Bowling Ball VS Basket Ball – Know The Differences

People who regularly watch sports for fun can clearly see the differences between a basketball and a bowling ball.

However, for people like me, who are not so sporting people, we need to dig a bit deeper to actually learn more about these two balls.

Because both of them are round and similar in shape, it is so obvious to think that they are of the same properties and materials.

However, they both serve different purposes hence making them entirely different from each other. In this article, we will talk about bowling ball vs basketball differences.

Introduction to Bowling Ball

Bowling Balls are used in a 10 pin shuffle bowling game. They are usually made of polyester or reactive resin and come in a diameter of 8.595 inches. They usually have three holes in them for proper gripping of two fingers and a thumb. In weight bowling balls are about 14 to 16 pounds. 

For other games like five-pin bowling, candlepin, and duckpin bowling, there are no holes in the ball. This is because they are smaller in size and weight. And they can easily fit in the size of your palm.   

To know more about different kinds of bowling balls visit

Introduction to Basketballs

Unlike Bowling games, Basketball is a team-player game. It needs 10 teammates (5 in each) to complete the game.

The outer layer of basketballs is made of leather or rubber. Basketballs are very light in weight. And they have a standard measure of weight and size according to the NBA (National Basketball Association).

The official weight and size of basketballs are 0.62Kg and 29.5 inches. Only a few have different measures other than NBA standards to match various leagues and ages.

Bowling Ball Vs Basketballs

bowling ball hitting pins directly

Here, we highlight some of the main differences between Bowling balls and basketballs. 

Properties And Weight

Basketballs have expandable internal rubber bladders. The bladder is covered with coats of fiber. Then there is the outer reach which is made of either leather or rubber or other synthetic materials.

Whereas, the core of bowling balls is made of complex chemical compounds. And they come in three different kinds – symmetrical, asymmetrical, and pancake. Each type determines how the ball would rotate and deliver.  

You can clearly see how differently each of the balls is made of. Due to their properties, both of the balls vary widely in weight and other characteristics. 

Bowling balls are heavier than basketballs. They need the directed physical force of a single man to be emphasized whereas basketballs can be easily operated just by the tips of the player’s fingers. Basketballs are not even close to 1kg in weight. 

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Density is the amount of mass distributed in a single volume of a product. It can be easily measured by dividing the mass of the products by their volume. 

Since bowling balls are heavier than baskets balls, it is obvious that bowling balls have a higher density than basketballs. 

Density is measured in gm/cm^3. For bowling balls, the accurate measure of density would range from 1.32g/cm^3 to 1.36g/cm^3. 

In the case of basketballs, the number is relatively small. 

You can carry out the experiment by yourself. It follows a very easy formula. All you need to do it, divide the mass of your basketball or bowling ball by its volume. 

Even if you find it hard to get the volume. You can simply follow the formula of Volume of a sphere, which is V= 4/3πr^3.

In simple terms, radius and mass are enough to determine the density of each type of ball.

Will Basketballs Float on Water?

a basketball floating on the water

Basketballs have a density lower than water. Therefore, the space occupied by basketballs is less than the size of it. Hence, it floats on water.

In the case of bowling balls, balls that are over 5.4kg will sink in water. Balls below 5.4 kg will float and balls that are accurately 5.4kg (almost the same density as water) can hover, float or sink based on their properties.


Basketballs are bouncier than bowling balls. The property of bounce is determined by the amount of pressurized air inside the product. Other factors also include gravity and Newtons’ 1st law of motion.

Basketballs have more compressed air inside than bowling balls. Hence, when hit to the ground, the energy of the pressurized air inside the basketball is passed back to the ball, hence making it bouncier.


10-pin bowling and basketball, these two sports are completely different from one another. Hence, the requirements are meant to be non-identical as well.

There are several other bowling balls vs basketball differences. However, we presented only a handful of features that are relevant to practical life and lessons.