Invention of the game

James Naismith left many diaries and interviews that explain how and when he created basketball. Massachusetts had cold winters, and people wanted a game that could be played inside.

Naismith was a Canadian teacher, born in Almonte, Ontario on the 16th of November, 1861. Naismith was an orphan from early in his life, and his uncle led him to study Hebraism and philosophy, to train to become a priest.

He graduated from McGill University, Montreal, in 1887 (it was the first graduation of eleven), but at the college he discovered sports: he played in the rugby team for eight years, even when he studied at the Presbyterian College in Montreal. But he dropped out in 1890, to become a teacher at the International Young Men’s Christian Association Training School in Springfield, Massachusetts.

There, physical educator Luther Gulick asked him to invent a new indoor game, which could be played during the cold winter. He also made it for a physical education class to play.[He started work on it in December 1891. He wrote that he took some ideas from other sports: when he was young, he played with his friends a game called "Duck on a Rock." In this game, one boy guarded his “duck” from the stones of the others; and the fun began as the boys gathered their stray shots.

Later on, Naismith would go on to McGill University in Montreal and would later become McGill University's Athletic Director. He would subsequently move on to YMCA Training School in Springfield, Massachusetts and in 1891, the game of basketball began.  Given the cold Massachusetts winters, Naismith needed to find a recreational activity that could be played indoors and he preferred a sport that would develop skill and one that was not exclusively relying on strength. The first game was played with two peach baskets for goals and a soccer ball.

Further to his credit, Naismith became a medical doctor specializing in sports physiology and a Presbyterian minister. Naismith was able to see his beloved sport of basketball, gain acceptance in numerous countries through the YMCA since 1893. As well, the sport of basketball was brought forth at the Berlin Olympics in 1936. As we speak, the game of basketball has become a very popular professional sport.