Bengaluru Level 1 aspirants with veteran FIBA coaching instructor Nelson Isley at the Kanteerava indoor stadium.

Bengaluru Level 1 aspirants with veteran FIBA coaching instructor Nelson Isley at the Kanteerava indoor stadium.

Bengaluru, 1st December, 2015: The Basketball Federation of India (BFI) along with the International Basketball Association (FIBA) has begun successfully conducting Level 1 FIBA Coaching Certification Courses in various parts of the country. Each clinic is a 5-day course of 2 sessions per day, consisting of theoretical as well as practical sessions and also includes a written and practical evaluation. The Level 2 FIBA Coaching Certification Courses begin next week in Hyderabad, followed by Chandigarh, which will be a 6-day course of 2 sessions per day.

Already the first leg in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh has been completed on 22nd November, with 30 participants in the course. The Bengaluru leg has also been completed on 29th November. Every single Level 1 clinic has seen the all 30 registration spots fill up, and due to high demand, Level 2 registrations have been increased from 15 to 20.

These courses are being held in line with BFI and FIBA’s long-term coaching development strategy. Hence, all current and aspiring coaches in India are actively interested as it helps in improving their chances to coach the National team along with developing the game in India. FIBA Instructor Mr. Nelson G Isley is the instructor at these courses. He has over 40 years of international basketball experience as a player, coach and instructor.  This is the US born Isley’s fifth time in India.  His previous stints in India were for the conduct of 14 similar clinics.

Bengaluru level 1 coaching clinic underway with veteran FIBA coaching instructor Nelson Isley at the Kanteerava indoor stadium.

Bengaluru Level 1 coaching clinic underway with veteran FIBA coaching instructor Nelson Isley at the Kanteerava indoor stadium.

Coach Isley shares his thoughts

Compared to previous years, this time around, the emphasis is on practical demonstration as against theory. Coaches themselves are being made to showcase their skills on the court. “There’s one thing certain about life, that if you can’t do something [yourself] you can’t teach it,” said Mr Isley prior to the Saturday afternoon clinic at the Kanteerava Indoor Stadium in Bengaluru.

Elaborating further, he said, “Indian coaches are very interested in learning… and have been very respectful… The hope is that eventually not only will you get Indian players that are ‘exportable’ so to speak… but that India can become an exporter of coaches.” Isley confirmed that India, along with China, Nigeria, South Africa and Brazil, are priority countries for FIBA because of their sizeable populations and high number of talented athletes.

Speaking about the growing prominence of the Indian basketball programme he said, “There’s no doubt about it… progress has been made here… Now India is not an ‘easy game’. Other countries know now that when they play [India] they have to respect them and perform at a high level or they will get beaten.”

FIBA veteran coaching instructor Nelson Isley in action with the level 1 aspirants in bengaluru at the Kanteerava indoor stadium.

FIBA veteran coaching instructor Nelson Isley in action with the Level 1 aspirants in Bengaluru at the Kanteerava indoor stadium.

Bengaluru clinic sees diverse participation

Participating coaches in the ongoing Bengaluru clinic include coaches from different parts of Karnataka, as well as the neighbouring states of Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra and Goa, and even one coach from Sri Lanka.

“I have already done my diploma course from National Institute of Sports, Patiala. But when I heard that a knowledgeable person like Mr Isley is going to guide and examine us, I registered for the course,” said Mr Anpur Raviprakash, a leading grassroots coach from Karnataka.

“A certification from here is equal to an international certification. It helps us apply for coaching jobs in good schools,” said Prem Kumar, a young coach from Bhavan’s Vidya Mandir in Kochi, Kerala. “Unlike other coaching sessions where players have to showcase the drills, the key difference here is that we coaches have to perform the drills ourselves. So it is a great way to internalize the lessons.”

“Level 1 course is meant for coaching children between the years of 8 to 14. Coach Nelson has taught us so many things, and what makes him remarkable is that he is a great fundamental coach as well as a successful coach at the international level,” said Rameshkumar Durairaju, an international referee who is doubles up as a basketball coach at the Indus International School in Bengaluru.

“I don’t think my future is in the corporate field. I love what I do and am confident of clearing the written exam,” said 22-year-old Vinay Venkatesh, probably the youngest participant in the clinic. “I think this is an excellent initiative. Coach Isley has said that he wants as many as 10000 FIBA certified coaches in India. So hopefully this is just the start.”

“I think this FIBA Level 1 is a course every coach must do. I am very thankful to BFI for giving me this opportunity,” said Ransin Ginige, the lone coach from Sri Lanka at the clinic.

Veteran FIBA coaching instructor Nelson Isley instruction all the level 1 aspirants in Bengaluru at the Kanteerava indoor stadium.

Veteran FIBA coaching instructor Nelson Isley instructing all the Level 1 aspirants in Bengaluru at the Kanteerava indoor stadium.

About FIBA Coaching Certification Courses

FIBA, the world governing body for basketball, organizes these courses across the world as a development initiative. These courses have been organized in India since 2013 with the plan to have as many FIBA Certified coaches in India as possible to help develop the game at a higher level. These courses are all part of the long-term strategy of the BFI and FIBA to increase the coaching knowledge of the game at the grassroots as well as elite levels.

Previous years’ clinics were conducted in Mumbai (Level 1), Ranchi (Level 1), Delhi (Level 1 & 2), Chennai (Level 1 & 2), Hyderabad (Level 1), Chandigarh (Level 1), Ahmedabad (Level 1), Assam (Level 1), Kochi (Level 1), Ludhiana (Level 1), Patna (Level 1), and Pune (Level 1).

Not including the coaches who are expected to clear the 2015 clinics, there are currently 212 Level 1 and 27 Level 2 certified coaches in the country.

About the 2015 FIBA Coaching Certification Courses

Dates & Location of the 2015 courses:

Sr. No. FIBA Coaching Certification Dates Location Status
1. LEVEL 1 18th – 22ndNovember, 2015 Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh Completed
2 LEVEL 1 25th – 29thNovember, 2015 Bangalore, Karnataka Completed
3. LEVEL 2 3rd – 8thDecember, 2015 Chandigarh Scheduled
4. LEVEL 2 10th – 15thDecember, 2015 Hyderabad, Telangana Scheduled
5. LEVEL 1 16th – 20thDecember, 2015 Kolkata, West Bengal Scheduled

The curriculum for these courses is based on FIBA Basketball for Young Players: Chapters 1 – 5 (Level 1) and chapters 6 – 10 (Level 2) which can be found online at!baskForYounPlay.html

The eligibility criteria for the Level 1 clinics are:

  • Ability to read/write English
  • Age above 18 years old
  • Currently active as a coach, ideally at school or college levels

Additionally, the BFI will be implementing a similar coaching structure/system in the near future in which certain minimum certifications/qualifications are required to coach at the National Levels.

The FIBA Coaching Certification Course – Level 1 has 30 seats and Level 2 has 20 seats on a first come first serve basis for active coaches from all over the country. Only Level 1 certified coaches with the recommendation from the FIBA Instructor will be given a slot to attend the Level 2 course. For further inquiry please check the BFI website ( or email the BFI at

Team Ekalavyas
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