Basketball Jersey Rules

Basketball jersey uniform, rules | The Blog Art

Basketball is one of the most popular sports in the world. But the thing is that basketball is not just a sport. Basketball offers holistic development and teaches life-long lessons to individuals. It has numerous advantages, with the obvious ones being health related. Basketball not only keeps the person playing healthy and fit but it also teaches numerous life skills such as hard work, team work, perseverance and a lot of other things that come in handy at every stage in life. All this makes basketball a game that is loved and adores by millions of people around the globe. Now as basketball is played in different places and at different levels under different federations and associations so their set of rules different from one another. Heck the uniform rules differ as well. Different organizations have various, set of rules for the basketball jersey, basketball shorts, extra jewelry, the shoes and etc. In this article we’ll be discussing about them so that you know the right way to decorate your team basketball jersey wherever you play. So here goes nothing.


The 4 major basketball federations in the world are:

  1. NBA (National Basketball Association)
  2. WNBA (Women’s National Basketball Association)
  3. NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association)
  4. NFHS (National Federation of State High School Associations)
  5. FIBA (Federation Internationale de Basketball Amateur)


NCAA Basketball Jersey Rules

  • All members should have the same basketball team jerseys and basketball team shorts.
  • The two teams playing against each other should be wearing contrasting colors to one another. The home team has to wear light colors whereas the away team wears has to wear dark. The rule can be modified with the consent of the teams. So the home may wear a dark color and the away team could wear a light color.
  • There is some area on the back and front of a basketball jersey which is called a neutral zone. This means that your jerseys has to be plain in that area.
  • Front neutral zone: Measured from the shoulder panel the area must be at least 12 inches wide and measure 6 inches in each direction from the center of the neckline.
  • Back neutral zone: Measured from the shoulder panel the area must be at least 12 inches wide and measure 6 inches in each direction from the center of the neckline.
  • Things allowed on the back within the neutral zone:
  • The name of the player or the institution the team is representing. It should be written horizontally, and each letter should be at least one inch away from the number that would be written below.
  • Only modern number font can be used. The number on the back should be at least 6 inches and can have a colored border or outline which should not be thicker than ½ an inch.
  • Number that are allowed to be used are: 00, 0-5, 10-15, 20-25, 30-35, 40-45, 50-55. No two players of the same team can use the same number.
  • Team logo should be placed on the left chest of the jersey.
  • No letters, numbers, or decorations are allowed between the number and the name.
  • Outside the neutral zone, there aren’t any restrictions.
  • Basketball jerseys should always be tucked in the basketball shorts.
  • The undershirt or compression wear should be of the same colors the jersey.
  • The undershirts or the inner wear should be plain and cannot contain any logos or decorations.
  • Lower inner wear should not drop below the basketball shorts and again they should be of the same color as the shorts.
  • Headbands and wristbands must be made from a soft material.
  • The headbands and wristbands should be of a solid color and should match the color of the jersey.
  • The headband or wristbands cannot be wider than 2 inches.
  • The logo of the manufacturer can be displayed only on the basketball shorts
  • Wash instructions for the basketball team uniform can be located on the bottom of the jerseys torso (2 inches from the bottom).
  • The label should not be larger than 2-1/4 inches.


NBA and WNBA Basketball Jersey Rules

The National Basketball Association (NBA) is the men’s professional basketball league in North America, founded in 1946, and consists of 30 teams from the US and Canada.

  • All players must wear the same basketball jersey and basketball shorts.
  • Outerwear has to be taken off while playing.
  • The coaches are requires to wear proper suits.
  • The players have to have their basketball jersey tucked in their basketball shorts at all times.
  • A player jerseys must be numbered on the back and the front and should be in a contrasting color (from the jersey).
  • Numbering on the back and front should not have dimensions less than 3/4 inches in width, and 6 inches in height.
  • The player’s name must be on the back of the jersey and the font size cannot be larger than 2 inches.
  • The home team wears a light-colored basketball team uniform whereas the away team usually wear dark colors.
  • Only wearing headbands and wristbands is allowed. The headbands and wristbands should be made out of a soft material and should match the color of the basketball team uniform and cannot have a thickness of more than 4 inches for the wristbands and 2 inches for the headbands.
  • The basketball shorts should be till the knee length .
  • Players are allowed to wear shoes from the manufacturer of their choice. Advertising practices on the shoes is allowed.
  • The NBA does not limit the length on the stocking length.

The WNBA and the NBA rules are the same. The NCAA, NFHS and FIBA rules are the same.
The jersey numbers allowed are a little different to each other. The numbers allowed for each of the federations are:

Federation Name Numbers Allowed
NBA All numbers are allowed
WNBA 00, 0 – 15
NCAA 00, 0 – 5, 10 – 15, 20 – 25, 30 – 35, 40 – 45, 50 – 55
NFHS 00, 0 – 5, 10 – 15, 20 – 25, 30 – 35, 40 – 45, 50 – 55
FIBA 4 – 15


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