Establishing a support system

In basketball and in life, you are going to need a support system. The further you want to go, the more important it becomes.

Whether it is 100 people or just one person, you are going to need a support system of some kind as you advance in your basketball career. You may have a circle already, but is it filled with individuals that truly support and want the best for you?

Yes, your mama can be your support system. Yes, a teacher, friend, or coach can be your support system. It doesn’t matter who it is as long as they are honest, supportive, and willing to have your back as you fight to achieve your dreams. Taking any path in life by yourself is going to be exponentially more difficult than doing it with the support of others. Even more difficult is going through life surrounded by the wrong people.

Individuals can unfortunately be toxic in many different ways. There are those that scheme and undermine you intentionally, though it may not always be immediately apparent. Sometimes people just don’t want you to succeed and will work behind the scenes to hold you back. It is a tough reality to face when this happens, especially when it comes from a source that you believed was in your corner.

Often, there is an even more difficult obstacle to detect. Some people in your corner may be unintentionally toxic. They think they help, they think they build you up, but really they are unaware that they do more harm than good. These situations are tough to deal with.

Cutting ties with someone you’re close to is going to be hard. However, it is imperative that you only surround yourself with those that will build you up and help you be the best person and player you can be.

The further you get in your basketball career, the more important this lesson will become. A negative influence is going to impact you at any level. That said, seriousness turns up as you select a college to play for. The more positive voices in your ear, the better. The more negative influences, the greater the consequences.

After college, if you are trying to play pro ball, you will need to work harder than you ever had in your life. You need everything to be as streamlined and beneficial as possible. At this stage, a negative influence can cost you everything. Make sure that your support system is filled with those that want to lift you up - not those that are looking for a meal ticket.

Knowing exactly who has your back can be more difficult than it sounds. Trust your instincts and listen to any nagging inclinations that someone may not have your best interest in mind. What is easy is stringing these people along for far too long. Don’t make that mistake; you will need to pull the weeds as soon as you can if you are going to grow and flourish to reach your potential (congratulations on reading the first and last gardening/basketball tie-in ever).

We used the words “difficult” and “tough” quite a bit in here. Establishing a support system is not always difficult, but maintaining it can be. Do your best, and really lean on those that you can trust completely. A strong support system will carry you far in all aspects of life!

Alize Johnson gives back to his community

Ally of The Basketball Movement, Missouri State Alum, and NBA forward, Alize Johnson is using his platform to improve his community and change lives.

At The Basketball Movement, we talk about using basketball to give back to the community quite a bit and we are thrilled to see that our friend, Alize Johnson is doing just that. When he was coming into our facility to get work while he was attending Missouri State, Alize was a bad man on the floor and a good one off of it. Things don’t appear to have changed, which is awesome to see.

The Indiana Pacers signed Johnson to a two-way contract in his rookie season, which means that he played plenty of G-League ball, but was also available to play minutes with the Pacers. Never the biggest player on the court, he still did an excellent job of crashing the glass all season and turned in a nice rookie campaign.

Despite staying plenty busy all season, Alize has still found time to do big things through the Alize Johnson Foundation.

Originally from WIlliamsport, Pennsylvania, Johnson is clearly remembering his roots, as this will be the site of his foundation’s big project. He will be putting in three NBA regulation outdoor courts. The project includes adjustable hoops, lights, fencing, and new bleachers. The courts will have a security guard stationed from 4-8pm to aid in making this a safe space for the youth of Williamsport.

The project is titled WtaWtaW (Where there’s a Will, there’s a Way). The project is also sponsored by PRN Home Health Services and the Pepsi Bottling Group in Williamsport. Their donation page can be found here: https://fundrazr.com/41ShQ7?ref=sh_c7ssh2_ab_319MbZF7yHP319MbZF7yHP

We are proud of Alize for supporting his community in this way. Basketball is obviously his bread and butter, so finding a way to channel that into something bigger is incredible to see.

The Basketball Movement is focused daily on helping players on the court. However, there is nothing better than seeing athletes (especially one’s we’ve had the pleasure of working with) use basketball for an even greater purpose.

Props to Alize for making big moves that will positively affect lives in his community. No doubt he continues the good work through his career and beyond.

Pursue your passion at The Basketball Movement

We encourage everyone to pursue their passion. If yours is basketball: you couldn’t be in a better place.

Each individual is gifted with a unique array of preferences, strengths, and interests. To maximize strengths, cater to preferences, and pursue interests is to seek a happy and successful experience in life. Woah… got deep for a second there. All that is to say that you need to do what makes you happy.

If you are reading this, you likely have some sort of tie to the game of basketball. Noting that it is a game is often important, but at the same time, it is a true passion for many people.

Whether you play the game, watch it, coach, ref, or just like a little 2K action, the game has something for everyone. The back-and-forth action is perfect to get adrenaline pumping. The mix of speed and strength, brute force and finesse, or offensive versus defensive prowess means that no game will be exactly the same. The constant is two teams that want to win and maybe even more so: don’t want to lose.

The Basketball Movement keeps its doors open for all kinds of players. Multi-sport athletes looking to get in shape can certainly come in and get in intense workouts. Players that just need to stay sharp with occasional drills or with our shooting gun are always welcome. Though the facility accommodates so many types of players, it was clearly built for those that are passionate about the game.

Rob Yanders, Founder of The Basketball Movement, is one of those individuals that is passionate about the sport of basketball. It is evident all over the facility. The off-court amenities such as the Chop Shop upstairs, the smart screen in the film room, the embroidered leather seats, everything is all detailed in ways that show Rob’s passion for the full breadth of the sport. Still, the true fire for the game blazes on the courts.

The Basketball Movement, Rob Yanders, and the other coaches are all at their absolute best when they are mixed with other individuals that have a true passion for the game.

