To get the most out of your football game, it's important to have the right equipment.
When choosing a football, consider who will be using it. For young children, mini footballs (size 6) are a popular option. They fit small hands and are often made of foam so that they're lightweight and won't injure a young child. For older children, junior (size 7) or youth (size 8) footballs are appropriate. High school and college football teams use official NCAA footballs, which are a little smaller and slightly more rounded than official NFL balls, making them easier to throw and catch. For adults, either NCAA or NFL footballs are appropriate. Both can be made of synthetic materials or leather.
In addition to a ball, it's important to have the right safety gear, including helmets, mouth guards, face guards and pads. Before shopping for a football helmet, determine your size by wrapping a measuring tape around your head about one inch above your eyebrows. Then, determine what level of face mask protection you need. Helmets that offer only oral protection give players a wide field of view. Running backs and tight ends can benefit from helmets that offer both oral and jaw protection. For linemen and other players who often experience hard hits, helmets with nose, jaw and oral protection are best.
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