James Naismith

by Richie from Marathon

James Naismith  ( ( Kansas Historical Society))
James Naismith ( ( Kansas Historical Society))

            Dr. James Naismith is one of the most important persons in sports history. He invented one of the most popular sports today, basketball. He also pushed the limits of literacy, art, science, and technology for new hopes. That is why I consider James Naismith a "Renaissance Man."

            Dr. James Naismith was born on November 6, 1861 in Almonte, Ontario, Canada (Logan). He dropped out of high school early, but eventually went back to finish. Dr. Naismith went to the college of McGill University to become an athletic director. After he received his diploma, he moved to the U.S. In Denver Colorado he was a physical education director for the YMCA(Dr. James Naismith-The Inventor of Basketball). After that from 1897-1907 he was a basketball coach for Kansas(Dr. James Naismith-The Inventor of Basketball).

            While working for the YMCA, Dr. Naismith's director asked some other teachers and him to invent a game to replace the boring and dangerous sports played during winter months(Compton's by Britannica). By taking parts of sports that already existed, Naismith created the game of basketball. His new game used thirteen rules. The game didn't involve much contact, and consisted of two peach crates being nailed to each end of the gym. There were nine players on each team running up and down the court dribbling and passing a ball trying to throw it in the peach baskets. Thus the game of basketball. 

            Not only did James Naismith create basketball, he is also credited for inventing the first football helmet. Dr. Naismith also created many smaller games such as Duck-on-a-rock(Dr. James Naismith-The Inventor of Basketball).

            If it wasn't for other sports existing at the time, Dr. Naismith most likely wouldn't have come up with the game of basketball. He took ideas from other sports such as American football, soccer, and field hockey to create his own game (Compton's by Britannica).

            The game of basketball changed the way people live because a lot of people in the NBA come from different countries around the world. Basketball gave hope to those who needed it (Bellis). Many kids in other countries could be amazing at sports, but a lot wouldn't know because they never got the chance to play. Some of the kids that have the opportunity to try a sport may be good enough to play in a higher league in the U.S.

            The game also changed the way people view the world. Some people and kids love basketball so much, they devote their lives to the game. Basketball is everything to some people, like me. Also, many kids are trying harder in school to keep their grades up so they can play sports like basketball. Professional athletes talk to schools about kids dropping out of school.  They tell them it's not the right thing to do and that they need to stay in school so when they get older they can get a good job. Many kids set high goals for themselves to achieve, like being the best basketball player. For some, the sport is more than a game, it's a passion (Dr. James Naismith-The inventor of Basketball). This is why basketball changes the way people think about everything.

            Today we see basketball practically everywhere. There are hundreds of high school teams, college teams, and the NBA (Bellis). Many people in the world have either heard, played, or seen basketball. The game is everywhere.

            If Dr. Naismith had not thought of such an amazing game and didn't invent basketball, I think things would be a lot different. I think more and more kids would have dropped out of school, many kids wouldn't play a sport at all, and wouldn't get enough exercise and they could become unhealthy.

            In conclusion I think James Naismith meets the definition of a "Renaissance Man." He pushes the limits of literacy, art, science, and technology, for new hopes. That is why I think he is an important person in our history.   

The inventor of a beautiful game  ( (Krishna Chaitanya))
The inventor of a beautiful game ( (Krishna Chaitanya))


Page created on 7/16/2013 12:00:00 AM

Last edited 1/6/2017 11:25:29 PM

The beliefs, viewpoints and opinions expressed in this hero submission on the website are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the beliefs, viewpoints and opinions of The MY HERO Project and its staff.

Related Links

Kansapedia - Kansas Historical Society
Kansas History - history of basketball