A desire to improve is great, but a desire to be one of the best is the kind of all-in mentality that it takes to be an elite player. This facility is built so that you get out exactly what you put in. If you leave it all on our courts during workouts, you will improve without a doubt. The change could be subtle or drastic, but rest assured that the passionate will come away better.

Want to make varsity? Play at the D1 level? Get paid to play professional hoops? We can get you there; you will just have to be willing to put in the time and effort.

If basketball really is your passion, you have to reach out to us at The Basketball Movement. It is a business, but it is one ran by passionate hoop-heads that want little more than to bring others into the fold and maximize their potential on the court or even off of it. You will not regret pursuing your passion for basketball right here at The Basketball Movement.

What team chemistry really means

Coaches, fans, and basketball pundits all love to talk about team chemistry. What does it really mean?

At the risk of starting this off like a middle school essay, let’s just go ahead and state the literal definition of the word “chemistry”. The definition is not as clean and simple as we may like. However, you can see how when broken down, it can be simply applied to the sport of basketball.

Google defines chemistry as “the branch of science that deals with the identification of the substances of which matter is composed; the investigation of their properties and the ways in which they interact, combine, and change; and the use of these processes to form new substances.”

To start, we can fill in a few of the terms with basketball jargon: Identification of the players of which a team is composed. Identifying for our purposes isn’t just knowing your teammate’s names. To achieve ideal chemistry, you must know their strengths, weaknesses, and tendencies.

“…the investigation of their properties and the ways in which they interact, combine, and change…” Once you know them as mentioned above, you can begin to anticipate their actions, while also watching them grow as players and teammates.

Finally, “form new substances” is the resulting team. Players that know each other inside and out, on and off the court form the teams that will have what is referred to as great team chemistry.

Chemistry can be difficult for teams that introduce or bid farewell to players frequently. Still, stressing the importance of chemistry allows our coaches and teams to have a working understanding of what is necessary at all times.

We create a standard for how we want to do things and everyone’s got to buy into that standard or you really can’t have any team chemistry. Mediocre people don’t like high-achievers and high-achievers don’t like mediocre people.
— Nick Saban

When a team has good chemistry, it shows. Chemistry happens in the trenches, such as during practices. It also happens off the court, when teams are able to bond on more personal levels.

This is an important area for teams and we encourage our players to always stick together. Help your teammates up, give them affirmation in real life or on social media, just… be a friend.

For more on teamwork, motivation, and everything else basketball, keep it locked right here!

One-on-One: Chris Ward, new Trainer and Coach

The Basketball Movement and Yanders Law are excited to announce the hiring of Yanders Law alum, Chris Ward as a Trainer and Coach.

The Basketball Movement is selective in it’s hires, and we know exactly what we are getting in Chris Ward. Chris has been coming around the gym and working with Robert Yanders long before Rob bought the facility and turned it into The Basketball Movement. Ward was among the first to play under the Yanders Law banner and has been involved with what Rob has been doing ever since.

“Being on Rob’s first Yanders Law team, it’s great to come back and get to be around the other generations” said Ward. He is not only a Yanders Law alumni, but a familiar face for many area hoops fans as well. Ward’s jersey is retired at Kickapoo High School where he was an All-District and All-State player.

Chris went on to play at Philander Smith College in Little Rock and even played professionally in the Republic of Georgia for a while. He knew that his passion for basketball was well-suited for training and coaching, so he came home and is now back where it all began.

Knowing Rob since he was 10 and playing with him since he was 14, Chris says that it is incredible to see what Rob has built since then. He recalls winning a lot of games with Yanders Law in high school. Those are times you don’t forget - especially with so many takeaways that come from working with Yanders.

Playing for Rob was and is worth it. He teaches you consistency and that hard work can take you lots of places. Summer workouts, everything, it all sticks with you. Rob is all about character and using basketball as a tool to give you a better life. It all stems from hard work.
— Chris Ward

Ward says that he is going to be giving lessons, doing strengths and conditioning, and helping to run clinics in addition to becoming a Yanders Law Coach. “It’s a job, but I get to be working every day with people that want to be better” says Ward. “Basketball is everything to me; it makes it easy to get up in the morning. So yeah, it’s a job, but it doesn’t feel like it to me.”

Asked about his training/coaching style, Chris says that he will naturally emulate Yanders. “I mean, I’m just going to do what I’ve learned from Rob over so many years.” He says that he is loud, energetic, and quick to relate to the players because he has been in their shoes. “As a coach, I like fast pace. I want to really see my players getting up and down the floor.”

Having played for Robert Yanders, Ward knows the meaning of “hard work” and it is probably not a term he would use lightly. Players that get to work with Ward will experience second-hand Yanders intensity, so they will need to come ready.

The Basketball Movement and Yanders Law are thrilled to help Chris Ward bring his basketball journey full circle. Watching players pursue their passion (basketball or otherwise) is one of the greatest feelings for coaches, trainers, and anyone else that is a part of our organizations. He will be another tremendous asset to our team.

Welcome aboard, Chris!

It isn't the shoes - The triviality of "drip"

In the world of hoops, shoes are huge. From Converse, to Air Force 1s, to LeBrons, kicks are a part of the culture. Does that mean they are important?

Around The Basketball Movement, you are going to see some shoe game. Many of the players that come through our doors are rocking the latest gear, Owner Robert Yanders has many of his staff in new LeBrons, and Rob himself is always on point. A deal with Nike makes sure of that. Looking the part builds confidence, establishes basketball credibility, and frankly looks good. So, these things are all important right?

Somewhat yes.

The look often comes down to personal preference and the performance of the shoes, shorts, and shirts is what is most important. Are the shoes light enough for hooping? Good grip? Do they fit your unique foot correctly? Are they within your means?

