The Basketball Academy was started with one goal; to provide basketball programs for all ages and skill levels in Toronto. For the past 7 years our vision has been to teach to the highest level of every group. With encouragement and positive re-enforcement we believe that each player can push out of their comfort zone and achieve their potential. Our coaches continue to research and learn the newest and best drills being run by the premier coaches around the world. Through years of coaching, The Basketball Academy has developed a unique way of teaching players both the fundamental skills and the concepts of the game. 

Our Teaching Method

Key Concepts

Kids basketball training is one of the hardest things to teach. Many players develop great fundamental skills at a young age. They can dribble shoot and pass, but they have trouble translating these skills to the game. This never surprises our coaches as most players never learn what we call “Key Concepts”. Through layering our coaches introduce basic “Key Concepts” and use these as the building blocks as players move forward with The Basketball Academy.


  • What to do when you first catch the ball – Square up and Triple Threat
  • Being strong with the basketball – using pivots and ball placement to protect the ball from defenders
  • Seeing the floor – using pivots to see the entire court

Once players have been introduced to our “Key Concepts” we can begin to teach the beautiful game of basketball:


  • Court Spacing – players are introduced to the spacing on the court and how to make sure players are working together to maintain that space
  • Getting Open – Players learn how to cut efficiently while keeping the court spaced to create scoring and ball movement opportunities
  • Cutting and Filling – Players learn how to pass, cut and keep the court spaced out. As players move up with The Basketball Academy they are introduced to screens, hand offs and other ways to help their teammates get open
Program Development

Each player must be equipped with certain fundamental skills before understanding the concepts we teach. These skills include:


  • Triple Threat – The athletic position all players should use when catching the basketball
  • Proper layup footwork
  • Ball Handling – players learn the various stances and techniques to use while dribbling
  • Pivoting – players learn how to use their footwork to open up passing lanes
  • Passing – players learn how to pass to where players are going, rather than to a stationary player

Meet the Coaches

Justin Holmes has been running basketball programs since 2009. He has coached with all ages and brings great energy and enthusiasm. Justin is a member of the east york basketball board of directors and coached with the U10 rep team. Justin played 5 years with U of T averaging 12ppg and leading his team in 3 point shooting.
Adam played 5 years with the U of T Varsity Blues. As a powerful force inside, Adam brings great work ethic and grittiness to our program. As an undersized forward, Adam relies on his excellent footwork, movement and strength. Adam always has a smile on his face and brings great energy and enthusiasm every time he steps on the court.
Ryan was named Ryerson team MVP in 2010-2011 and was recipient of the D.H. Craighead Award for Male Greatest Contribution to Athletics. Received both the Blue and Gold ‘R’ Awards for his contributions as a Ryerson Rams student athlete. Ryan was an assistant with the Ryerson Rams, Head Coach of the U16 Ontario Development team and currently teaches at Birchcliffe Public School.
Sage was a five year starting point guard with the University of Toronto Varsity Blues. After a standout rookie season, Sage was selected to the OUA All-Rookie Team after averaging 7ppg and leading his team in assists. Sage competed internationally in Brazil in 2012.
Sean played 3 seasons at St. Francis Xavier and competed in the CIS national championship. Sean finished his career with the University of Toronto Varsity Blues where he average 8 ppg, leading the team in bench scoring. Sean has always been a great student of the game and brings great enthusiasm and expertise to our coaching team.
Nathan was a heavily recruited high school player but his career was cut short due to multiple ACL injuries. Nathan didn’t let that stop him from being involved in basketball. He went on to be an assistant coach with the Lakehead Thunderwolves and a premiere trainer with A Game Hoops – a program which trains top talent including Kevin Pangos. Nathan joined the Basketball Academy in the summer of 2013.