What is the Upward Sports Program?

Upward Sports is the world’s largest Christian-based children's sports league. Last year, nearly 550,000 children in 48 U.S. states and Canada participated in Upward Sports Leagues and Camps hosted by more than 2,400 churches.

How is Upward Sports different from other youth sports organizations?
Upward Sports provides a fun sports experience based on healthy competition for kids, teaching skills for the sports arena and values for life. Upward Sports creates a positive environment for kids to learn sport skills without the pressure of “win-at-all-cost” leagues. With supportive coaches, equal playing time and a family-friendly schedule, Upward Sports Leagues are fun for the whole family.

Who can participate in Upward Sports?
Each year one million people around the world play, coach, referee or volunteer in one of the Upward Sports Leagues especially designed for K through eighth-grade boys and girls. Stanford Baptist Upward Sports is honored to be one of the Upward Sports Leagues across the U.S. and Canada, children and volunteers of any faith or no faith are welcome to participate.

What will a child take away from his or her experience in an Upward Sports Program?
Participants gain both athletic skills and values for success on and off the court - including sportsmanship, teamwork, integrity and respect. Young athletes enjoy valuable game-time experience that improves their skills and builds healthy self-confidence as they learn from coaches who care. But Upward Sports is even more than a game-day experience, providing youth with a supportive community and fun activities to help them develop character.

What if my child has never played sports or cheered before?
No problem, we are excited for he/she to join us!!! Stanford Baptist Upward Sports is set up to serve all skill levels in each sport. We have children that were born with a basketball or pom-pom in-hand and we have children that have never dribbled a ball or shouted. Stanford Baptist Upward Sports is the place for them!

How is it possible to give every child equal playing time?
Upward Sports offer competitive games through a drafting system created to balance talent on each team. Combined with a unique substitution system, this enables us to provide kids with equal playing time over the course of a season.

Does a child’s family have to be a member of a church in order to for him/her to participate?
No, Upward Sports is a community-based kids sports program most frequently hosted by our church. Children and volunteers of any faith – or no faith – participate in Upward Sports.

How are teams drafted?
Teams are drafted to be as evenly matched as possible. This is so no one team can dominate league play. Teams are drafted by the Upward League Manager (ULM); a computer-generated drafting system. The ULM uses the scores taken at assessment time to draft teams.

What do I need to do to volunteer?
Stanford Baptist Upward Sports offers a variety of volunteer outlets. Your first step is to contact our League Director at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. He will work with you on the best fit for you – whether it is coach, referee, scorers table, prayer partner, or any of our other volunteer needs. Coaches and referees will need to complete a coach/referee application and submit to a background check (paid for by Stanford Baptist Upward Sports).

How much of a time commitment is needed to participate?
During the recreation season there is one practice per week and games on Saturdays for eight weeks. There is a total of twelve practices and eight games.

When are practices scheduled?
There is one practice per week, lasting one hour in length and one and a half hours for our 5th grade through 8th grade basketball. Practices are scheduled Monday, Tuesday, or Thursday evenings; the day of the week will be determined once teams are formed. Participants cannot choose which night they practice but can indicate one night that they are unable to practice when signing up to participate. Practices for Cheerleaders are also once per week for one hour.

When are Stanford Baptist Upward Sports’ games played?
All games are played on Saturdays typically between 8 am and 3 pm. The first game of the season is scheduled for January 6th and will continue through February with the last game scheduled for February 24th. Games are one hour in length. Cheerleaders typically cheer for an entire game, possibly two games in a row.

Where are the games played?
Stanford Baptist Upward Sports’ games are played at our two Christian Life Center located behind Stanford Baptist Church, 204 Church St., Stanford, KY 40484.

How much does it cost to participate?
The fee per child for the 2017-18 basketball and cheerleading season is $60.

What does the fee include?
The registration fee includes a reversible Upward jersey, and a t-shirt for underneath. Cheerleaders will receive a cheerleading skirt, top, megaphone and pom-poms. The fee also helps cover the cost of the end-of-season awards (every player will receive an end of year gift). Team photos and individual photos will be taken pre-season and game day photos will be available but this is an optional additional expenses. Any profits from the photos will be donated to Stanford Baptist Upward Sports’ mission for the season.

What is the Inclement Weather Policy?
Stanford Baptist Upward Sports typically follows the Lincoln County School System when it comes to cancellations. As soon as a decision is made, it will be posted online and we will send an email, and a phone call to our parents & coaches. Please be careful and if the road conditions are dangerous, don't chance it.