As mentioned, shoes are part of the culture. Having shoe game is nice, but at the end of the day, it is what you do while you are wearing them that matters most. PJ Tucker of the Houston Rockets is one of the NBA’s most impressive connoisseurs of kicks. That doesn’t mean is out there out-performing young players wearing the same plain sneakers each night. Tucker just has an impressive collection. That’s it.

Many of us have played against teams that have impressive warmup gear, expensive shoes, and matching bags. Sometimes those teams are really good. Sometimes they aren’t. Don’t sweat the gear - just play the game.

Don’t feel like you have to have the nicest stuff to be the most impressive on the floor. A player keeping uo with the new wave has nothing to do with their shooting range, handles, court vision… you get it. Respect the culture but make no mistake, drip is trivial next to your basketball ability.

If you are one of those individuals who takes style seriously, it is okay to be confident, but you must remain humble as well. The last thing you want to do is lord your gear over other players are comment negatively about others. Many of those players would love to be rocking Jordans like you, but the price tag is not for everyone. Anything like that costs money, and the situations of others is not for you to judge. Be respectful.

At The Basketball Movement, we don’t only embrace individuals from all walks of life, we encourage that participation. We have well-to-do athletes that may never break varsity as well as low income athletes that have NBA aspirations (and everything in-between). We like to look good, but that doesn’t mean we would ever turn our nose up at anyone. If you walk in with torn up sneakers, Rob is probably already on his way upstairs to grab you something that will hold up for a patented intense workout.

As with many things in basketball or life, just do your best. If style or prestige isn’t important to you, don’t sweat it. If you value your swag, wear it like a champ. We are going to kick your butt in our workouts anyway. Wear what you want and play your heart out.

Don't be like Mike - The beauty of knowing your limits

Most players and fans grow up idolizing players on TV. The superstars carry a lot of appeal, but not everyone can be Michael Jordan.

We saw Kobe Bryant, who clearly modeled his game after Michael Jordan, grow into one of the greatest basketball players ever. Young players everywhere are honing their skills hoping to be just like LeBron James or Kevin Durant. Unfortunately, almost none of them will be. Don't worry! That is perfectly okay.

Everyone is made differently. You can hit the weight room every day,  but you are most likely not going to be able to bang in the paint with Dwight Howard or Shaq. Does that mean you should give up? Does not being Michael Jordan mean you should quit reaching? Heck no.

MJ could jump, handle, guard like crazy, and make defenders looks silly in almost every way. There aren't a lot of people who can be so extraordinary at so many aspects of the game.

So what do you do?

Find your personal strengths and work on them until it hurts. Shore up any weaknesses, but focus even more on what makes you a special player.

Just because you do have limits, doesn't mean you can't raise them. Have a decent jumper? Become a reliable jump shooter. Then, become a dangerous shooter. Always elevate each aspect of your game as much as possible, just don't get frustrated when you aren't the best there is.

If the Bulls had five fantastic shooting guards, would they start five shooting guards?

Every team needs bigs to crash the glass. Every team needs willing defenders who are content being the glue that doesn't stand out on the stat sheet. There are a lot of champions at every level of the game who are there because they put their ego aside and did what made them great for their team.

Don't be defined by your physical limits, but don't be afraid to embrace them either. There is a reason that Kyrie Irving doesn't care about dunking and Tim Duncan never worried about the three point line.

You can be great. Adapt and conquer the game in every way that is available to you. Don't be like Mike, be the best version of you that you can create.

Start by jumping aboard The Basketball Movement.

Multiple athletes gearing up for state push

With their teams preparing for the biggest stages of high school ball, we reach out to a few of our Yanders Law and The Basketball Movement athletes to get their thoughts.

Isaac Haney, Zach Howell, and Kanon Gipson are easy for us to get a hold of. These young men are staples of The Basketball Movement facility - always coming in to get work. Even now at the height of the season, their desire to stay sharp keeps them coming back.

Hard work is a constant with contributors on good teams. It is no surprise that each of these young men are still playing despite districts coming to a close.

Isaac Haney

If you have been paying attention, it won’t surprise you to hear that All-District selection, Isaac Haney has taken his team to the final four in class 1. Dora has been dropping a lot of points on opponents - most of which have been supplied by Haney. “It feels like the hard work has paid off,” said Haney. “We just have to make sure we stay together and do what we’ve been doing; put an emphasis on teamwork, defend, and jump on people out of the gate.”

As Mike Tyson famously said, “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth”. Dora has been jumping out to big leads early and will look to continue to gain that advantage. If that doesn’t work out though, Isaac says they will be ready.

Zach Howell

Springfield Catholic (28-3) played strong right out of the gate this year. That put a target on their back, but it hasn’t mattered as they are preparing to kick off their class 3 final four appearance against St. Paul Lutheran. Two of Catholic’s losses came in the Tournament of Champions, which hosts some of the best teams in the nation. Freshman Zach Howell says that if the team locks in and plays the way they can, that they are poised to win it all.

Howell says that being on one of the few teams in the state left playing is a great feeling. Unlike most teams though, he feels that they essentially hold a home court advantage in the final four. “We have played at JQH about as much as we have played on our home court this year. We’ll be familiar with the court and space, which will be very helpful.”

After putting in so much time with The Basketball Movement, Zach says he is ready for anything.

Working with Rob can be applied to anything, but on the court I am prepared skill-wise and mentally. Rob says basketball is 90 percent mental and I agree. I’ll be ready.
— Zach Howell

Kanon Gipson

The other of Springfield Catholic’s three losses came to Logan-Rogersville and sharpshooter, Kanon Gipson of The Basketball Movement and Yanders Law. LR is now preparing for their sectional tilt and Gipson says he is determined to make sure his senior teammates don’t hang up their jerseys early.

“At this point any team can get you because they are there for a reason. You just have to give it your best shot,” said Kanon. “Our mentality has been the same all season”. Gipson still has the green light from deep and says that his main takeaway from The Basketball Movement will be stepping up his defense.

