside the ball. If the needle does break, gently use a pair of pliers to remove the needle fragments. If it comes to this, you should wear eye protection.
Check the Pressure Regularly
It is important to keep water polo balls at the correct air pressure. Not only is it possible to overinflate a water polo ball, which can cause it to split — even explode — but an underinflated ball will not perform properly in the water. Over time, water polo balls slowly lose air, so check their pressure every few months and inflate as necessary. With the right equipment and by following the above steps, inflating and maintaining proper air pressure in a water polo ball will be a quick and easy task.