How to Deflate a Soccer Ball [Fastest Method]

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So you want to take a bit of air out of your over-inflated soccer ball? Or maybe you just want to flatten the ball so it’s easier to put away?

Well, before you try anything too crazy, we’ve got the perfect solution for you. In this article, we’ll show you how to deflate a soccer ball in seconds – the easy way.

How to deflate a soccer ball

The best way is to use a soccer ball pump. Football pumps have a needle that can be used to both inflate and deflate the ball. When you want to let the air out, simply insert the needle into the valve and wait until no more air escapes.

How does a soccer ball valve work?

A soccer ball valve is located on one end of the ball and is used to inflate or deflate the ball.

The valve consists of two parts: the base and the needle.

The base is threaded so it can be screwed into the ball. The needle has a slanted end that fits into the base.

When you want to add air to the ball, you unscrew the base and insert the needle into the hole in the base.

The air pressure in the ball forces the needle into the hole in the base, creating a seal. Once the needle is inserted, you screw the base back onto the ball.

To deflate the soccer ball, you unscrew the base, remove the needle, and let all of the air out. The valve makes it easy to keep your ball at just the right inflation level for maximum performance.

how to deflate a football or soccer ball

How to deflate a soccer ball with a needle.

Deflating a soccer ball without a proper pump may seem like a difficult task, but it’s actually quite easy.

All you need is a strong needle and a few minutes of time. First, locate the small hole in the ball. If you can’t find it, gently squeeze the ball until you feel where the air is coming out.

Then, insert the needle into the hole and push down until you hear the air hissing out. Continue to hold the needle until the ball is completely deflated. 

You may need to put something protective over the end of the needle so you can push it in without hurting your fingers! If your nan’s thimble isn’t to hand, try goalie gloves!


Moisten the needle with some water. This helps the needle to slide in easier and avoids damaging the valve on your soccer ball when you insert it. 

How to deflate a soccer ball without a needle.

If you don’t have a needle or a soccer ball pump to hand, don’t worry. There’s still an easy way to let the air out of your ball.

All you need is a paperclip (or something similar). Straighten out the paperclip and then bend one end so it’s slightly hooked.

Insert the paperclip into the valve and push it until you feel air start to escape. Continue turning until the ball is fully deflated. 

Watch and learn: How to deflate a soccer ball step-by-step.

Here’s a great video that shows you exactly what to do to let air out of your ball the easy way.

The final score

And there you have it – three easy ways to deflate a soccer ball!

So next time your ball is feeling a bit too firm, remember these simple tips to let some air out fast and easily. Good luck!

This article was written by

  • Anna Adams, Creative Director & Content Lead

    Hi there! I'm Anna Adams, your go-to source for all things women's soccer. I've been crazy about soccer for over 20 years, ever since I was kicking a ball around with my brothers as a kid. I've turned my passion into a career where I get to share all the cool stuff about soccer with you. As a content lead, I've had the awesome opportunity to work with various sports brands and publications. Whether it's the latest gear, pro tips, or just some cool soccer trivia, I'm all about making soccer ac...