When Was Basketball Invented?
Basketball was invented in 1891 by Dr. James A. Naismith, a Canadian physical education teacher working at the YMCA Training School, what is now Springfield College in Massachusetts. Dr. Naismith had been challenged to create a new game that could be played indoors in the cold Massachusetts winters to fill in between the football and baseball seasons.
Dr. Naismith fastened wooden baskets high on the walls of the gymnasium. These baskets gave the new game its name. Of course, the object of the game was to get the ball into the baskets.
Using a soccer ball, two peach baskets placed 10 feet up in the air, nine players on each team and a set of 13 basic rules, Dr. Naismith invented the game of “basket ball.” The first game was played on December 21, 1891.
Initially, players could only advance the ball by passing it. Players earned points by successfully tossing the soccer ball into the peach baskets. The players who were lucky enough to make a basket needed a ladder to get the ball out again.
James Naismith devoted little effort to shaping the evolution of the game he invented, although he spent a decade as the University of Kansas’s founding basketball coach, losing more games than he won.