Monday, November 25, 2013

CaptainU

Want to get recruited for college basketball? Visit CaptainU, the Facebook of college sports recruiting.

It's easy to set up. Create your profile by adding personal info, stats, pictures and videos of yourself playing high school games. Basically sell your basketball skills online. Once your profile is set up, send it out to Universities you're interested playing basketball at. It's free to start out. And a great way to get noticed by colleges outside of your state.

Check out this testimonial of a CaptainU user:


Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Don’t Call Fouls During Pick-up Games

Everyone hates the guy or girl who calls too many fouls during pick-up games. Pick-up games are meant to be played tough. This isn't the NBA, and you aren't Lebron. So you can't go complaining about every call you don't like.

And by fouls, I mean touch fouls committed on you, not by you. Not calling fouls will make you tougher and better prepared to play in real games with refs. If you can take some abuse from a bad player during a pick-up game, you’ll be that much more prepared for someone tough in a game with actual refs.

Even Kobe has to play "no blood, no foul":



By playing without calling fouls you'll develop the mindset to play through everything, which in the end will make you a stronger player. Of course, don’t let your defender take advantage of you. If you get blatantly tackled on a lay-up and don’t say anything, your teammates will probably get mad at you. But, if you get bodied at the top of the court and then drive in for the score, you’ll develop respect from the players at the courts. Remember "No blood, no foul!"

Whatever you do, don't be like this guy:


Street-Ball Lingo

Often, young players are intimidated by the pick-up games at the rec or street courts. You walk up to the court, there’s a game going on, you see players sitting around and you want to play, but you don’t know what to do.

Here’s what to do: Get some courage, walk up to someone and ask, “Who’s got next?” This basically means who is picking the players for the next game on the court. They will either say I do or point to whoever does. If no one has next then say "I've got next", which basically means you're playing next game. Keep in mind if you do call next, you may have to pick the four other players. It all depends on court rules.

If someone already has next, ask them: “You got five?” This means, do you have five players for the game? They’ll either say they don’t and will pick you up to play or will say, “Naw, we have five”. At this point, ask who’s got after them.

You'll have to know the rules to play against these guys:



Repeat this process until you found the last player with “next” and ask if they need another player. If they don’t need more players, then say:

“I got after (the name of the last guy who got next).” Example: “I got next after Mike”. Make sure you remember every ones names because next time you play, it will be easier to find out who has next. Plus, learning a few names may make you a few friends. Also, you may need to use this newly learned terminology at a summer basketball camp!

Don't play pick-up like these guys:

Monday, June 10, 2013

Best Way To Recover From An Ankle Injury

Ankle injuries are common in basketball. When we jump in the air, we’re bound to land on someone’s foot. My worst ankle injury was on a fast break and after I shot a lay-up I landed on my opponent’s foot. Felt a pop and it was probably the worst pain I’ve ever been though.

R.I.C.E is the most well-known term for ankle injury recovery. Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation. Rest as much as you can. Ice as much as you can. Keep the ankle compressed with a wrap. And elevate the ankle above the heart.


What I do a little different from some people is the ice part. Instead of resting my ankle on an ice pack or wrapping the ice bag on the ankle, I will fill up a bucket of ice water and stick my foot in it. Do this for 15 minutes in, 15 minutes out. Sounds miserable and it is. Well, it actually is only miserable for the first 5 minutes and after that your foot goes numb and can’t even feel it.



You may enjoy the numb foot because of how bad the pain is from your ankle injury. I’ve also noticed the more you do stick your foot in a bucket of ice water, the less you notice that initial 5 minutes of misery. Use the ice bucket and recover faster!

Here are some exercises to help avoid ankle injuries - Pre-Hab!:


High Tops and Athletic Soles

In addition to being a baller with fresh shoes, you also want to be a smart baller. A smart baller needs shoes that are comfortable and will prevent injuries. Wear high tops to avoid spraining your ankle. Some say high tops and low tops don’t matter. They say if you’re going to sprain your ankle, you’re going to sprain your ankle.




