Collin Castellaw was working as a teacher when he began to feel like he wasn’t fully using his talents in his work. It wasn’t that he didn’t love teaching (that was definitely a passion point for him), it was that he was most fired up about teaching basketball. And that was something he couldn’t do full time in a traditional school setting. To make his dreams pop, he’d have to create his own program, but he was worried it wouldn’t work out.
Collin’s wife, Danae, however, was immediately in full support of the new venture for their young family, even if it came with some uncertainty. She and Collin met at 12, and while for some couples getting together that young would have made life feel stagnant, Danae always pushed her partner (and herself) to continue to grow. When Collin started talking about teaching basketball on the internet, she encouraged him to go for it.
It wasn’t exactly a slam dunk right away. At the time, utilizing an online platform for instruction made Collin a bit of a pioneer. The first website the duo started totally failed. Collin thought about giving up, but Danae cheered him on.
“She was so incredibly supportive,” he says. “My wife told me, ‘You can’t just stop after the first roadblock.’”
Danae was always willing to make sacrifices to get the business going. They moved into a smaller house, and when they had their first child, Danae took on much of the family and parenting responsibilities.
“She worked her tail off while I tried to build this,” Collin says. “She carried the torch for the family.”
The couple’s hard work paid off. The videos from Collin’s network, Shot Mechanics Basketball, now have over 85 million views. Collin is finally able to do what he’s passionate about — help young athletes all over the world cultivate their basketball skills. And none of it would have happened without Danae taking on so much as a mom when he was knee-deep in a start-up business. Teamwork literally made the dream work.
Danae’s constant love and support was a gift that she gave to Collin every day. One that he will (happily) spend a lifetime trying to repay. And this Mother’s Day, Collin is excited to give Danae a sentimental gift to say thank you. With everything she did to make their family’s dreams come true, it’s important to him that she knows that he saw every sacrifice and appreciates her for it.
“It was her vision,” he says. “And her belief in me that made it work.”