Learning All About Lacrosse

5 Tips For Playing Basketball At Night

by Ashley Kelley

It can be frustrating when you want to play basketball but the only time available is after sunset. Fortunately, there are ways to play after dark. 

1. Avoid Noise Complaints

Noise can be the biggest issue with a nighttime game. If you are practicing and shooting on your own, most of the noise will be from dribbling and it won't be too intrusive. For an actual game, though, voices can carry and bother the neighbors. Be aware of local noise ordinances and try to wrap up your game before they go into effect each evening. It may also be a good idea to keep the trash-talking on the down-low once the sun sets.

2. Keep Lighting Low

Don't light up your court like it's daytime, as the bright lights can shine into your neighbor's windows and lead to complaints. Instead, opt for some low lighting that is ground-based and lights up the court and the player's legs. Visibility may not be as great, but your eyes will adjust. Low lighting should allow you to see any dangerous tripping hazards without annoying your neighbors. 

3. Get the Right Ball

Your standard basketball simply won't cut it when it comes to night games. Instead, invest in a glow-in-the-dark basketball. This makes it easy to follow the ball as you shoot and pass, all without the need for intrusively bright overhead lighting. Even better, you can easily find the ball if a shot bounces off the rim and into the neighbor's bushes.

4. Use Nylon Netting

Another common noise issue is old chain-style netting on the hoop. The jingle and shake of the chain can feel triumphant when you make your shot, but it may disturb those who are trying to relax in the quiet of their homes. Either take off the net completely or swap it out for a silent nylon net. You can always put the chain back up for daytime play.

5. Light the Hoop

Yet another way to minimize lighting needs is to light the hoop. There are light-up hoops available that have integrated low lighting installed to make them more visible at night. You can also get glow-in-the-dark hoops, sometimes as a combo package with a glow-in-the-dark basketball. If you don't want to purchase a new hoop, there are hoop lights available that attach to the backboard. 

Contact a sporting goods dealer to find the gear you need for a nighttime pickup game of basketball.