Here I’ve learned how to apply more pressure but also how to handle pressure. I’ve learned to deal with every obstacle.
— Gipson's takeaways from The Basketball Movement

Good luck again to these and all of our high school athletes that are getting to continue their push towards a state title. We will be watching and hoping for the best for each of you. For those of you that are prepping for the offseason - remember the number one facility for not only staying sharp, but improving your skills on and off the floor.

Players from both Yanders Law and The Basketball Movement set to face off

With their teams gearing up for a Missouri class 5 sectional showdown, we talk to a few of our athletes as they prepare for battle.

Anton Brookshire and Elijah Bridgers play for perhaps Springfield, MO’s most prominent basketball school - Kickapoo High. They are also players that we have had the privilege of working with at The Basketball Movement and Yanders Law. Drew McMillin is another one, but he plays for a Republic squad that has exceeded expectations and finds themselves squaring off with the above Kickapoo duo in sectionals.

Kickapoo won their district title in dramatic fashion and are now hoping to go on a run. Following a workout at The Basketball Movement, we chatted with Brookshire and Bridgers to get a feel for their mindset as the stage continues to get bigger and brighter.

Perhaps no player in the state has made the splash to this point that Kickapoo’s Anton Brookshire has. That splash being a game-winning three pointer to take the district title over Nixa.

Anton Brookshire

During the final play of of the district championship game, Anton Brookshire’s adrenaline was pumping. “It was a dream come true. I knew that I would take the shot, but I also knew that I would make the shot.” Despite having such a huge moment already, Anton is poised to raise his stock, even as a sophomore as Kickapoo prepares for sectionals.

Brookshire says they have already watched a lot of film and will continue to scout Republic. He says that the team’s chemistry and bonding these last few weeks has grown exponentially and that they will be ready.

Being at The Basketball Movement almost everyday surrounded by good people has made me grow as a player and a person. The way my game has grown - I think that this is the greatest environment a player can be in.
— Brookshire on The Basketball Movement

Elijah Bridgers

Another Kickapoo player, junior Elijah Bridgers can confirm that the team is focused, determined, and willing to do whatever it takes to stay alive. “We approach every game the same way, but this time of year, you have to turn it up,” Bridgers said.

If they play the right way, Elijah says they can beat anyone. He pointed out that they have already beaten plenty of good teams this season. Asked about takeaways from Rob and The Basketball Movement, Bridgers said that the intensity will translate well into March basketball. Every time you take the floor at The Basketball Movement, you need to bring your A-game. The same will certainly apply at sectionals as well.

Drew McMillin

On the other side of things, we had the opportunity to chat with Republic’s Drew McMillin before Thursday’s big tilt. In his time with Yanders Law and The Basketball Movement, Drew said that he has learned how to deal with almost all possible situations on the basketball court. This experience will help as Republic locks in on the Kickapoo Chiefs; he says that their coach has stressed the importance of staying in the moment and focusing on taking this run one game at a time.

McMillan says that as they buckle down to face the stiffer competition that the offense has a renewed focus on getting smart shots as opposed to free-flowing ball that could lead to mistakes.

Asked about the biggest moment of the season, Drew believes the win over Ozark to seal the conference championship takes it so far. “We had lost several games before that win and it really helped us to come together,” he said.

A win over Kickapoo in the sectionals may be sweeter, but he’ll have to go through Brookshire, Bridgers, and company to do it.

Good luck to these and all area athletes as high school ball nears its conclusion. Keep and eye out as we talk with more of our successful athletes soon about their quest for a state championship.

What is your plan for getting better?

Many of you are still deep in your basketball season, be it high school, college, or the NBA. What is your plan once it’s over?

This is one of our favorite times of the year for basketball (well, if we’re being honest it’s always our favorite time of the year for basketball). Players are at their busiest because regular seasons are winding down. From high school district contests to the NBA Playoffs, seasons are plateauing.

Even though players are busy, the best-of-the-best still find time to put in extra reps. Many of the players that come through our doors this time of year are men and women that have separated themselves from the boys and girls. Shout out to those players for coming in to work after their teammates have finished practice and gone home. We see you.

We also understand that it isn’t always possible to find adequate time for these extra reps. Especially at the collegiate level on down, other factors such as school work and family take up time in the evening or sometimes early morning. Even a few sessions a month with us can make a world of difference though. Anyway - down time is coming.

It is a bit early for looking ahead to the offseason, but it certainly doesn’t hurt. Whether your team is bounced in the first round or goes all the way, the season will end eventually. Once it’s over, do you have a plan to continue getting better?

Even the top athletes will lose too much ground if they wait until the next season to pick a basketball back up. Don’t lose your edge this offseason. Continue to improve so you can come back stronger, smarter, faster, and more skilled next season. The Basketball Movement wants to help.

Even as a multi-sport athlete, you still must make time to hone your craft. Otherwise, the competition may catch up, eclipse you, or pull further ahead of you. Contact The Basketball Movement to make a plan. We want to work with you to take your game to the next level. Show up to your first practice next season and wow your coaches and teammates. Coaches quickly start forming starting lineups in their heads as well as schemes, plays, and pecking order; insert yourself into the front of their mind.

Shoot us an email at basketballmovement@yahoo.com and be sure to include a contact number. One of our coaches will be in contact with you or your athlete so we can discuss the ways we can help. Skill development is our bread and butter, but what sets us apart is our conditioning, strength training, basketball IQ enhancement, film study, nutrition and stretching tips, and wealth of basketball knowledge and expertise.

If you are ready to get serious about getting better, contact The Basketball Movement.

One-on-One: Emily Edwards

Nixa High’s junior point guard is scoring in bunches and applying the lessons she learned working with The Basketball Movement.

