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Fagaloa Basketball Clinics underway

[Courtesy photo]

In an effort to keep kids busy during summer break and to help adults get the daily exercise they need, the folks at  Fagaloa Basketball Development kicked off their annual summer basketball clinic earlier this month.

Fagaloa Basketball Development president Michael Pereira told Samoa News yesterday that the summer clinics, which are fully backed by the American Samoa Basketball Association (ASBA) — for which he is a board member — have been an annual event for about a decade and the program seems to gain popularity every year, evident with the growing number of participants.

This year, over 50 kids, as young as five years old, are at the Aua basketball court everyday learning the basics of dribbling, ball handling, shooting, and defending.

While the program was initially set up for kids to learn the game, build good sportsmanship, and develop friendships, Pereira said the clinics have expanded to include participation from adults - some of whom are over 40 years old - looking for a way to burn calories and stay fit.

"Some of the old folks are parents whose kids are in the clinics, and some are just adults looking to break a sweat," he said. "They asked for permission to play and we gave them the ok, as it is a great way to help in the fight against diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure."

The program concludes in two weeks and is free of charge.

It is not limited to kids and adults from Aua. As a matter of fact, a good number of participants are from other Fagaloa villages like Pago Pago, Leloaloa, and Atu'u.

"Anyone who wants to play is welcomed to join," Pereira said.

The clinics are held everyday Monday through Friday from 2 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Pereira and four other coaches oversee the program which the kids describe as "awesome" and "fun".

On Saturdays, the clinics shift to the ASCC gymnasium where the kids take what they learned during that week and put it to the test by playing against their peers from the Central and West Side Divisions.

"We want the kids to play together and get a chance to use what they learn from the clinics, on the court," Pereira concluded.

Catch the action today by stopping by the Aua basketball court (across the street from the Aua Elementary School campus).

Pictured are some of the kids currently learning how to shoot hoops.