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When you travel a lot to play volleyball it can be cumbersome to carry your ball. Whether you want to protect it from the weather or you just need free hands, having a good backpack with the space to accommodate your volleyball is a great way to solve this and keep your gear in good condition while traveling.
So, what is the best volleyball backpack with a ball compartment? The best volleyball backpack with a ball compartment is the Under Armor Undeniable 3.0. The challenge in finding a good bag to carry your ball (and other equipment) is the durability, capacity, and comfort offered when you use it, and the Undeniable has fulfilled these challenges the best out of any bag I tested.
Not using a bag to carry your ball in may result in losing it, either to weather damage or accident. Thus, it’s best to carry it in a bag. I’ve tested all manners of bags throughout my volleyball career, and I’ve widled down my list to the best 3.
In this article, I’ll discuss:
- The 3 three best volleyball bags with ball pockets
- What to look for beyond simply ‘more space’
- How to choose different bags for different players (beach, school, indoor)
4 Factors to Consider When Buying a Volleyball Bag With Ball Compartment
Space is the biggest factor to consider, and the most obvious.
There’s no point buying a bag unless it has enough room to fit your ball, or one that holds five or six times what you need.
The best options to consider are those with a clearly defined “ball compartment” and will keep your ball safe and secure whilst not rattling around annoyingly as you walk.
Durability is important because this is a working bag: you’re going to be throwing equipment inside, ripping the zippers open to grab your jersey, and hucking it across the bench when you’re running late.
This bag will come with you to practice for years and regularly be kicked around the floor. In short – it’s going to be damaged. And bags with thin, mesh netting pockets are always the first to go.
If you want to spend less money and have a bag that lasts, choose one that uses thicker materials and no netting (unless it’s a vent).
If you’re not comfortable, then there’s no reason to buy a bag. I believe that a good backpack should have good straps and padding, and if you’re going to be wearing it for hours or taking it across country, the bag should be the last thing you worry about.
Additionally, it shouldn’t bulge in strange places or have a strange weight distribution, as this can hurt your back.
Consider the purpose of your bag and what you’ll be using it for: are you an indoor player, beach player, or wanting a combination for school and sport?
Each of these have different needs, and will affect the compartment layout and whether any extra are needed.
For instance, beach players want a light, sand-proof bag with lots of compartment for water and sunscreen. Indoor players may need a pocket for their shoes, while school-centric athletes need several separate compartments for their books and ball.
Whatever your purpose, take the time to determine your needs.
3 Best Volleyball Bags and Backpacks with Ball Pockets
The 3 best volleyball bags and backpacks with ball pockets are:
- Under Armor Undeniable 3.0 – Best All-Around
- Athletico Youth Sport Bag – Best Three-in-One
- Copaya Beach Volleyball Compartment Backpack BV900 – Best For Beach/Lightweight
It has large, multi-use compartments, is very durable, and extremely comfortable.Check Amazon for Pricing
The best overall volleyball bag with a ball pocket is the Under Armor Undeniable 3.0 because it has large, multi-use compartments, is very durable, and extremely comfortable.
The Undeniable has two large pockets: one loaded from the front and the other with top loader access, either of which can be used to carry your volleyball. This flexibility is great because you have the option to throw your ball in on top of your warmup, snacks, or whatever else in the main compartment, or can keep separate when sandy or wet in the front pocket. You can even store your shoes!
I travel internationally a lot, so I like my bags to have a few extra features so I can stay organized. The Undeniable not only has two side pockets for water bottles, but a well-padded computer pouch and top compartment for passports, phone, or other small items.
Even compared to “normal” backpacks, the Undeniable is extremely comfortable. With padding inside the bag to protect your items, ergonomic padded back panel, and foam-reinforced shoulder straps, traveling with this bag felt great. The shoulder straps are also extra-long (16”) to adjust, which makes it great for tall players like me.
Under Armor’s “Storm” technology finish completes the bag, making it tear-proof and weather-proof, and feels extremely durable for what we volleyball players need. The bottom also includes an abrasion-resistant panel and will survive being dropped and tossed across the ground.
With a great size and perfect weight, the Undeniable is by far my favorite bag I’ve ever used for volleyball, and I would highly recommend this for any players looking for an alternative to the classic gym bag.