As a 2020 graduate, Emily Edwards has already given her verbal commitment to play basketball at the collegiate level. Though she is already primed for the next level, her drive to improve is constant. We had a chance to talk with Emily following a workout; she dished about her time at The Basketball Movement, balancing sports and school, and her future.

You can still count the Nixa lady’s losses on just one hand at this point in the season. A lot of that is due to stellar play at the point guard position from Edwards. She says that the team has all the right pieces and should go far.

Edwards describes herself as a scoring point guard because she is excellent shooting off the dribble and drilling open triples. She still loves to distribute and has rounded into an offensive threat on-and-off the ball. When asked what she was doing to take her game to the next level, she explained that she is “always working on D“ and “getting better off the ball by using screen and cuts.” Her game is getting love inside-and-out as she strives to improve her range as well as finishing around the rim.

Emily Edwards at The Basketball Movement

Asked how she originally hooked up with Rob Yanders and The Basketball Movement, Emily recalled three or four years back hearing several local players talking about their time here. Once she tried out The Basketball Movement for herself, she kept coming back. Emily is the kind of driven athlete that we at The Basketball Movement love to have coming through our doors.

We asked her what her biggest takeaways have been in her time with Rob and The Basketball Movement. The answer was not far off from what we have heard from other athletes, but it is always music to our ears:

It’s shown me how hard you have to work to get better - which has been paying off. Everything there has to be done right every time, which can be applied to all other practices and everything else.
— Emily Edwards

Boys and girls, men and women, Rob has worked with athletes of all ages, but the messages are consistent. Working hard is incredibly important, but working the right way is just as important. The athletes like Emily Edwards that truly understand this concept and put in the time are the ones that can continue to take their game to the next level - which Emily is.

What’s next

Edwards has verbally committed to Rockhurst University in Kansas City. She said that she visted the campus and loved it, the coaches, and the program. She was also impressed with the quality of the pre-med program, signalling her drive to succeed in multiple facets of life.

To even think about a pre-med path, you have to be a driven, confident student. It is not surprising that Edwards fits this bill. We asked her for any advice for our other athletes as they strive to balance school, basketball, and anything else like deciding on a college, major, and so-forth.

Keep working hard in all areas. If you love it, do it. Make sure to remain efficient with your time - stuff like doing as much homework as you can before practice. Of course also enjoy everything you do and just have fun.
— Edwards on school/sports balance

As she continues to be a catalyst for the Nixa Eagles offense, Emily will undoubtedly remain strong in character and drive. We are thrilled to have been a part of her journey to this point and hope to remain a part for years to come. She is an excellent example of where The Basketball Movement can take you.

To step up you or your athlete’s game on and off the court, contact The Basketball Movement at basketballmovement@hotmail.com and we can help take you to the next level!

One-on-One: Writer Wil Harrington

As blogger, reporter, and social media manager, Wil Harrington’s role is expanding with The Basketball Movement and Yanders Law.

A little over a year ago, I (@WilHarrington) started writing blog posts for The Basketball Movement. Robert Yanders had been a family friend for many years, so our connection went back to when I was in grade school. I remember meeting Robert when he was playing for Barry Hinson’s Missouri State Bears - He gave me a practice jersey and took my parents and I on a tour of the locker room and facilities.

From late grade school through jr. high, I worked out with Robert at the facility that would later become The Basketball Movement. I didn’t know then what visions Robert had for that facility or his own post-playing career. If the gym would have been what it is today, perhaps I would have been inspired to go all the way to the NBA… Being more than 5 foot 8 with better handles may have helped too.

Rob’s passion for the game was intense then, but may be even more so now. I remember those workouts and pretending I needed to use the restroom as an excuse to go dry heave in privacy. I wouldn’t go on to do big things playing the game; it wasn’t in the cards.

However, those workouts did allow me to be a solid contributor for a small, but good high school team. I also applied the work ethic to become a two-time all-state baseball player and honor student. I had the confidence to ask out the prettiest girl in school at 15, which worked out, because at 27 she is my wife and mother of my son. Robert was at my wedding - a no-brainer for someone who helped shape my life more than he knew.

I am incredibly grateful and excited to have the opportunity to help Rob in his business as he impacts the lives of so many young men and women.

Working with The Basketball Movement and Yanders Law

You would be hard-pressed to find an independent contractor that is more vested in the well-being of a client than I am for Robert and his businesses. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to share in their successes and help to rally after potential missteps. Even on such a part-time basis, getting to see what is happening at The Basketball Movement is special.

Screenshot_20190127-122412_Instagram.jpg

Robert said he was impressed by my work at Thunderous Intentions writing about the Oklahoma City Thunder. He invited me to come to The Basketball Movement and we discussed the work I could do with his blog. Next, I took over the blog for Yanders Law as well. Now, I’m managing his Facebook and Twitter pages, interviewing his athletes and prospects, writing proposals, doing email campaigns, and yes, still blogging.

In Rob’s words, we have a connection that comes very easily because I fully understand his mindset. He is passionate and determined, which are words that he chose to describe me as well.

I’ve known Wil all the way back to skill workouts we did when he was a kid. I could tell that he could do anything he set his mind to. I know that his parents brought him up with possibilities to have so much, but he absolutely works for everything he has and everything he wants going forward. He is a man among boys in basketball writing.
— Rob Yanders

Rob says that he is thrilled with the direction The Basketball Movement is heading in. With big moves in 2019 such as partnering with Coach Craig Smith, promoting Sly Yanders, expanding my role, and fully utilizing his media team, there is plenty of reason for excitement.

Thanks for reading my stuff for The Basketball Movement and Yanders Law - it is excellent to have this content for Rob, but it also means a lot to me, personally as I take great pride in my work. I am thrilled to be dedicating time to working in a more creative space.

Keep clicking around here to discover more of what The Basketball Movement has to offer and be sure to follow us across all social media platforms to ensure that you don’t miss a thing. Thanks for reading, and here is to another big year at The Basketball Movement!

