The mission of the Mendham Patriots Basketball Program is to promote the recreational benefits and emphasize the educational values of basketball while putting winning and losing in an age-appropriate perspective. Mastery of the fundamental skills and the fun of playing are essential to the development of a lifelong interest in basketball. Most importantly, we encourage every child to have fun and come back to participate in the Mendham Patriots Basketball Program the following year.
In order to achieve these goals we have adopted the following objectives:
- Provide an enjoyable introduction and experience
- Provide a healthy environment for fun and learning
- Teach the basic fundamental skills
- Stress participation, fun and skill development
- Develop communication at the player’s level of learning
- Foster teamwork and sportsmanship
- Teach lifelong skills
- Build confidence with positive reinforcement
Clinic is the introductory level for all players interested in learning the game. Coaches will focus on basic core skills of the game, such as dribbling, passing, and shooting. Shorter back boards and rims (8' instead of 10') are used at this level to make shooting easier. Practice formats include various drills and instruction sessions. The goal is to educate young players on the basics of the game and create a fun environment that is limited in competition.
The transition program offers continued instruction for young players, but also introduces simple games to help them understand the rules and dynamics of the sport. Games are intramural in nature, with limited score keeping and no league standings. Referees are encouraged to be instructional so players can learn the rules of the game. The objective of the program is to prepare young basketball players for the rec level, where games and competition are more of the focus.
The primary focus of the Recreational Program is on teaching and player development without eliminating the competitive nature of any sport. Emphasis will be placed on instructing each player in the fundamentals of basketball – defense, offense, shooting, passing, and moving without the ball. The goal is to develop the participants basketball sense and learn team play without the distraction that is often associated with an overemphasis on winning. Specifically, minimum play requirements provide that all players must play at least half the game.
We recognize that some players will progress through their basketball careers and develop an interest in playing a higher level of basketball in a more competitive environment. Therefore, in order to accommodate the needs of these players (without losing sight of the above stated objectives) we have established a Travel Program. In these programs a stronger emphasis is placed on more advanced team play, higher level of skill development, a higher commitment from each player and the value of competing to win.