To begin with, start feeling welcome already. We want you! We don't care how much basketball you played before, how tall you are or how fit you are. We will teach you all that. Well, all apart from the getting taller bit. What we ARE looking for is a positive attitude and a thirst to improve continuously.
So, here is what you do:
1. Check how old you are. Simply put, if you are thinking of joining an U12s squad on 1st September, you had better not be 12 on the 31st of August. Similarly, if you are thinking of joining an U16s squad on 1st September, you had better not be 16 on the 31st of August of the same year. If in doubt, ask at email@example.com.
2. Check where your squad trains. Now that you know which squad/team you are in, go back to the HOME page and click on the TEAMS option. Then click on the picture of your squad and the practice session times should be there, including the venues.
3. Just turn up for a free first practice session to meet your team mates, your friendly coaches and the even friendlier team manager. One of them will give you all the information you need, including competitions, fees, holidays and more. If you are still apprehensive about it all and you want a more gentle introduction to basketball life, come along to a Youth Wednesday session.
4. Fill in the Registration Form. If you and your parents are happy with what you saw and experienced on your first practice session, go to the JOINING option on the HOME page, fill in and submit the online Registration Form.
5. Set up the monthly payments. You will then receive a welcoming email from your team manager and the club's bank details so that you can set up a standing order with your bank to pay the monthly installment.
6. Receive your shooting shirt. At the next practice session, you will be presented with your free shooting shirt. Yours to keep and wear with pride until you grow out of it!
YOU ARE NOW A BLACKHAWK!
Well, it depends. Read on...
1. Full membership. Go to the HOME page and select the JOINING option. There you will see a table with all the annual costs depending on which squad you are in. The full membership allows you to participate in all practice sessions, games, tournaments and Youth Wednesday, plus you get your shooting shirt for free. With full membership, your £50 registration fee is a one-off payment for as long as you stay with the Youth section. The subscription fees (paid by bank standing order) are payable every season.
2. Youth Wednesday membership. There are three options here, so please visit the dedicated page for all the gory details.
3. Bespoke membership. Very rarely, there is a need for a membership that is tailored to some special circumstances. These can be discussed individually with the Heads of the Boys or Girls sections.
For any queries on this, please email us on firstname.lastname@example.org
Our TOP PRIORITY AS COACHES is to create happy memories for our players. Now, we appreciate that 'happy memories' is a very subjective thing but, as a general rule, players will tell you if they are not happy or you will never see them again.
Players appreciate it a lot when their coaches are both knowledgeable and experienced. That is a no-brainer. For extra credibility points, you may want to throw in a video from Steph Currie's outrageous down-town 3-pointer or the top-10 dunks in the NBA. Or whatever you think your players will appreciate.
Attending camps is an important part of your development as players. This is because, in a very short time frame, we cram a lot of basketball that has to do with individual strength & conditioning, scoring moves, ball-handling, shooting - you name it.
You can now find out when and where this season's camp will be held and register your interest online HERE.
If you are 45 or older and would like to sweat buckets by walking fast or take life a bit easier in a most friendly environment, look no further than the Woking Leisure Centre.
The sessions are held every Monday (7pm-8pm) and are run by a 62-year old, L3 coach carrying a number of sporting injuries. As far as injuries go, he is not dissimilar to the players who attend on a regular basis, featuring knee guards, taped-up ankles, elbow sleeves and more exotic exoskeletons. Some of us also carry a spare tyre for good measure, which we pretend we have lost entirely after taking 4,000 steps in one hour and consequently feel entitled to a well-earned curry afterwards. We do come back next Monday of course, spare tyres and all.
May I also mention that not all of us are former European champions or NBA ring holders but we muddle through as best we can. Oh, and we don't keep score.
Jokes aside, our main objective is to get some aerobic exercise playing the sport we love, without getting injured.
Does this sound like something you would like to do?
Just pay your £3 at Reception, save your receipt to give to the coach and make your way down to join us on the basketball court. We'll be there waiting for you.
Many of our players live in Woking or go to school here, but we also have boys and girls coming to play from Guildford, Cobham, Camberley, and plenty of other nearby towns.
Height can be an advantage, but basketball is a game for people of all sizes. Shorter players have achieved great success at all levels of the game.
For example, Muggsy Bogues stood at only 5ft 3in (160cm) but had a record-breaking 14 year career in the NBA. Meanwhile, 5ft 9in Nate Robinson is the only player to have won the NBA Slam Dunk Contest three times.
We’ve got boys and girls both above and below the average heights for their age, all enjoying the sport and thriving. Strength, skill, speed, agility, dedication, and intelligence are all highly useful attributes, and a short person who has these qualities in spades will present a challenge to any opposition player regardless of their height.
Basketball has many iconic looks that junior players love to emulate. So if they want to come to training wearing a full replica kit from their favourite NBA team and the latest Nike Air Jordans, that's fine.
But a t-shirt, lightweight shorts, socks, and non-marking trainers are perfectly fine. Something they'll be comfortable running, jumping, and playing in.
If they're looking to play regularly, then you may want to look at basketball shoes. These may have additional ankle support and are designed for powerful, agile movement.
For games or tournaments we will usually provide a top and shorts, although many players arrive with some athletic wear under a tracksuit to warm up in before changing. If it's your first time playing and you aren't sure then please feel free to reach out to your team's manager or coach.
Horace Grant won four NBA Championships while famously wearing prescriptive goggles for his eyesight, so the answer is a resounding YES.
If your child would prefer not to wear sports goggles, then many players wear contact lenses while playing.
Wherever you can fit a hoop and some space around it.
Generally, our official training sessions, matches, and tournaments are played indoors at schools, colleges, or leisure centres. Professional matches tend to take place at leisure centres and arenas, also indoor venues.
As parents, this means no standing in the rain, no muddy clothes to wash, and you will usually be able to find a seat.
However, there are many outdoor public courts available for you to take your child for some practice. If possible, we recommend one with a three point line and a free throw line marked out.
We have, in Covid times, conducted supervised sessions outdoors at schools or in parks. During lockdowns we have also hosted virtual fitness classes, skills sessions, and tactical talks to help keep our players engaged and motivated during what has been a tough time for many.
Please see the specific team's page to see where your training sessions take place, or contact the team's coach.
As a club, it's crucial that we are all on the same page when it comes to what is expected of each other. We have therefore set out clear codes of conduct expected of both players and coaches.
As a parent, we want you to have full confidence in the high standards that we set for our coaches. In our code of conduct for coaches, we lay out these standards. These aren't just for basketball, but how we present ourselves, the example we set to our players, and the ethos we hold that guides how we develop each individual that joins our club.
We have also set out our code of conduct for players, which will help our players on the court and off it. Adopting the mindset laid out in this code will help you enjoy the sport, as well as improve at it.
The safeguarding of our players is of prime importance to us, with all coaches and managers being DBS checked and taking safeguarding courses before being allowed to undertake their duties. Our full safeguarding policy can be found here, we encourage the parents to read through it so that they can be happy in the knowledge that their children are safe with us.