While I do believe that’s true for the worst ankles injuries, I don’t think it’s true for the little ankle tweaks. Sometimes you just make a wrong movement and twist your ankle a little and you can stop yourself from a complete sprain. This is where I believe high tops help prevent worse ankle injuries. Buy the high tops!



To make your shoes more comfortable, buy athletic soles. They can usually be found at any shoe store like Finish Line or Foot Locker. The cushioned sole will keep your feet in good shape for long workouts and are perfect for the long hours at a summer basketball camp! Once you wear them, you’ll never want to play without.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Avoid blisters at all costs

Bad blisters can ruin a basketball player. You always want to be able to play 100% and not get slowed down with feet pain. Just think of those quick cuts and the jumping, ouch! Make sure to break in your shoes before playing. Get rid of the stiffness in the shoe. It’s hard to tell if a shoe will cause blisters until you play in it. Don’t make your learning experience in the middle of a game!



When I was younger I always bought larger shoes because my foot was growing quite a bit every 6 months. If your shoes are larger and you’re waiting to grow into them, then double up on socks. Don’t let your foot slip around and potentially cause blisters. Still, it’s probably best to just buy shoes that fit your foot. If I had to do it again I wouldn’t have bought bigger shoes.




John Wooden, the famous UCLA basketball coach, used to sit his players down on day one of practice and teach them the importance of not getting blisters. He even said the secret to his success and 10 national championships was the way his players wore their socks. His tip for not getting blisters, no wrinkles. Put your sock up tight, feel your heel, sides of your feet, and ankle. Make sure there are no wrinkles! Wrinkles cause friction and friction causes blisters!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Every Baller Needs A Fresh Pair Of Shoes

The shoes won’t make the player, but it definitely helps your image. Plus, part of being a baller is knowing about all the new basketball shoes. What pros wear them, the special colors, and cutting edge technologies.




The best place to buy basketball shoes? Nike factory outlet. The shoes are a little bit older, but you can find shoes there for up to 75% off. And sometimes they sell the crazy colors that you can’t buy in stores. Which is perfect for any baller because to be a baller you have to be unique. Personally, I’ve bought all gold shoes, all blue shoes, all red shoes. All purchased at Nike Factory at a discount.




And if you really want to customize your shoes go to Nikeid.com. The shoes will be more expensive, but you can customize your entire shoe. Choose from dozens of colors and you can get something written on your shoe, such as your favorite number. Eastbay magazine has good deals too. You can try on shoes in the store and then order them for a cheaper price or different color on Eastbay.com. Get some fresh shoes for this year’s summer basketball camps!

Best basketball shoes ever?:

How to Spin a Basketball on your Finger

Many people start out trying to immediately spin the ball on their finger. This is the wrong approach. Start with the basics. It is more important to master the spin before you try any nonsense with your fingers. Start out simply practice spinning the ball in the air. Throw it in the air over and over against to achieve the perfect spin.




A big decision to make is which direction to spin the ball. I would recommend spinning the ball away from you, so when you try to keep the spin going you’re hitting away from your face. Don’t want to hit your face while trying to spin the basketball! Again, the most important thing to remember is not to worry about catching it with your finger. Master the spin, so the ball’s rotation is fast and steady.




Once you master the spin then you can start catching it with your finger. Keep working on it for a few minutes every day and before you know it, you’ll be a spinning pro. The last step is to master all the tricks, going from right hand to left, bouncing it from your fist, bouncing it from your knee, going around your arms, going under your arm and spinning the ball on your nose!

This kid’s spinning tricks are sick:

Play In Rough and Tough Conditions

Playing in rough and tough conditions will only make playing in good conditions easier. The difficult conditions I’m talking about are dirty, slippery floors. Or a basketball that has no grip. Or in outside windy conditions that make jump shots difficult. Or a gym that doesn’t have air conditioning. Or playing against players who foul a lot and follow the rule “no blood, no foul”.

