Basketball Victoria is introducing Size 5 Basketballs for Under-12 competitions. This decision first affects our Under 12 representative (VJBL) players, who will be using a Size 5 ball as from September 2021. The EDJBA will be making a decision on Size 5 balls for Saturday domestic teams shortly.
Basjketball Victoria advises that this change is in the players’ best interest as the smaller ball helps improve shooting skills at an earlier age. The Size 5 Ball will allow Under-12 players to develop correct techniques with an appropriately sized ball before transitioning to larger basketballs in older age groups.
Size 5 basketballs should be available soon from sports stores (when open) and can also be ordered online from Spalding here. Collingwood will be providing a Size 5 ball to the coach of each under 12 rep team for use in training and games, replacing the Size 6 they currently have.
Players will continue to use a Size 6 Basketball (under-14 boys/under-14 girls and older) as well as the Size 7 Basketball (under-16 boys and older) in Basketball Victoria competitions.
“We want to enable Victorian players to develop exceptional shooting skills so they can take their talents to the highest level across Australia and the world,” Basketball Victoria’s General Manager – High Performance and Pathway Grant Wallace said. “A Size 5 Basketball for under-12 competitions will enable players to hone their technique and become better shooters throughout the rest of their time in basketball. We also believe the policy will enhance enjoyment of the game and in turn allow for better player retention.
“Adopting the Size 5 Basketball will improve our sport across the board and make Victorians even better at higher levels of competition throughout their careers.
“I’d like to congratulate Basketball Victoria’s High Performance coaches – Zoe Carr, Ash Arnott, Jenni Screen and Nathan Cooper-Brown – for completing this ground-breaking paper and helping propel Victorian basketball to even greater heights.”
The recommendation paper cites several case studies overseas that show a positive correlation in both performance and enjoyment with appropriately sized equipment including the International Journal of Sport Science and Coaching (2019).