Have you ever wondered why the basket is 10 feet above the floor of a basketball court?

You can get a really good clue by taking a close look at this interior view of a vintage Y.M.C.A. gymnasium.

Vintage YMCA gymnasium interior
Did you figure it out yet?

Look at the running track that circles the old gym. The architectural plans for all early Y.M.C.A. facilities were uniform, and called for the running track to be placed 10 feet off of the gym floor in every gym.

So when James Naismith nailed his peach basket to the running track — in Springfield, Massachusetts in 1891 — the official height of a basketball basket thenceforth became 10 feet.

I know what you’re thinking. If it weren’t for that damn architect, then I could still dunk!

Don’t worry, I’m saying the same thing! :-)

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