History of the Soccer Ball

The soccer ball’s history is as rich, protracted and varied as the game it serves. Although their evolution can be traced to ancient history and cultures, the history dates back to more recent times – the 19th century. Indeed, soccer is well over a century old and the modern, high-tech ball has come a very long way from the irregular-shaped pig’s bladder.

Before the English Football Association prescribed qualities and measurements for the football, game-play was subject to the vagaries of the size and shape of a pig’s bladder. Naturally, this presented problems as players found it difficult to judge the bounce and direction of the bladder. In addition, footballs made with animal bladders tended to deteriorate rapidly.

In 1855, Charles Goodyear developed the first rubber football. A process known as vulcanization (the process of converting rubber into more durable materials) helped to accelerate the development of the soccer ball. Vulcanized rubber was able to withstand pressure and avoid deformity.

In 1862, further development took place with H. Lindon’s innovation – the inflatable rubber bladder. Ten years later, the English FA introduced specifications concerning the size of the ball (27 inches – 28 inches in circumference) and its weight (13 ounces – 15 ounces). FA approved soccer balls also had an outer case of leather. Lindon’s inflatable rubber bladder provided the template that the game would use for decades.

In the early 20th century, the balls were made with more durable rubber. These balls were encased in tanned leather panels that were stitched together. The leather casing of the balls made heading difficult, especially as the leather was very absorbent. This posed a problem with balls that were made with genuine leather. Manufacturers attempted to mitigate absorption by coating leather exteriors in synthetic paints and other non-porous materials.

The year 1950 yielded another significant change – the white ball. This was made by white-washing the leather. The aim of using the white ball was to increase the ball’s visibility for the benefit of spectators. Sometimes, when watching old clips, one might notice that orange balls were also used in the 50s. These were also created to improve visibility in snowy conditions.

Prior to the 1970s, there was also another significant development in soccer ball design – the Buckminster ball. This was a change from the balls made with panels of leather stitched together. Instead of panels, hexagons were stitched together. This design became a very popular design that is still utilized by modern soccer ball manufacturers.

The 1960s saw the introduction of synthetic soccer balls. These balls were designed with synthetic leather, but they did not replace leather balls until the 1980s. The last time that a leather ball was used in the FIFA World Cup was in Spain 1982 (Adidas’ Tango Espana).

The Azteca by Adidas was the first synthetic ball used in a FIFA World Cup. Modern soccer balls used a combination of synthetic leather and polystyrene foam, which improved their touch, acceleration and velocity. Major soccer ball manufacturers are continuing to experiment with their designs in an effort to improve goal-scoring and offensive strategies.

The modern soccer ball is highly evolved in terms of materials and design. Other than that, the ball specifications have not changed a lot over the decades. The modern soccer ball is lighter, non-absorbent, more durable, and provides better game-play through hi-tech design.


Eiffel Tower – A Brief History and Overview of Its 120 Year History

The Eiffel Tower today remains one of the most popular attractions of all time in Paris let alone Europe. In fact, since its opening, it is estimated that over a quarter of a billion people have viewed the tower. It has by far been one of the most historic buildings in the world and has landed its name on the 7 Wonders of the World.

The Eiffel Tower was first designed for the Paris Exposition in which many buildings were planned to be built all over Paris. Of the many designs Gustave Eiffel’s design was chosen out of the many. It took nearly 2 years and 2 months of construction but the Eiffel Tower was built in 1899. It was built of mainly or iron. After 20 years of its existence, the Eiffel Tower was being pushed to be demolished for scrap metal for many people.

However, to luck of Paris today it was kept. The main reason for keeping the tower was because it was thought that its radio pole on the top of the building would be helpful and useful for many future scientific endeavors. In fact, many scientific works were conducted on the Eiffel Tower. Temperature, Pressure and Radio Transmission were among the most prominent. During World War II, after the Germans invaded France, they hung the German flag atop the Eiffel Tower as a symbol of France’s subjugation. This was among the most embarrassing moments in French history. The Eiffel Tower since that day has been maintained as a radio tower and site for many tourists around the world. Its golden night display has made the Eiffel Tower at night own of the most beautiful attractions in the world. It and night’s illuminating golden glow has been a source of beauty in the Paris sky for many years. Today, the Eiffel Tower is one of the most visited sites in all of France and Europe and looks to stay that way for years to come.