Established in 1995, Upward Sports is the world’s largest Christian youth sports provider. Upward Sports is the only organization that offers the 360 Progression™, a uniquely designed total sports experience that adapts and expands as players grow in their personal athletic journeys. The 360 Progression™ develops total athletes mentally, athletically, spiritually, and socially – producing players who excel both on and off the field. Today, approximately 500,000 players and 120,000 leaders participate in Upward Sports Recreation and Performance programs each year.
In 2012, Upward Sports created a Performance Division known as Upward Stars. This expansion provides opportunities for young athletes to further develop their athletic skills and participate in a higher level of competition. Upward Stars programs are for young athletes ages 8-18 that have the drive and intensity to perform at a high level of competition. Upward Stars programs are led by Certified Leaders in over 40 cities across the country.
For more information on our Upward Sports programs please visit http://www.upward.org/
Promoting the Discovery of Jesus Through Sports
Upward Stars Nashville is blessed to be the largest basketball club in Nashville, operating hubs in both Williamson County & Sumner County. They provide year-round basketball opportunities for 3rd - 12th grade athletes (boys & girls), through team play &/or developmental programming (camps, clinics, 3-on-3 play, etc.). Their mission is “Promoting the Discovery of Jesus Christ Through Sports.”
Expanding Our Reach (Growth): Launching in January, 2014, Upward Stars Nashville has experienced exponential growth on an annual basis. In 2017, the club expanded to 37 spring/summer tournament teams (50 spring/summer teams in 2018). Approx. 1,000 athletes attended tryouts in 2018 (spring/summer/fall). Upward Stars Nashville will connect with approx. 2,000 families in 2018 (1,200 families in 2017).
Focus on a “More Than” Experience: The club attributes the aforementioned growth to placing a high priority on providing a “More Than” experience. Upward Stars has the desire to impact athletes mentally, athletically, spiritually, and socially. This impact is seen both ON and OFF the court.
Coaches & Character Lessons: One way in which the “off the court” impact is accomplished is through spoken character lessons. Their coaching staff has shared approximately 1,000 character lessons with its participants over the past two years at team practices and/or at clinics/camps. These lessons are based on Scripture and correlate with sports and every-day life. Character lesson topics, just to list a few, have included: Teamwork, Wisdom, Leadership, Perseverance, Effort, Discipline, Integrity, Courage, Commitment, and Service.
Putting a Quality Product on the Court: From a sports’ credibility perspective, the club's 2018 spring/summer tournament teams competed at a high-level, having won 32 Championships, earning 44 runner-up finishes, & 40+ semi-final appearances in national/regional/& local tournaments (AAU Nationals, NCAA Live Period Events, HoopSeen Events; Phenom Hoops Events, etc.).
Parent, athlete, and coach feedback continues to be very positive, as the approach to intentionally making a difference in an athlete's life both ON and OFF the court has been well received. Below is some feedback shared from the parents of athletes who participated in their program over the past few years:
"Your attention to detail...to the lessons that focus on character and Christian principles you share are top notch."
"Your Upward Stars' coaches have had a HUGE impact on my boys in a very short period of time. Is basketball important in my household? YES!! Are strong, male Godly influences in my sons' lives more important? YES!!"
"Thank you for making Upward Stars a great experience and opportunity to put Biblical truth into the hearts of all our boys. I hope Upward Stars continues to thrive in Middle TN!"
" I just wanted to take the opportunity to let you know how impactful your program has been for my boys and how much I appreciate all that you and the coaches do for these kids... it means more to me than I can even explain, to see adult men pouring into their lives in a positive way.... They have been so excited every time they have come and absolutely love the coaches who are working with them. So, I just wanted to say thank you from the bottom of my heart for encouraging my boys, and pointing them to their Heavenly Father in the process. Please feel free to let your coaches know they ARE making a difference!
"It's an honor and a privilege to be a part of such a great organization. Thank you all for the lifelong lessons your coaching staff has planted in my son. The coaches are remarkable & my son has really bonded with all of his teammates."
" I just wanted you to know that my daughter LOVED last night's skills class. She was overjoyed afterwards and kept talking about how much fun it was. She had a sour basketball camp experience this summer and was very nervous about this academy. So thanks to Upward Stars!"
"Thanks Coach! Sports only last a short time in a young man's life, but his walk with the Lord is for an eternity!"
You can learn more about Upward Stars-Nashville by watching the short "Williamson Sportslight" video produced by the williamson source in 2014 (five minutes). You can also click the following links for more recent videos: Upward Stars' Overview and Reflections - More Than an Athlete. The "NEWS" page on the club's website features tournament championships and other spotlights (several pages of stories); the "COMMUNITY" page features how their athletes give back/serve the community.
We hope you and your athlete will choose to be a part of Upward Stars-Nashville, as they strive to impact athletes: MENTALLY, ATHLETICALLY, SPIRITUALLY, and SOCIALLY! Playing With Purpose!