American-Style Basketball 

blended with the culture and knowledge gained through 

the coaching giants in Japan.

Teaching more than 19,000 basketball players since 2011

Elitus means "Elite" + "Us", which equates to all of us becoming elite; which is quite the opposite connotation of the word Elitist. At Elitus we believe that there is strength in pulling together and uplifting everyone around us. 


The goal of Elitus Academy basketball is to spread the game of basketball in Japan and to serve as a coaching service that help raise the level of play for players that aspire to be "Elite". 


Elitus was founded by Jo Kurino, a 15-year veteran of the Japanese Pro leagues.  Jo founded the academy while a player for Mitsubishi Diamond Dolphins Nagoya and started holding training sessions and clinics in the greater Nagoya metropolitan area. The primary goal was to combine American and Japanese style of basketball with a fun twist.


 focuses its attention on planting the root of the game in Nagoya and Okinawa, we accept the challenge of making its students better while enjoying the game. We believe in thinking globally where Japan and the world can unite.,


Elitus has successfully taught more than 17,000 players through school instruction, clinics, private lessons and providing coaching support to many school basketball programs. In 2016, Japanese basketball encountered a renaissance through the birth of the B.League and there is no doubt that the game will continue to grow since it is already the 2nd most played sport in the country.

Meet Jo Kurino

Elitus Basketball Academy was founded by Jo Kurino, a 15-year veteran of the Japanese Professional leagues.  Jo founded the academy while a player for Mitsubishi Diamond Dolphins Nagoya (now known as Diamond Dolphins Nagoya) and started holding training sessions and clinics in the greater Nagoya Metropolitan area. The primary goal was to combine American and Japanese style of basketball with a fun twist, with English instruction.


Kurino arrived in Japan in 2003, as he debuted with the OSG Phoenix (now San-En Neo Phoenix) of the Japan Basketball League (JBL). During his career, he was selected to the All-Star Game and have been selected on the All-Domestic player's team on In 2005, Kurino become the first-ever selection of the inaugural Basketball Japan (BJ) League Draft, which marked the beginning of an all-professional league in Japan. 


Although he missed out on a couple of opportunities to secure a Championship, Kurino has also contributed to helping the Hiroshima Dragonflies finish as runner-ups (the franchise's best finish ever) in the All-Japan Emperor's Cup; even though it was the franchises' expansion season. He also helped The Shimane Susanoo Magic finish as runner-ups in the B2 League and gain promotion to the B1 League. In Kurino's final B.League campaign, he helped lead The Fighting Eagles Nagoya team to its first-ever 2018 B2 Central Division Title and Playoff appearance. Kurino currently plays in the Xebio Sports-sponsored 3x3.EXE Premier 3-on-3 three professional circuit.


Kurino also started working on acquiring coaching certifications during his playing career and now possesses a JBA Class-B License, which allows him to coach at the Japanese Pro ranks and a USA Basketball Youth Development Gold License.  Kurino is also a registered coach for AAU and holds certifications with the Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA)


What We Teach


We will teach pro basketball skills for the player that wants to take their game to the next level. There are players that are aiming to become pro and then there are players that want to raise their playing time with their respective teams. Due to the lack of individual instruction, it's not rare to see players get left behind.

Better players help the team improve as a whole. From such of point-of-view, Elitus places an emphasis to help players achieve their goals. 


The level exercise by youth has decreased in the modern age. And based on many people's youth, the number of children with obesity has also increased.


We at Elitus work to increase the level of exercise through basketball. We also work to provide an environment to develop mental strength and social interaction.


At Elitus Academy, we not only teach skill development but we also conduct some of the latest training including reaction training, plyometrics, dynamic stretching and jump training. We spend about 10 minutes at the beginning of work out to develop our athletes. We understand that sport science is an important factor when training our players to be the best they can.


Improvement at a certain skill takes hours and hours of training. It is said that it takes about 24 hours of practice to master a craft.  It is also said that it takes about 10,000 repetitions  in regards to muscle memory. Elitus Academy works to provide an environment where an athlete can get the individual repetitions to improve.  Also, with more and more youth sports programs decreasing, Elitus Academy can serve as the alternative for athletes to work on the game of basketball on their own time.


At Elitus Academy, we encourage seasonal sports and understand the benefits that come from multi-sports competition. We not only support our athletes so they can play other sports, but we also try and install activities and performance that come from other sports to provide a greater palette for athletes to improve.


Elitus Academy understands the importance of community outreach and community service. We have history hosted sports-related tournaments and events to uplift the local community and also encourage our athletes to serve the community. We also teach self-sufficiency and life-skills through the game of basketball. We will development not only the athlete but also the person. 


We work to help our athletes get to where they want to be. If a player aspires to make their team, we work to help them achieve such goals.  If a player's goal is to take their talents globally, we will do our best to prepare for playing in the U.S. at the next level.


At the Academy level, we encourage cultural diversity and try to provide instruction in a multi-lingual environment. 


Jo-san is a former teammate of mine during my time at Mitsubishi Electric Diamond Dolphins and I recommend Elitus Academy!


Jo teaches not only concepts but he also looks at each individual and gives pointers that only professionals can so I not only recommend the academy for beginners but also believe that intermediate players will get an opportunity to take their games to the next level. Jo is probably more Japanese than the average Japanese person so I encourage athletes to learn plenty of life skills off the court.

I highly recommend Jo-san's "Elitus Academy"!

Taizo Kawabe, Assistant Coach, Toyotsu Fighting Eagles Nagoya (B.League)


Jo Kurino is a bringing in a new tide for the growth of Japanese basketball. I not only faced him as an opponent but also have great memories of being able to coach him for three seasons at the professional level.  He is one of the hardest working players that I've coached. Jo is also one of the most knowledgeable players that I've coached. Jo is not only highly skilled but he is a student of the game and is great at teaching fundamentals. I believe Jo is one of the highly skilled technicians that can help develop the next superstar in Japan. 

I believe Jo's basketball academy can be one of the driving forces to help take Japanese basketball as a whole to the elite level. I am a believer that Jo will teach the fundamentals of the game properly and highly recommend his academy.

The presence of Jo Kurino is a must for the growth of Japanese Basketball.

Antonio Lang - Assistant Coach, UTAH JAZZ (NBA)


Jo Kurino's Elitus Academy is one of the finest places for young players to be get better. I've known "Jo" for more than a decade and the passion and professionalism he exudes is second to none. I have played with him and I have also been a quest coach as his academy.


Jo and his staff at Elitus are professional and I am sure their energy and passion will help players get to the next level. The staff at Elitus not only study the Japanese game but they are also knowledgeable about the different elements of the game from around the world. I am sure that the players will be able to learn the game using the latest practice methods, thus helping to lead a new generation of fine players in Japan.


If you are looking for an environment to learn the game in a fun environment, Elitus Academy is No.1!

Jo Kurino's Elitus Academy is one the finest for young players

that want to get better.

Walter Brown-Matsushima - Former Player, Mitsubishi Electric Diamond Dolphins Nagoya


Elitus Academy is a special program where players can learn directly from a Pro.

Players are able to go through basketball drills that the pros go through and clearly get better. It's clearly one of the finest academies that exist domestically that provide the best environment to get better.

Elitus Academy is a special program where players can learn

directly from a Pro.

Jun Nakanishi - General Manager, Rizing Zephyr Fukuoka (B.League)





TEL: (050) 5532-9245




TEL: (050) 5532-9245



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