- Organized compartments
- Looks great
- Bit pricey
The best bag with a ball pocket for beach volleyball is the Copaya Beach Volleyball Compartment Backpack BV900.
Editor Note: This bag is extremely hard to find. The only place that sells it is a UK retailer called Decathlon. If you’re located in the US, buying from this retailer will increase shipping times, but it’s highly worth it (as you’ll read below)
The Copaya BV900 is a classic example of players who saw a need for change and did it right. This bag is specifically designed for the beach with a single zipped opening to reveal segmented interior, an isothermal insulated pocket to store your water bottle in, and a sand drainage system that prevents sand entering the main pocket.
It’s important to note that this bag does not have an internal ball pocket, but an external compartment with harness. This is ideal for beach however, as it won’t bring the sand in your bag, the weather doesn’t typically get bad enough to weather-proof the ball, and the four-point harness keeps it securely in place.
Lightweight but comfortable with a four-padded back section and an adjustable check strap, this bag is the definition of “built for purpose” and easily dominates the competition for beach bags.
- Adjustable Harness
- No internal ball pocket
- Not available on Amazon
It has three, sizeable pockets to keep your work, ball, and shoes separate from each other whilst remaining in the same bag.New: $35.00
The best utility volleyball bag with a ball pocket is the Athletico Youth Sport Bag because it has three, sizeable pockets to keep your work, ball, and shoes separate from each other whilst remaining in the same bag.
The greatest thing about this bag is its utility. I have three younger sisters and a brother, so I know firsthand the struggle of grabbing everything the school wants you to bring: your backpack, gym back, lunchbox, and computer bag (if your school gives their students laptops to work on). This is a lot to carry, and adding art projects or a volleyball to the mix can make it nearly impossible.
The Athletico Sport Bag not only has a large main compartment with a 7-pocket organizer, but a shoe compartment and a ventilated ball pocket as well. These can easily be used to carry other items instead, but reducing the number of bags is at the center of this product.
This bag has padded shoulder straps and water-resistant, durable fabric to protect your books and balls from the weather. For parents’ peace of mind, it also is made with a reflective safety accent on the back, to protect your child against the direction they can’t see (behind them).
Honestly, I believe this is a great option for students just getting into volleyball and trying to juggle other mandates and responsibilities at the same time. While not as durable or volleyball-exclusive as the others on this list, due to the needs of budding players I believe this belongs alongside them.
- 7 Pocket Organizer
- Separate, spacious compartments
- Reflective Safety Accents
- Great utility
- Not as durable
- Can be heavy
Features Buyers Should Keep in Mind
The features you should look for when buying a bag with ball pockets are:
- Extra Features
Look for good materials with weatherproofing properties such as polyester on the outside, with metal zippers and a durable frame. The backpack should have padding on the shoulder straps and back panel, while excellent options will also have padded pockets and abrasion-resistant bottoms.
Consider your needs as a player and what else you may need the bag for. Will you be carrying just the ball? Then you can buy a very small, lightweight bag to hold it in, and need not consider anything else. If you want to carry a computer, towels, practice clothes, or more, you will need a larger product with more compartments.
Most bags will provide some extra features, whether that’s isothermal cooling for water bottles, ventilation, or anchor points to attach additional things such as knee pads, external ball sleeves, or even to hang your coat from. Ideally, choose a bag that provides the best extra features for you.
Looking for volleyball bags that don’t have a ball compartment? Check out my article: Best Volleyball Bags & Backpacks.
For an excellent volleyball bag with a ball pocket, I recommend the Under Armor Undeniable 3.0. It’s spacious, durable, and comfortable to travel with, and will last players a long time. Suitable for travel whether that’s between home and practice or internationally, it is an excellent option for players of all levels, and one which meets the needs of players aptly across the board.
While the Copaya BV900 has more impressive features and is my optimal choice for beach volleyball, the Undeniable is larger and more well-rounded with an interior ball compartment, offering players more flexibility in the long run.
About The Author
Ailan Samuel is a writer and athlete who has played volleyball at the university, club, and national level since 2012. He has competed successfully in both beach and indoor competitions, resulting in four silver and two gold medals, and was awarded the Half-Blue while playing in Scotland. He received his MA in English and Medieval History from the University of St Andrews, Scotland, and is currently studying for his MA in Publishing and Creative Writing at Bournemouth University.