Sooke children interested in learning how to play basketball are in luck.
The Sooke Storm Youth Basketball Club, a program for children aged between 6-11, is being offered through SEAPARC and Todd Kozinka, long-time basketball player and coach.
Kozinka said the program will give children other opportunities for fitness outside of traditional small town sports like ice hockey, baseball and soccer.
“There’s a greater need because there’s no basketball program in Sooke for children right now,” he said.
“If they want to play in a league, they have to go into Victoria, and if they want to get instruction, there is nothing in Sooke.”
The program will work on skill development like dribbling, passing, catching, shooting, footwork and basic movement skills. Every session will have lots of game play time.
Although there is a focus on skill development, Kozinka said everything will be taught in a fun learning environment.
Kozinka also stressed that basketball is a great sport overall, being inexpensive and accessible.
“You don’t need a lot of equipment, you can play inside or outside, you can play it anytime of the year, you can play with one other friend, you can play three-on-three, four-on-four or five-on-five. So it’s a great game that way.”
The program is also being run to gauge the interest from children and parents on the possibility of starting up a basketball association.
“Right now it’s just a fun program I’m trying to get going in hopes of starting a club down the road,” Kozinka said.
“If we get enough interest from parents and kids, we can formally start to work on building a club — a club mentality and framework.”
Kozinka has over 30 years of experience coaching basketball, and has coached at the elementary, high school and international level.
Sooke Storm Youth Basketball Club will take place at Journey middle school, and there are two intakes for two separate age groups.
For children aged six to eight:
Jan. 10 – Feb. 14 on Thursdays from 5 p.m. to 5:45 p.m.
Feb. 21 – April 4 on Thursdays from 5 p.m. to 5:45 p.m.
For children aged nine to 11:
Jan. 10 – Feb. 14 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Feb. 21 – April 4 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Prices range from $42 to $63.