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People + Passion + Basketball = #anythingispossible

 


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The game was a success from the time that the first ball was tossed up.

— James Naismith, Educator, Physician, Chaplain, Coach & Inventor of Basketball

How it all began…

James Naismith created the game of “Basket-Ball” on December 21, 1891 at a YMCA in Springfield, MA. Naismith’s boss, Dr. Luther Gulick, asked him to invent a new indoor game that could keep track athletes in shape during the cold New England winter.  

Naismith sought a game that could involve many players. He made attempts at modified forms of football, soccer and lacrosse with no success. His fourth attempt at Gulick’s challenge involved the methodical study of existing team games. 

His first generalization was that any new game must have a ball. He settled on the soccer ball after eliminating smaller balls that were difficult to handle or needed additional equipment for use.  The soccer ball would be the official ball for 38 years until 1929. 

Next, he eliminated tackling to reduce the potential injuries that could occur indoors on wooden floors. Finally, he concluded that the game must have an objective or goal. He decided on a goal that required players to throw the ball in an arc, which limited rough play as a valuable tactic. 

The first basketball hoops were peach baskets with the bottom intact. This is why the sport was called, “Basket Ball”. Officials used a stick to get the ball out after each basket. The first string nets were used in the early 1900s and it wasn’t until the 1950s that the orange ball became the norm. Early basketballs were actually brown in color.

Today, basketball is over 125 years old and has spread to every continent with more than 450 Million people playing the sport. Basketball is played at every level from casual and recreational to highly competitive. What started as a way to keep a couple local athletes in shape would grow to become an international phenomenon, thus proving that #anythingispossible.