Kids still home and getting more bored with video games as he or she awaits the return of team sports to play and pro sports to watch? Now you can bring an NBA player…or trainer…into your home to help them with workouts.
It is part of a Wednesday announcement between the NBA Players Association and Famer, a New York based platform that provides interactive training sessions for youth sports. The program will now have a growing number of NBA players, as well as a wide variety of trainers who work with elite athletes, available via video feed to not just provide basic tips, but to breakdown your son’s or daughter’s backyard jumpshot.
While no current Knicks or Nets are on the launch list (RJ Barrett where are you? ), there are a number of elite trainers with New York ties. They include former Fordham assistant Ross Burns who has over 15 years of experience training over 100 NBA players including substantial work with JJ Redick (New Orleans Pelicans), Joakim Noah (Memphis Grizzlies) and Joe Harris (Brooklyn Nets); Tim Burns, who has trained Kemba Walker (Boston Celtics), Mikal Bridges (Phoenix Suns #10 pick ‘18) and Thon Maker (Milwaukee Bucks #10 pick ’16; Queens native Chris Jean, who now leads all the Knicks grassroots programs; Sean Crawford, whose students include Breanna Stewart (Seattle storm), and Moe Harkless (New York Knicks); Columbia grad Craig Alfano; Brooklyn’s Gigi Brown whose work has been with Steph Curry, Trey Burke, David Lee and others.
All of whom are just a video uplink and log in away in the coming weeks. “Over the last few years, our NBPA youth camps and training clinics have given us the opportunity to make a positive impact in grassroots basketball in major cities like New York and Los Angeles,” said Dan Gladstone, SVP of Grassroots Basketball & Business Development for THINK450, the for-profit arm of the NBPA in a press release Wednesday. “This collaboration with Famer allows us and our members to digitally connect with the larger grassroots basketball community throughout this pandemic, and also expand our reach and impact globally in the long term. We look forward to having kids of all ages and skill levels train with us and to finding ways to continue to innovate with our players and brand partners.”
For Famer, the partnership with the NBPA is a next step in a business that now engages thousands of kids across the county, especially in the New York area, in sports like basketball, lacrosse, and biggest of all, youth soccer drills. It is a trend that was gaining steam before COVID 19, and one that will continue to expand in the months to come, even as things start to return to normal. For the NBPA, it is an opportunity to engage with kids not just at a clinic, but around the world.
“The current issue of social distancing in youth sports also brings the opportunity for innovation and engagement with kids in a truly unique way,” said Famer CEO Rich Abend. “This partnership with the NBPA is a great example of how to bring curated communication and training from the world’s best athletes and trainers directly to kids via their mobile phones. It will help kids stay active and connected through COVID-19 but also will continue to grow in the coming months and years for athletes of every skill level around the world.”
Information on the NBPA Training Ground program can be found at www.nbpa.com/grassroots or on the Famer App, available for download here. The access to players will begin in the coming days, which will be a must have as young players go pool-less and camp-less around the city this summer.
The skills they need now come to them.