Grizzly Basketball Training






Grizzly Basketball Training is built upon three key beliefs. First, we believe all sessions should be professionally run by trainers who are qualified and high-energy. Second, we understand that busy families are juggling many schedules and that the program schedules and communication should be well organized for minimal disruption to family schedules. And third, we believe in a spirit of collaboration, that we need each other to accomplish our goals, that we are more together, that it benefits “our” kids and the community when we cooperate. Grizzly Basketball believes in including as many stakeholders as possible, from trainers to comp coaches. Think about a co-op concept. Trainers will be responsible for providing individual training times; comp coaches will organize, practice, and coach teams on game days.

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How is Grizzly Basketball Training different?

Grizzly Basketball Training makes it home on the courts of Grizzly Family Fitness, the best facility in the State of Alaska. The facility offers (5) full-sized basketball courts. The biggest difference between Grizzly Basketball Training and other programs is that our program is staffed by several trainers. What that means for your player is that their experience won’t be limited to one main trainer. It’s likely that your player will be able to develop their game under the instruction of several trainers/coaches. As mentioned above, Grizzly Family Fitness is the premier facility with the cleanest and most up-to-date courts. Equipment includes ROCK Basketballs, shooting machines, NOAH shooting system, HUDL cameras to live stream/record game tape, and other skill-training aides. Grizzly’s training schedule aims to provide special guest coach sessions along with a reward system to keep players motivated to attend sessions.

What is the difference between basketball training and practice?

Both training and practice are important elements to a player’s development, but training is best differentiated from practice in that a player’s individual skill improvement is the primary focus.

If my player signs up for training, is it possible to find a comp team to play on?

Absolutely, most kids who sign up for training eventually end up on a local comp team. K-2 players usually sign up for Valley Youth Basketball recreational leagues to get valuable playing time.

Why is it better to start basketball development early?

Starting early is important for two reasons. First, basketball is a sport that requires a high degree of skill. Skill development takes times. The earlier a kid starts playing the more likely they will excel later. Second, getting your child started early encourages only exercise but also serves as a foundation to build healthy life-long habits of exercise. One of the biggest positives of exercise is the connection that athletes find by participating in a sport.

What age do most competitive players start basketball specific skills training?

Many competitive youth basketball players in Alaska begin training in 1st-3rd grade. The majority start with skills training of two days a week to build a foundation to prepare them to play on comp teams in the future. Players then advance to either more days a week or longer sessions as they get older.

What is the difference between comp and travel teams?

A comp team is usually a local collection of players that practice together and compete in local leagues. A travel team is usually a collection of the best players from different comp teams that will practice together for a short duration and then travel to tournaments outside of Alaska. Travel teams can begin for players as young as fifth grade all the way through high school. If interested in trying out for a comp or travel team, contact (????).

Can I play on more than one team at the same time?

Yes, many players play on different comp teams or travel teams at the same time. Other kids play on a comp team and in Valley Youth Basketball’s recreational leagues. Whatever is best for the player is recommended.

Can I play comp and rec basketball at the same time?

Yes, many developing comp league players also play in recreational leagues to gain more precious playing time. Of course, this depends on whether practice and game conflicts allow.

What is a description of each of the following programs?

Grizzly Cub Training – meant for brand new players to basketball, grades K-2. Foundational skills are taught so kids are prepared for future full-blown training and participating on comp teams. Grizzly Kids Training - meant for kids who have already achieved a certain level of basketball skill and are ready for more advanced instruction as well as participating on comp teams. Tourneys – comp teams enter tourneys at Grizzly Family Fitness (approx. 4/year) or tournaments around Alaska. Teams from the Valley, Anchorage, and all over the State of Alaska participate in the tourneys. Rec Leagues – offer through Valley Youth Basketball 2-3 times/year, during the Fall, Winter (just K-2), and Spring. Go to to check out the latest offerings. Comp Leagues – Grizzly comp teams play in Valley Comp Basketball’s league during the winter (Dec/Jan/Feb) and Spring (Apr/May). Comp teams will be from the Valley or Anchorage. Travel Teams – Grizzly’s Basketball’s co-op of coaches will organize tryouts for players interested in traveling to out-of-state tournaments. Players from all over the state are invited to try out for these teams. Contact the Program Admin for details…Kevin McHenry Special Events – these events include special camps and events that outside the norm of Grizzly Basketball Training. One yearly special event is Point Guard College – a camp held each June at Grizzly Family Fitness for 5th grade players and older. Coaches from the Lower 48 come to Alaska to administer the camp. Other special events may include shooting or specialty camps offered by a guest “expert” coach who focuses on a specific skill.