Farm Bureau Donation Boosts Basketball Skills

Basketball players interested in improving their skills will have another resource at the Don Sjogren Community YMCA thanks to a recent donation.

Farm Bureau Financial Services, Phil Hinrichs, has donated a Shoot-A-Way basketball training machine to the YMCA.

The Shoot-A-Way is used by NBA teams and top college basketball programs and is now available at the YMCA in Holdrege for anyone to work on improving their shot.

“I am at the Y almost every day, and I love seeing the kids in there shooting,” Hinrichs said. “I wanted to make it a better experience for them. Hopefully, this will get kids more excited about the game.”

The Shoot-A-Way fits around an existing basketball hoop and instantly rebounds a made or missed shot giving a direct return pass for another shot. It fires up to 1,800 shots per hour and can be used by up to 12 players at a time for an intense workout in a short time. Because it offers a faster rebounding method, players get more repetition on their practice shots and can improve their shots in less time.

“The shooting machine helps kids refine their skills more efficiently,” Hinrichs said. “They can spend more time shooting and less time chasing basketballs!”

Holdrege High School basketball players already have experience with the Shoot-A-Way as the school has one just like the one Hinrichs donated to the Y.

“My son (Jackson) uses it at school regularly,” Hinrichs said. “Having one at the Y gives kids another option that might be more available.”

Joel Pelster, Sports Program Director at the YMCA, said the machine is capable of tracking shot percentages and tracks makes and misses from each position a player shoots from. It also has an app that can be downloaded and connected to the machine to track personal shot information. The app also features shooting workouts.

Pelster said the Shoot-A-Way will be available in the Y gym whenever the gym is open with no programs going on. Pelster is planning a training class this fall to teach middle and high school students how to use the machine.

“Phil and Kim (Farm Bureau) have been so amazing with helping out the youth programs at the YMCA over the years,” Pelster said. “This is just another thing to add to the list of wonderful things the Hinrichs have done for the Y. The machine will have an impact on so many kids over the next decade-plus.”

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