The Basketball Federation of India (BFI) along with the International Basketball Association (FIBA) will conduct FIBA Coaching Certification Course Level 2 in Chandigarh from December 3 to 8.
Another Level 2 course will be conducted in Hyderabad (Telangana) from December 10 to 15. After completion of the five-day Level 1 FIBA Coaching Certificate courses in Lucknow (from November 18 to 22) and Bengaluru (November 25 to 29), the last Level I course will be hosted in Kolkata from December 16 to 20.
Each clinic is a five-day course of two sessions per day, consisting of theoretical as well as practical sessions and also includes a written and practical evaluation. The Level 2 FIBA Coaching Certification Courses will be a six-day course of 2 sessions per day.
These courses are being held in line with BFI and FIBA’s long-term coaching development strategy. Hence, all current and aspiring coaches in India are actively interested as it helps in improving their chances to coach the National team along with developing the game in India. FIBA Instructor Mr. Nelson G Isley is the instructor at these courses. He has over 40 years of international basketball experience as a player, coach and instructor. This is the US born Isley’s fifth time in India. His previous stints in India were for the conduct of 14 similar clinics.
Compared to previous years, this time around, the emphasis is on practical demonstration as against theory. Coaches themselves are being made to showcase their skills on the court. “There’s one thing certain about life, that if you can’t do something [yourself] you can’t teach it,” said Mr Isley prior to the Saturday afternoon clinic at the Kanteerava Indoor Stadium in Bengaluru.
Elaborating further, he said, “Indian coaches are very interested in learning… and have been very respectful… The hope is that eventually not only will you get Indian players that are ‘exportable’ so to speak… but that India can become an exporter of coaches.” Isley confirmed that India, along with China, Nigeria, South Africa and Brazil, are priority countries for FIBA because of their sizeable populations and high number of talented athletes.
Speaking about the growing prominence of the Indian basketball programme he said, “There’s no doubt about it… progress has been made here… Now India is not an ‘easy game’. Other countries know now that when they play [India] they have to respect them and perform at a high level or they will get beaten.”
Participating coaches in the ongoing Bengaluru clinic include coaches from different parts of Karnataka, as well as the neighbouring states of Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra and Goa, and even one coach from Sri Lanka.
“I have already done my diploma course from National Institute of Sports, Patiala. But when I heard that a knowledgeable person like Mr Isley is going to guide and examine us, I registered for the course,” said Mr Anpur Raviprakash, a leading grassroots coach from Karnataka.
“A certification from here is equal to an international certification. It helps us apply for coaching jobs in good schools,” said Prem Kumar, a young coach from Bhavan’s Vidya Mandir in Kochi, Kerala. “Unlike other coaching sessions where players have to showcase the drills, the key difference here is that we coaches have to perform the drills ourselves. So it is a great way to internalize the lessons.”
“Level 1 course is meant for coaching children between the years of 8 to 14. Coach Nelson has taught us so many things, and what makes him remarkable is that he is a great fundamental coach as well as a successful coach at the international level,” said Rameshkumar Durairaju, an international referee who is doubles up as a basketball coach at the Indus International School in Bengaluru.
“I don’t think my future is in the corporate field. I love what I do and am confident of clearing the written exam,” said 22-year-old Vinay Venkatesh, probably the youngest participant in the clinic. “I think this is an excellent initiative. Coach Isley has said that he wants as many as 10000 FIBA certified coaches in India. So hopefully this is just the start.”
“I think this FIBA Level 1 is a course every coach must do. I am very thankful to BFI for giving me this opportunity,” said Ransin Ginige, the lone coach from Sri Lanka at the clinic.
Previous years’ clinics were conducted in Mumbai (Level 1), Ranchi (Level 1), Delhi (Level 1 & 2), Chennai (Level 1 & 2), Hyderabad (Level 1), Chandigarh (Level 1), Ahmedabad (Level 1), Assam (Level 1), Kochi (Level 1), Ludhiana (Level 1), Patna (Level 1), and Pune (Level 1). Not including the coaches who are expected to clear the 2015 clinics, there are currently 212 Level 1 and 27 Level 2 certified coaches in the country.