Sports & Recreation

Recreation coaches the youth during the little ballerz program by first standing and recognizing the baseline of the basketball court.

Community Youth Learn the Basics of Basketball

By Richie Corrales
Au-Authm Action News

This spring, young children up to five years old have been participating in the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community Recreation Department’s “Li’l Ballerz” program, enjoying their first experience learning how to play basketball. The kids met on Saturdays in March.

“Li’l Ballerz is a basketball program for ages three to five where we teach them the basics of basketball,” said Recreation Athletic Coordinator II David Willis. “We teach them how to shoot, dribble and pass the ball.” The kids start off by becoming familiar with the basketball court itself. “We do everything as a group, so it gets the kids used to being around and playing with other children their age.”

Willis explained that the program staff teaches drills to the kids, and the skills are all things that the kids and their parents can work on together at home.

As each Li’l Ballerz program comes to a close, a small party is held to recognize the children’s participation, and each child receives a Li’l Ballerz T-shirt.

For more information on the schedule for future Li’l Ballerz programs, contact the SRPMIC Recreation Department at (480) 362-5765 or email David Willis at

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