It is time to fly into the past and learn about the origins of the best sport in the world: basketball.
For all those who are curious and want to know where the famous game of canasta and ball comes from, we share the story with you.
Although we can find references to basketball in the times of the Greeks or the Aztecs, the beginning of this modern game has its origins in an American school in 1891. The promoter of the game was a certain James Naismith, a sports instructor at the YMCA (Young Men’s Christian Association) in Springfield. James specified the thirteen basic rules of basketball, which are still in effect. However, some modifications have been made to adapt them to the new times in which the game is mainly based on the speed with which points are scored and the spectacular way of scoring them.
Because of the long winters in Springfield, and the need to keep his students entertained and in good physical condition, James considered creating a new game that could be played indoors and in small spaces. After spending a few months studying other existing sports and adopting the most attractive aspects of each, Naismith was able to establish a series of requirements that this new sport should have:
- Affinity for the ball.
- Easy to learn
- That could be played on any terrain
- Permanent goal attack
- That there was a balance between attack and defense
- It wasn’t an aggressive sport
So it was that little by little and after several trials, James finally created the sport known as Basketball (basketball in English or basketball) basket comes from the word cesta or canasta in English and ball is a ball, the image of the game was simple; it would be played only with the hands and would aim to put the ball in a basket or basket where its name comes from.
The basic principles created by James were:
- The ball will be spherical and can be thrown with one or two hands regardless of direction.
- Any player can place himself on the field of play where he likes and at any time.
- You cannot hold the ball and run with it.
- The two teams will play together on the field, but contact between the players is forbidden. (It is not a violent sport)
- The goal should be high, horizontal and small so that more use is made of dexterity than power
- The teams would be made up of nine players
The first official basketball game was played in the YMCA gymnasium on January 20, 1892 and since the ball was not yet created specifically for basketball as we all know it, it was played with a football. In 1894 the free throw was established; in 1897 five players per team were regulated and in 1904 the size of the court was defined.
Women’s basketball began in 1892 at Smith University when Senda Berenson, a physical education teacher, made some changes to James’ rules to accommodate women. The first official game was played in the United States in 1893.
Basketball spread quickly throughout the United States and Canada, and was promoted to Olympic status in 1936. The sport is regulated worldwide by the International Amateur Basketball Federation (FIBA) and championships are held from time to time.
Basketball has remained the same since its inception, where more than strong physical contact, each player’s technique and skill, dexterity and mental agility prevail. Basketball has become one of the most followed sports in the world.
Browse through our notes to learn about the history of the NBA, how it was born and how it grew to become the basketball monster we know today.
History of Basketball board
Since its creation in 1891, basketball has undergone several changes that helped make it one of the most popular sports in the world today. As we have mentioned on several occasions, basketball is very noble and can be played with just a ball and a hoop, just as James Naismith planned when he hung a couple of peach baskets in the YMCA gym. Interestingly, one of the things that evolved the least over time was the hoop, since it is kept at the same distance from its birth, 10 ft/305cm, the only thing that was added was a board to complement the experience.
The story goes that the basketball board emerged a couple of years after its birth and contrary to what is thought, it was more so that the ball would not hit the spectators sitting in the stands behind the basket. The first basketball boards were made of wood or chicken wire. Some time later, the board was stuck to the wall, but there were some live ones who took advantage and gained momentum by stepping on the wall when it was time to jump. So the board was put 4 ft/121 cm from the end line and today it is 157 cm from the end line.
Once the distance problem was solved, another difficulty arose. The wooden board prevented the view of the people in the back. In 1910 the first glass panels appeared and years later they were briefly banned, until in 1919 the glass panel was popularized by Indiana University. Today, these panels are the ones that are professionally handled and have a dimension of 105 cms high by 180 cms long with a thickness of 30mm, these according to the official parameters of FIBA.