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Day - The Basketball Movement

Today is an excellent day to take time to appreciate what we have and reflect on how far we have come. The Basketball Movement wants to remind everyone to be thankful.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a titan of his time, albeit soft-spoken and humble. Our country sets this holiday aside as a reminder of his bravery and sacrifice that helped countless generations. He was not alone, as there are many civil rights heroes that deserve our remembrance on this and all days.

All industries, academic institutions, sports, organizations of every kind, and more have deeply felt the impact of the civil rights movement over the years. As a basketball organization, we clearly see the impact of ends to segregation and discrimination based on race.

The game has had many pioneers and is still seeing more all the time - even today. These pioneers are not always players - we see female coaches and officials making incredible strides at all levels of the game as well as global growth and inclusion for individuals of all colors and creeds.

The Basketball Movement’s Founder, Rob Yanders is thrilled to be a face of change for his community as well. Through sports, he is striving for growth, inclusion, and encouragement for all.

MLK and the NBA

Every year, the NBA does a fantastic job of covering MLK Day around the league. There are games running all day, televised starting this morning.

Besides the games, they include stories of the league’s early pioneers all the way up to current players. All-day basketball broken up by positive messages and reverence makes for some great TV, especially if you are off for the day. Below is the day’s TV schedule:
(All times shown in Central)

11:30AM OKC @ NYK -NBA TV

2:00PM ORL @ ATL - NBA TV

4:30PM NOL @ MEM - TNT

7:00PM HOU @ PHI - TNT

9:30PM GSW @ LAL - TNT

Enjoy the basketball and remember what it took to bring it to you. This country has many figures to look back at and appreciate, but today belongs to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.!

Robert Yanders' stock raisers at the Tournament of Champions

The 2019 Tournament of Champions has multiple nationally ranked prospects. There is always room to grow, and Robert Yanders has noted a few players that have raised their stock.

With two days down and one to go, Southwest Missouri has seen some of the best basketball teams and players the country has to offer. Some of these guys are already ranked pretty highly - including the nation’s top prospect - James Wiseman.

If you are number one, your stock can’t go up. For every single other player however, there is always at least one more step you can take to raise stock.

With such an impressive array of talent, the Tournament of Champions is an ideal spot for iron to sharpen iron. There is no better time to outwork and outpace your competitors than when going head-to-head. The Basketball Movement’s Founder, Robert Yanders has selected a few guys from the first two nights of action that have raised there stock.

Jared Jones - McEachern

In the McEachern vs. Shadow Mountain game last night, all eyes were on Jaelen House vs. Sharife Cooper. McEachern came out on top to advance to the Chamiponship tonight, but it was a bumpy ride. Jared Jones was a steady presence for the team, blocking multiple shots and putting in 12 points with big plays at the right time.

The Northwestern commit was quiet night one, but his play in game two against an even better squad was noteworthy. His athleticism, strong defense, and knack for a big stage earn him a spot among Rob’s stock raisers.

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Alyn Breed - McEachern

Joining Jones on the way to the championship tonight is his teammate - SG Alyn Breed. Has done an excellent job of taking pressure off of his fellow backcourt players. He has 20 total points through the first couple of games, but has done an excellent job on the perimeter and is playing good defense.

His athleticism allows him to play bigger than his 6’3” frame, and he is not afraid to scrap for boards. He has heard from some smaller schools in the Northeast, but has the looks of an underrated prospect.

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Noel Coleman - Sunrise Christian

Meeting McEachern in the championship with be Sunrise Christian Academy. Sunrise has some big names, but the offense starts with PG Noel Coleman.

Coleman is listed at 6’1” but has relatively nice length and explosiveness. He is a solid distributor on a deep and talented team - he deserves to be getting more attention at the collegiate level.

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Jovan Blacksher - Shadow Mountain

Grand Canyon commit, Jovan Blacksher has been in his bag all weekend. When he isn’t keeping the ball on a string, he is unleashing a barrage of threes like he did last night. His three triples in a row kept Shadow Mountain hanging tough, though they eventually fell to McEachern.

His well-rounded, yet scoring-oriented game actually reminds a bit of his coach, former NBA player, Mike Bibby.

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Zach Howell - Springfield Catholic

The Basketball Movement gym rat, Zach Howell looked good last night and has been showing that with minutes, he can be a great contributor, even on an already good team. Catholic played a great game last night despite the outcome. Part of that renewed vigor coming off a big night one loss was provided by Howell, whose outside shooting and competitive fire were big for the Irish.

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That’s it for Robert Yanders’ stock raisers from the first two nights of action. Ahead of tonight’s big games, dunk contest, and more, be sure to follow Rob Yanders on Instagram to be the first to see his picks for the Tournament of Champions fab five. See you tonight.

The League is underway at The Basketball Movement

The League tips off with a pair of games between 5th and 6th grade boys and girls teams. The energy is electric in one of the area’s top basketball facilities.

Both gyms are filled with the sounds of balls bouncing, shoes squeaking, and coaches already working hard to fire up their teams. The Basketball Movement is the perfect location for this jamboree-style monthly tourney. We are off to a hot start, but Rob Yanders’ wheels are already turning on how to grow The League.

Today’s games will be running all day between 5th and 6th grade boys and girls. We will be incorporating broader age groups in future events in The League.

The opening games feature Yanders Law vs. MO Aces in the east gym and Fair Grove vs. SW Kings in the west gym. The SW Kings are bringing it early, showing out with length, athleticism and grit. We are keeping stats and will be giving shoutouts to teams and players that came to play.

Make sure you are following us on Twitter and Instagram and give us a “Like” on Facebook to make sure you are keeping up with all the action.

The Basketball Movement coaches and staff are all sporting The League gear, with more and more players rocking the new t-shirts and other swag as well. Though the teams are here to compete, there is great rapport between the parents, players, and coaches. We say it quite a bit, but the sense of community and teamwork is alive and well here at The Basketball Movement.

