If you ask about favorite sports to people, undoubtedly most of the people have same answer; basketball.

Basketball icon and legend Michael Jordan. Photo from WikiMedia.
Basketball icon and legend Michael Jordan. Photo from WikiMedia.

The reason behind the popularity of the basketball is its extremely fascinating history. Canadian-American James Naismith is known as the father of Basketball. He invented basketball while teaching at the International YMCA training school in Springfield, Massachusetts in early 1981.

The first balls were specially made brown, but in late 1950s, Tony Hinkley discovered orange ball would be more visible for a player which is now in common use. Basketball was originally played with the soccer ball. When winter gets too icy, players were not able to play soccer outside, teams were taken indoor and it was suitable to split them half;  5 player on each side. The objective of the game is to shoot a ball through hoop 46 cm in diameter at a height of 3.04 meters.

There are many skills for ball handling- dribbling, shooting, passing, blocking and rebounding. On the court there are generally 5 positions: center, power forward, small forward, point guard and shooting guard.

The establishment of FIBA (International Basketball Association) in 1932 took basketball into a different level. Basketball appears in Olympics in the summer of 1936 in Berlin, Germany for the first time. The National Basketball league  is the third biggest professional league in all sports. According to Forbes, The league’s 30 teams generated $ 5.2 billion in revenue in the 2015-16 season.

Originally basketball was played by boys, but after one year of its introduction, a physical education teacher at Smith College, Senda Berenson, modified Naismith's rules for women in 1982. However, it took a while for a birth of Women’s National Basketball Association in the United States.

A game of wheelchair basketball. Photo from WikiMedia.
A game of wheelchair basketball. Photo from WikiMedia.

As the popularity of basketball went up, people have found different variations of it. For a unique experience from the same concept and slightly modified rules, sports lovers were able to create various types of basketball including water basketball, beach basketball, slamball, streetball, dunk hoops and wheelchair basketball.  

Regardless of the variation or location, basketball has grown to become one of the most beloved sports to spectate and play in the world.

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