open gym (ages 10-24)
Open gym is a concept familiar to most people. Typically, a bunch of guys show up, pick up teams, and play basketball until the gym closes. It's a self-contained activity that allows people to get some exercise for a couple hours.
That's not open gym to Beyond the Ball. Our open gym times serve a purpose.
Participants engage in athletics within a safe, structured, and supervised environment. This is an opportunity for them to develop positive, productive and cross-cultural relationships among peers.
Open gym is also a means to seeking out natural leaders within an age group. Those with leadership skills are the ones who will eventually captain and coach teams in tournaments. They will have the opportunity to build on the natural talents they have.
Open gym is where we also find those who are committed. Basketball talent can, for a very small percentage of people, lead to a successful stint in the NBA. Commitment, however, can lead to success for many in a variety of fields. Open gyms create relationships between many youth and the staff of Beyond the Ball that results in deeper levels of involvement. Open gyms are often the jumping off point for kids who later serve as youth coaches for other programs, participate in experience trips, or even become staff members.