Talent is certainly on display between these young players - we are thrilled to have such great teams here showing out. If you have a team that you think is deserving of a spot in one of our upcoming events - Give us a shout at basketballmovement@yahoo.com and we will be happy to hear you out.

Stay tuned for more!

Coach Sly Yanders becomes The Basketball Movement Project Manager

2019 is going to be a big year for The Basketball Movement. One important step is promoting Sly Yanders to Project Manager.

Anyone that has stepped foot through the doors of The Basketball Movement has likely seen Sly Yanders hard at work. Founder Rob Yanders’ brother, Sly has been there every step of the way as The Basketball Movement has grown from a couple of empty gyms into the premier basketball training facility in this part of the country.

One of the greatest gifts you can give is time. Sly has dedicated massive amounts of time to our organization. From painting, scrubbing the floor, and other behind-the-scenes work to coaching and training every day, Sly Yanders’ commitment to The Basketball Movement cannot be overstated. Rob says that being there through the lows has helped Sly to learn so much along his path, which has fully prepared him for his new role as Project Manager.

Time alone is not the reason that Sly is coming into this new role with the business. He is the ultimate candidate for a role in which he occasionally needs to reign in or help direct his brother, Rob.

I’m not sure anyone knows me quite like Sly. Him being a part of my business has been a gift and a curse, because things can occasionally get personal when trying to balance business and blood. We are in a great place right now, and the time is right to give him this title.
— Rob Yanders

The key to managing a family relationship in business is to allow it to bend, but not break. Despite adversity, Rob and Sly have remained allies at all times.

“I’m not going to be able to roll with every one of his ideas just because we are brothers” Rob said. “That said, no one knows my vision and what I want for The Basketball Movement like Sly does.” Sly has already been unofficially helping to manage Rob and his operations for a long time. The trust and track record of demonstrated excellence makes the timing of this move perfect.

Sly will take some things of off Rob’s plate by handling many of the day-to-day operations of The Basketball Movement. He will continue to operate as part of Rob’s braintrust, providing ideas and challenging the status quo. Naturally as Project Manager, he will play a major role in all events conducted by The Basketball Movement.

When asked about why he has chosen to dedicate everything to The Basketball Movement, Sly focused on two things: Brotherhood and faith.

“There is no one I would rather have spent all of this time with” Sly said. “Getting to work alongside my brother while we help kids and use what we love to build a better world for future generations… that is why I do it.”

Brother or not, Sly says that it is easy to follow a leader like Rob Yanders.

I have faith in Rob and the direction he is taking his business. It is easy to believe in The Basketball Movement and where it is going because I have already seen where it has been and where it is now. Watching Rob over the years, has given me plenty of proof that he will do everything he sets out to do.
— Sly Yanders

Sly is a man of faith and was quick to point out that men were not intended to be alone. A partnership is strongest when both parties completely believe in the relationship. Sly is honored to have the opportunity to grow in his brother’s business. The business is likewise very fortunate to have a Project Manager like Sly Yanders.

In his time working with his brother, Sly says that he has learned a lot from Rob’s commitment, dedication, grit, and desire to serve others. These infectious traits are helping to form a team that is one of the best in the business on and off the court. The Basketball Movement’s new Project Manager embodies all of these things as well. Congratulations, Sly!

The Basketball Movement's first partnership - Craig Smith

The Basketball Movement is adding even more strength, this time through its partnership with the one-and-only Craig Smith.

Sharing is not always easy. It is a lesson that we have all struggled with at times. It is a lesson that The Basketball Movement’s Founder, Rob Yanders is teaching at home and in the gym. It is also something that he is learning to do himself with a business he started and built into a success.

Letting someone in on an organization you started solo is more than a business decision. To Rob, The Basketball Movement is his baby - not on the level of his actual family of course, but something that he has dedicated blood, sweat, tears, and countless hours to build. That tells you how he must feel about his new partner, Craig Smith.

Yanders has said that The Basketball Movement is a character-based organization. Coach Craig and his family have made it abundantly evident to Rob over the years that they hold the same values not only in basketball, but in life. Rob described Craig as a family man that is all about sacrificing for others. You can tell a lot by how a man treats his family, which greatly helped Rob in this decision.

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Rob and Craig established a friendship around seven years ago. From coaching against each other to just talking basketball, it was quickly evident that they had a shared passion for the game. Rob invited Craig to his facility to just watch his players and soak in his brand of basketball. Coach Craig recalls feeling very at home in The Basketball Movement environment. “We had a similar vision - I knew it would be easy to grow together”, Smith recalled.

In talking to Craig Smith, he gave two strong reasons that he decided to become involved with The Basketball Movement:

Number one: I’ve always felt a need to help kids feel welcome and have the ability to pursue their goals. I love the game and like when it is played the right way; there is no better place for that than The Basketball Movement.

Number two: I grew up in a house that was completely open to the community. I desire to be in a position to spread love to others in the same way.
— Craig Smith

For Craig, this partnership is a dream come true, as he says he was destined to coach and be around basketball in any way possible. He recalled being five years old, watching teams play at the local high school. His Dad would play “What are they running?” with him, so he has been dissecting offenses nearly his whole life.

After playing in high school, Craig was more academically driven in college, though he never left the sport of basketball. He recalls working camps like crazy and getting close to and picking the brain of every basketball mind he could (a list including names like Norm Stewart and John Calipari).

His desire to surround himself with great basketball minds and dive completely into the sport is what makes a pairing with Rob Yanders perfect.

This partnership has been a while in the making. Rob says that they have really been testing the waters over the last year with Craig coaching Yanders Law teams, facilitating workouts, and much more. “For 365 days straight, Coach’s passion and commitment to the game has been clear. He brings a lot to the game on and off the court. Craig is all-in, so I am too”, said Rob.

