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In-Ground VS Portable Basketball Hoops: Choose the Best One


Basketball is the most enjoyable and challenging sport loved by all people all over the world. Whether you want to add a recreation centre to your yard or driveway or your kids aspire to become future NBA champions, it might be the perfect time to shop for a basketball hoop. Although, it is an investment of money, time and work so you should take it seriously. There are two options: In-ground vs Portable Basketball Hoops come with potential advantages and drawbacks depending on your budget and needs.

We are here to break down the key differences between portable vs in-ground basketball hoops helping to make an informed decision. In this article, you can read our well-researched and comprehensive comparison of these hoops.

What are In-Ground Hoops?

These hoops are designed to be installed on the court permanently and are commonly used on street courts and stadiums. Direct burial poles are used for such types of hoop and are set for a lifetime.

Portable Hoops

Portable hoops are those that use water or sand-filled anchors and can be moved easily from one place to another. For such type of hoop, you have to buy a Semi-Portable basketball system able to transport it.

In-Ground VS Portable Basketball Hoops


How to Determine the Right Basketball Hoop?

It is a difficult task to choose: an inground basketball vs portable hoop. You can consider the following things before buying.

  • Whether you reserved an area for the sport or not
  • Who is going to use it: a dunking player or a kid
  • Paramount safety concerns
  • Affordability and Quality

Key Differences: In-Ground Basketball Hoop vs Portable Hoops 

Both hoops have advantages and disadvantages as well. Analyze the key differences provided in the section below to choose a basketball hoop.

Purchasing Cost

The first thing to consider before buying a hoop is the cost depending upon size and scope. Portable hoops range from $ 100 to several hundred dollars while ground costs hundreds to thousands of $.

Installation Process

The installation of in-ground hoops can be a big task requiring concrete work in a 3-foot deep and wide hole, mostly done by professional installers. On the other hand, portable hoops can be installed easily and quickly by filling the ground with sand or water for stability.

Safety Precautions

In-ground hoops are safe, reduce the risk of tipping over and are made of quality materials. Portable hoops have a high risk of tipping, causing injury and damaging property if it is installed on uneven ground.

Portability Considerations

There is no need to protect in-ground basketball hoops from poor weather as they can stand up better in all-weather situations like heavy winds. On the contrary,  you have to transfer your portable hoop indoors to protect it.

Quality Assessment

In-ground hoops are made of high-quality materials like tempered glass backboards, heavy springs, and thick steel and have powder-coated steel poles to ensure durability. Conversely, portable hoops are not long-lasting and prone to getting rusted and blended. []

Home Resale Value

You should always keep in mind the idea of the resale value of the things when buying. A portable hoop is convenient for the short term while an in-ground hoop enhances long-term investment in your property.

Protection Against Theft

The in-ground hoops are protected against theft as you use bolts to install them so it is not possible to steal them. However, portable hoops can be targeted easily so you have to lock them and secure them against a tree.

Adjustability and Longevity

Portable hoops are for players aspiring to focus on every aspect of the game as they offer adjustable height mechanisms allowing adjustment of the rim. While in-ground goals last for years with minimum maintenance.

Comparison Chart

See the comparison chart highlighting every aspect of different types of basketball hoops: in-ground or portable basketball goals.

Aspect In-ground Basketball Hoops Portable Basketball Hoops
Installation Permanent, requires digging and concrete pouring Temporary, no digging or concrete needed
Stability High stability, anchored into the ground Moderate stability, can be weighted down with sand or water
Mobility Not mobile, fixed in one location Highly mobile, can be moved easily
Durability Very durable, designed for long-term outdoor use Moderately durable, may wear down faster with frequent moving
Cost Higher initial cost due to installation Lower initial cost, but may require more maintenance over time
Adjustability Some models offer height adjustment Most models offer height adjustment
Space Requirements Requires dedicated space and clearance around the hoop Requires less space and can be stored when not in use
Aesthetics Blends into outdoor environment, may enhance property value May not enhance property value, can be visually intrusive
Weather Resistance Highly resistant to weather elements Moderate resistance to weather, may need to be stored indoors during extreme conditions
Accessibility Always available for use once installed Can be moved to different locations for accessibility
Performance Provides a solid playing experience similar to professional courts Performance can vary depending on stability and build quality

This chart will help you compare the key aspects of in-ground and portable basketball hoops to determine which option best suits your needs.



  • In Ground Hoop:   in-ground using an anchor system
  • Portable Hoop: Installation is not required.


  • In Ground Hoop: Fixed
  • Portable Hoop: Easily moveable


  • In Ground Hoop: Provide maximum stability
  • Portable Hoop: filled with either water or sand

Ability to Play

  • In Ground Hoop: experience equivalent to the professional tournaments such as the NBA and NCAA
  • Portable Hoop: Not suitable for aggressive players

Suitable for

  • In Ground Hoop: professional tournaments
  • Portable Hoop: Job holders

An overview: Advantages of in-ground and Portable hoops

Below are the benefits of in-ground and Portable hoops in bullet points.

In-ground basketball Goal

  • Durability and stability
  • More professional appearance
  • Long-term investment

Portable Basketball Goal

  • Convenient relocation
  • Quick Setup
  • More budget-friendly


Roof Mounted or Wall Mounted Hoop?

It can be mounted on a roof or wall. It has the largest motion.

What is the difference between an In-Ground vs bolt-down basketball hoop?

An in-ground hoop is installed directly into the ground while a bolt-down hoop is installed on a concrete surface with bolts.

Can you put a portable goal on the ground?

Yes, it is technically possible to install such types of hoops into the ground.

Should I get an in-ground basketball hoop?

Yes, if you love aggressive play then it is the best choice for you.

Final Thoughts

In a nutshell, in-ground hoops are made for safety, permanency and high quality. On the other hand, a Moveable hoop can be more convenient but it does not last long.  So, if you are looking to choose between a ground vs a portable basketball hoop choose one that has high-quality materials and stability and that is an in-ground hoop. I hope that we have guided you in choosing a suitable hoop through a simplified and comprehensive comparison.

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