Basketball Hoop Components – Things to Consider Before Buying

Basketball hoop consists of several components that vary in size, length, material, or capacity, depending on the functionalities.

It’s better to get a clear picture of the construction before spending your money on buying one.

Good for you!

In this write-up, I’m going to discuss the basketball hoop construction elaborately so that you know the system’s nitty-gritty entirely.

In general, the basketball goal can be divided into these major parts –

  • Backboard.

  • Rim/net.

  • Support Pole.

  • Height Adjustment.

  • Base.

Without any further ado, let’s dig a little deeper. Shall we?


The backboard of a basketball hoop (applicable for both portable basketball systems and in-ground basketball hoops) is the part that holds the rim (net).

In other words, it’s the part of the system where the ball hits and bounces back if someone misses putting the ball in the net.

The size and shape of the backboard, and the material it boasts vary from hoop to hoop.

Let’s discuss in brief about backboard sizes first.

Backboard Sizes

When it’s about the size, we mostly refer to the width of the backboard.

The width of the backboard varies depending on the level of players who are going to use that hoop for playing.

It ranges from 34” to 72” where 34” is the backboard width for junior basketball systems and the 72” is for the most professional players.

Most of the backyard or driveway hoop boasts 54” to 60” backboards.

The bigger the size is, the more it’s going to help the top-level players.

Backboard Shape

The backboard shape mostly varies in two different forms – rectangular, and fan-shaped.

The rectangular shape is the most common one these days as it gives more consistency during the play. It looks better than its fan-shaped counterparts too.

Backboard Materials

Backboard material plays the significant role in deciding the playing experience. It can be made of different materials (I’m going to talk about them in a moment), and they determine the durability of the backboard and how well the ball will rebound if you miss the shot to put in the net.

Interestingly, the more durable the material is, the less it helps to rebound.

Let’s get to know the different backboard materials.

  • Tempered glass.

  • Acrylic.

  • Polycarbonate.

  • Composite.

Tempered Glass

Tempered glass is the most advanced and rebounds friendly backboard material. Most of the high-end systems come with a tempered glass featured backboard.

Nonetheless, they are the most costly ones too. In terms of durability, tempered glass backboards can break easily if the system falls.

As the glass board is shatterproof, it won’t break into pieces, by the way.

Tempered glass boards don’t lose their color, either.


The acrylic backboard is probably the most common material to make driveway basketball goals. It’s cost-effective, durable, and provides a satisfactory amount of rebound.

Visually acrylic boards don’t have too many differences compared to the tempered glass ones. Nonetheless, these boards weigh less than the tempered glass boards.


Polycarbonate is more durable than acrylic. But the ball doesn’t get an excellent rebound from this material.

If you plan to buy a goal for recreational matches only, a polycarbonate made backboard is quite ok. On the contrary, it’s not a good option for competitive games.


Composite or plastic is used to make the cheapest hoops. These backboards are only suitable for kids playing. Any youth or adults won’t feel it convenient to play with this kind of backboard.


Rim is the heart of the basketball system. Rim or net is where you aim to put the ball in to get a score.

The rim consists of a net (preferably an all-weather net), spring, and the container (round-shaped).

The quality of the rim is crucial here. It should be rust-free, the spring quality should be good.

Some rims don’t feature spring. We call it rigid.

Generally, a net can be of two types –

  • Standard rim/rigid.

  • Breakaway.

Standard Rim/Rigid

Standard rims are used to make the budget hoops that are mostly used by the kids or youths.

When it’s about dunking, rigid rims are NOT the suitable ones as they don’t feature any spring in it.

Breakaway Rim

Breakaway rims do have spring attached, and they can take the load of the ball and dunkers. As a result, the backboard lasts longer in this case.

The breakaway rim is classified into two types –

  • Compression Breakaway – Here, the springs are exposed to the weather. That’s why they are prone to rust.

  • Pro-style Compression Breakaway – Here, the springs are covered; hence they don’t rust easily. These rims offer the highest quality and used to make high-end hoops.

Support Pole

The support pole plays a significant role in giving the system the amount of stability.

Mostly, a support pole is classified based on the number of pieces it contains. It can be either – three-piece pole, two-piece pole, and one piece.

Three-piece support poles give the least stability and are used to make the budget hoops.

Two-piece support poles give the medium level of stability and are used to make the middle-tier hoops.

One-piece support poles give the highest stability and are used to make high-end goals.

Height Adjustment

All the modern-day basketball hoops (portable and permanent) feature a height adjustment mechanism.

In most cases, you can adjust the height from 7.5’ to 10’ in 6” increments.

The way to adjust the height varies from hoop to hoop, from manufacturer to manufacturer.

However, the most common ones are –

  • Telescopic pole.

  • Broomstick height adjustment.

  • Crank handle.

  • Trigger handle.

  • Power lift height adjustment, etc.


The base is applicable only for the portable basketball systems. This is the place where you put water or sand to fill it and make it stable.

The base size varies depending on the overall basketball system size. It ranges from 10-gallon to 55-gallons.

Final Words

This is it.

I’m sure you are quite clear about the different parts of a basketball system and how they affect the quality, durability, and performance.

I’ve tried to cover everything you need to know about a basketball goal.

Did I miss anything? Comment below to get in touch.