Craig Smith is a fantastic coach, mentor, family man, and friend (he is also a pretty good follow on Twitter @CoachCraigYL). Rob is confident that he will make for a top-notch partner as well. Bringing in such a wealth of basketball knowledge into an already thriving business is a recipe for success.

Congratulations to Craig Smith on becoming a partner with The Basketball Movement. Congrats also to Rob and his business for landing a great man and basketball guru. Keep an eye out for even more good things to come from The Basketball Movement, which is stronger than ever.

Community - The Basketball Movement

Following the conclusion of the Angels of the Hardwood event, we examine the importance of community.

Community may have different meanings depending on who you ask. Communities can be big or small. They can consist of families, neighbors, peers, cities, or regions. Whatever you consider to be your community, understand that you and everyone else in it has a responsibility to make it better.

Not everyone will contribute in strengthening a community; not everyone can. That is why it is imperative that individuals such as yourself step up to the plate. Take pride in where you are from.

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Angels of the Hardwood 🙏🙏🏀🏀

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Any community that you have been a part of has helped to shape you into the person you are today. However, you aren’t the only one. Other individuals in your community have also been shaped by some common factors. Most importantly, others such as children are still being shaped while growing in those communities.

Widespread aid - helping on a large scale is fantastic, but not always easy. Giving back to the communities that helped shape you is an excellent way to make an immediate impact. The more you care about the people and places you are giving back to, the greater impact you will likely have.

At the Angels of the Hardwood event, The Basketball Movement and Yanders Law gave back to the local community in the form of Nike Elite basketballs, Nike shoes, free lessons, motivation, and camaraderie. We were able to turn something we are passionate about into a positive for our community and the results were amazing.

You are likely big into basketball yourself, but there are so many other ways to give back. If your talents are in music, use that to lift spirits at a local veteran’s home. If you are great with kids, get involved with after school programs. Not sure what to do? Find a great organization such as Convoy of Hope - they can always use help packing food and hygiene kits that help families all over.

However you do it, keep your community’s needs in your thoughts and allow those thoughts to become action whenever possible.

Check out more on Angels of the Hardwood here and keep following along as we use basketball to unite people and bring about positive change.

The Basketball Movement - New basketball equipment

Rob Yanders and The Basketball Movement deliver on more promises as they optimize the workout space in the north gym.

Stepping foot into The Basketball Movement facility, attention is instantly drawn to the vibrant red, white and, blue of the new court floors. Beyond that, the scent of hardwood, sound of balls bouncing, and chatter of basketball minds at work flood the senses.

It is easy to get caught up in this basketball wonderland, but on the other side of the floor, you will also notice where much of the trench-work goes on.

The devices lining the northernmost wall of the facility allows our athletes to work out in a professional atmosphere using basketball-centric equipment. The machines are all low-impact, ideal for basketball workouts. There are TVs with sports running all the time, free weights, balls and cones, and more.

Founder Rob Yanders broke down some of what The Movement is offering in his post below:

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Check it out!! The Basketball Movement!!

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As Rob mentions, the equipment at this facility mirrors that of professional facilities from coast-to-coast. LeBron James’ workouts always seem to include images of him on his Versaclimber, using medicine balls, or putting in work on a bike. This seems like a good time for a cheesy, but accurate call to action…

Work out like a pro at The Basketball Movement.

This isn’t lip-service. The Basketball Movement is genuinely in the business of creating a professional level training facility in the heart of the country that is accessible to all.

Whether you are looking to prepare for Jr. High basketball tryouts or gearing up to play professional basketball, you can guarantee that The Basketball Movement has something for everyone.

The Movement has much more to offer, so keep clicking around here to check it out. Follow us on Instagram for more clips like those above, including Rob taking you on a tour around the facility’s film room, barber shop, and more.

Playing time - A basketball balancing act

Year after year, playing time is one of the top issues on the minds of players (and their families).

Whether it is justified or not, many players find themselves not getting the time on the court they desire. There are situations in which it comes down to coach oversights, preferences, or bias. Almost always though, a player can increase their playing time by stepping up their game.

I don’t complain about playing time. My job is to play so well the coach can’t sit me.
— Shane Battier

All of the practice and effort that goes into basketball comes together in games, so that is why it can be so frustrating to not get many minutes - if any at all. No-matter the reason for limited minutes, the frustration is understandable.

That being said, many of your minutes are truly up to you. A coach controls substitutions, but you control your abilities. In a game situation, a coach’s mind is going 100 miles per hour. Many of their decisions are based on split-second instinct. They go to players and schemes that they are comfortable with and make sense in specific situations.

During your time on the court, time in practice, and even time off the court, present your best self to your coach. Get noticed by your play and demeanor - this will place you more prominently in your coach’s mind. Naturally, this will pay off when those split-second decisions happen in games.

The best thing you can do to increase playing time is simple - step up your game. Just practicing with your team is not going to separate you from the pack. The most improvement often happens in the offseason.

Not only getting up shots, but going through basketball specific workouts like those offered by The Basketball Movement are the kind of thing that separates a team’s best players from the rest.

It can be tough to dig yourself out of the hole that is the bench, so it will take patience and determination. Overcoming adversity is something else that helps to separate the strongest from the pack, however. It is a challenge worth taking on if you are serious about getting more minutes.

Parents - It can be tough to accept sometimes, but this isn’t your battle. Coaching decisions are not yours to make and you must understand that you have blind spots when it comes to your own boys and girls. If coaching actions seem abusive in any way, it is of course time to step up. With issues such as playing time however, just support your children and be willing to help them in any way possible.

As mentioned, The Basketball Movement is a tremendous resource in the Midwest for scenarios just like these. If a player is serious about improving in a hurry, The Basketball Movement is the perfect place to start at any level of the game.

Remember you can contact us anytime here!