How Can I Support my Child?

Welcome to Upward Basketball!
This season, your child will participate in a league that will redefine the word winner.

Today’s sports culture has created a “win at all cost” mentality.  However, in Upward, success is not based on wins and losses.  Coaches are trained that success is determined by how they convey salvation, character, and self-esteem to each child.  Upward defines winning as learning and/or teaching lessons in the game of life.

Be a Winning Parent!
As a parent, you play a very important role in building the self-esteem and character of your child and every child in the league.  Players look to their parents, coaches, and referees as models for sportsmanship, respect for authority, and positive attitudes.  Through your positive participation in this league, you can provide a lasting effect in these children that will live well beyond the end of the season.

What you can do to ensure a meaningful experience for your child:

  • Make sure your child arrives on time to practices and games.
  • During games, let the coach correct mistakes.  A player should learn to listen and respond to the coach during play.  Instructions coming from the spectators cause confusion to the players.
  • Cheer for both teams.  This gives each player twice the affirmation.
  • Support the volunteer referee with positive comments only.  They are giving their time to your child.
  • After the game, join your child’s team and cheer for each player as they receive their game-day stars.
  • After each practice, ask your child about the practice devotion and Scripture that was shared with him/her.
  • Find positive actions that took place during practices and games that you can praise your child for.

About Practices

  • Players will receive a player box at the first practice from their coach. The box will contain a game jersey, a t-shirt, a magnet, etc.
  • A one-hour practice each week. 
  • During each practice, a coach will share a short devotion to the players.
  • Teams will have the opportunity to learn Scripture verses together.

About Games

  • Every team will play one game a week.  Each game lasts about an hour.
  • A short devotion will be shared with spectators during half-time.
  • Following each game, teams and parents gather together as each player is awarded a star.

About the Stars

  • The BLUE star represents BEST EFFORT
  • The GOLD star represents BEST SPORTSMANSHIP
  • The GRAY star represents BEST OFFENSE
  • The RED star represents BEST DEFENSE
  • The WHITE star represents CHRISTLIKENESS

Rules Unique to Upward Basketball

Game Format
A unique element of this league is the game format:

  • Referees lead both teams in prayer at center court before every game.
  • No division standings are maintained in the K-4th grade divisions.  Such standings add unnecessary pressure and intensity.
  • Referees will call and explain all violations.
  • All coaches will adhere to the substitution system.

The substitution system is designed to provide every player equal opportunity for improvement.  The substitution system ensures the following:

  • Every child will play at least half of the game.
  • No child will sit out back-to-back six minute segments.
  • The starting lineup changes every game.
  • In most cases, each child will play against someone of equal ability.
  • Coaches are not open to making unfair substitutions or being accused of such actions.
  • Coaches are free from monitoring playing time for each player.
  • Playing time for all players is virtually even over the course of the season.