Why Do Some Basketball Hoops Have Double Rims?

I remember the first time I played on a court with double-rimmed basketball hoops. Funnily enough, it was a pickup game in middle school during a recess period. I remember staring at the thick double rims and wondering what the deal was with them.

It’s not just playgrounds with blacktop asphalt that has double-rimmed basketball hoops either. Double-rimmed baskets are featured at different locations all over the world. What’s the purpose of having two rims? This article will explain all of this and more.

There are several distinct advantages that double-rimmed basketball hoops offer over single-rimmed ones. Here’s a couple of those benefits and a bit of information about why each one is important.

Benefits of Double Rims

1. Durability

The main reason people opt for a double rim instead of a single rim is because of durability. Double rim hoops last much longer than their single rim counterparts. Rec centers and city parks often install double-rimmed hoops because of their high level of durability.

If the basketball court is located outside, it makes even more sense to go with double-rimmed hoops because outdoor elements like rain and snow can cause wear and tear. Dunking and hanging on the rim also gradually wears down a basketball hoop so if there’s a lot of high flyers around a double rim will hold up better. Double rims are more suited to ferocious dunks and other extreme play.

2. Cost Savings

You may notice that double rim basketball hoops are installed at many parks or facilities that are owned by cities. This is because the double rim hoops provide these municipalities a huge amount of cost savings because of their high durability. 

Most cities and schools run on a limited amount of funds so the less they have to replace basketball rims the better. These cost savings may seem small but think about how many outdoor basketball courts there are in just one large city.

Do Double Rims Help Your Shot?

double rim

Yes, playing on double rims will improve your shooting skills because they aren’t as forgiving as single rims. The double rimmed hoops are much more firm than single rims so they require a more precise shot arc. Practicing a higher arc on your shot will make you a better shooter over the long haul.

Though single-rimmed hoops are easier to score on, they can lead to poor shooting form because of their high level of bounce and forgiveness. Hitting the rim on a lot of shots and still seeing them go in the basket can give the player a false sense of shooting confidence. Though some players have a tendency to give double-rimmed hoops a bad rap, they are clearly the better option when it comes to perfecting your shooting touch. 

Single Rimmed Hoops vs. Double Rimmed Hoops

single rim

Still not sure whether you want to practice on a single rim or a double rim? Here’s a brief list of the pros and cons for each type of basketball rim.

Single Rimmed Hoop Pros

  • Easier to Score On: This could make them a more viable option for younger kids and those just learning how to shoot a basketball
  • Less Frustration: Again, this is important for youngsters that are just starting to learn the game. You can always switch them over to a double rim at a later date
  • More Enjoyable: Let’s face it, more offense means more excitement

Single Rimmed Hoop Cons

  • False Sense of Confidence: Single rims can lead a player to believe that he’s a better shooter than he really is. The smaller thickness of the single rim means that players will get more favorable bounces
  • Less Durability: Single rims won’t last nearly as long as double rims, especially if the basketball court is outside or a lot of players dunk on it.
  • Higher Long Term Cost: Since single-rimmed hoops aren’t as durable, you’ll have to replace them more often. This will hurt your wallet or your school’s budget

Double Rimmed Hoop Pros

  • Improved Accuracy: The extra thickness of the double rim makes players shoot more accurately. This leads to a more precise overall shot and a greater chance of “nothing but net” results
  • Better Arc: A double rim forces a player to shoot with a higher amount of arc on their shots. Higher shots are less likely to be blocked by defenders. Most great shooters have a high amount of arc on their shots
  • More Durability: Double rims hold up incredibly well in poor weather conditions and can handle hard dunks
  • Saves Money: Though double rims may require a little more startup cost, they save money, in the long run, thanks to their higher level of durability. No more replacing rims each year

Double Rimmed Hoop Cons

  • More Difficult to Score: This can be tough to handle mentally for young players. It’s tough to see shot after shot not go in the basket
  • Optical Illusion: Double rims can appear to have a smaller diameter than the regulation size. In reality, double rimmed hoops are the exact same size as single rimmed hoops but the optical illusion can really mess with the minds of many players
  • Higher Upfront Cost: Because of their increased thickness, double rims are more expensive to initially buy than single rims. The added durability of double rims provides long-term cost savings, but it requires a higher investment on the front end.

Final Verdict: Which Type of Rim Should You Choose?

Choosing whether to practice on a single-rimmed or double-rimmed basketball hoop comes down to personal preference. Every player’s situation and goals are different so there’s no right or wrong answer. It also depends on which type of hoop you have access to.

For example, if you’re an experienced player who wants to become the best shooter you can be, opt for a double rim. If you have little kids who are just starting out in the game of basketball, a single rim may be the better choice. No matter what type of rim you choose, be sure to always practice hard and enjoy the game!

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Mike Noblin

Mike has been involved with basketball for over 30 years as a player, coach, and bettor. He has a degree in Sports Psychology and enjoys following both the NBA and College Basketball on a nightly basis.