Joseph Bock, a retired Teledyne engineer who worked on the Surveyor Moon Landing project, has taken up a new calling during his golden years. Bock is a volunteer coach of Benchwarmers Basketball at Cheviot Hills Recreation Center in Los Angeles. His goal is to help less athletic kids have an opportunity to enjoy basketball, improve their skills, and appreciate the sport, a chance Joe missed out on as a child.
Bock says, “When I was a kid I warmed the bench. I was rarely picked to play on a basketball team because of my poor coordination.” After retiring from Teledyne in 2005, he decided to help young children who also warmed benches. He took kinesiology classes at California State University, Northridge (CSUN) until he really understood the science and psychology behind teaching sports to children.
While taking classes at CSUN, Bock decided to help adults, so he taught a Benchwarmer-like class at Santa Monica College that encouraged non-athletic adult basketball lovers to get in there and play the game. No worries. Everyone played.
Bock envisions Benchwarmer Basketball to go international. He’s encouraging like-minded coaches and sports enthusiasts to replicate his program—not only in basketball, but baseball, soccer, football… You name it. And he’s getting some impressive results. Recently, Bock was approached by Dyspraxia Kids Australia, a non-profit resource and support group for individuals and families with children living with Dyspraxia, a developmental coordination disorder. They are considering implementing Bock’s Benchwarmer program throughout Australia.
The Benchwarmer mission is to promote access to team sports for all kids by providing a nurturing environment where children, who are less athletic, can thrive and feel they belong. Benchwarmer’s focus is on sportsmanship, education, and deliberate practice.
If you or someone you know is interested in starting a Benchwarmer program in your community, check out this video:
Interested? Joe Bock would like for you to contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org to help you get started.