Here's a perfect example of why you want to practice in rough conditions. Got to get tough against a defense like this:




Playing on a dirty, slippery floor will only make playing on a clean sticky floor easier. Playing with an old slippery ball will only make playing with a new ball easier. Playing outside in rough conditions will only make playing inside easier. Playing against player who foul the crap out of you will only make playing with referees easier. Don’t complain if you have to play under these conditions, just accept it and play your hardest. Always remember this is good practice for your future. Tighten up!

Friday, May 31, 2013

Use an Agility Ladder

An agility ladder is a simple piece of exercise equipment that will help increase your quickness. It will improve your foot speed and give you that quick first step to blow by your opponents. Plus, it will make you a better dancer and let’s face it you could use some better dance moves.




Of course none of these benefits will come without dedicated practice. Try to commit to doing the exercises everyday during summer. Or do them everyday after school for a month. See if your coach will buy a couple ladders for the basketball team and commit to doing them before or after practice.




Frugal tip: If you don’t have money to buy an agility ladder, then tape on the ground with masking tape. I didn’t have the cash to make one when I was young, so I tapped one to my garage floor.Check out the videos posted for exercises. Get to stepping!

Be The First One In, Last One Out

Always strive to be the first one in the gym, first one into practice, first one at conditioning, and be the last one to leave. When you’re the first one in the gym, don’t just sit around waiting for your friends to show up or for the coach to start practice. Take this time to do some extra warming up, so you can hit practice full steam and begin with a good start. When you arrive early into practice you can also do shooting drills to work on your stroke.

An important benefit of coming to practice early that many young players don’t think about is that the coach will notice your drive and enthusiasm for the game and hopefully he or she will be more likely to put you in the game.




Don’t forget this also applies to being the last one to leave practice. When practice or conditioning is over, this is a great time to work on your free throws. It’s best to practice free throws when you’re tired just like a game time situation. And what better time to shoot free throws than at the end of practice.

Be the first one in and last one out and you’ll game will drastically improve because of it.

Run Extra After Practice

Running more than the rest of your teammates, and hopefully your competition, will achieve a couple things. One, you’ll be in better shape. You want to not only be in better shape than your competitors so that you can win the game, but you also want to be in better shape than your teammates so can make big plays down the stretch of a game. Two, If you’re in better shape the coach will also be more likely to call on you to shoot the game winner. You can’t be a leader when you’re out of breathe!




Don’t be afraid or embarrassed to run after practice. If you get made fun of, ignore the comments. Realize that you are improving better than everyone else. Running after practice is part of the first in the gym, last out of the gym mindset that will allow you to play better than your friends.


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

No sugar before playing a game!

No sugar before playing a game! Sugar is like an energy vampire. It will suck energy right out of you. Some kids will eat candy or drink soda before practice or the game and you will get some quick energy called a “sugar rush” but shortly after eating the sugar there will also be a “sugar crash” and is will soak up all you energy. Gatorade can be good during a came because you will be replenishing electrolytes, but drinking a Gatorade before the game can still give you that sugar rush and crash. Water is the way to go!

 

I’m going to go ahead and throw energy drinks in this post too. Energy drinks are not only loaded with sugar, but caffeine as well. Caffeine is a great energy boost for the short term. You may feel good at first, running around the court like a bat out of a cave, but the crash is inevitable and miserable. Plus, caffeine will also make you more dehydrated and is never a good idea to take before conditioning.

So, keep the energy drinks to a minimum, including a 5 hour energy shot. Stay away from that!




If you’re looking for some energy before the big game or before practice, I recommend a Vitamin C boost. There are a ton of products, such as Emergen-C, that make this vitamin C boost. If will give you a small jolt of energy with no crash. And it’s great for your immune system, so hopefully you’ll be sick less and can stay on your game. Of course a good night’s rest and a big breakfast is the best way to keep you going all day long.

And never, never bring candy to a basketball camp!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Cross Train to Improve Your Conditioning

In addition to basketball, condition training like swimming and bike riding can improve your game on the court. Training outside of basketball can be useful because you work out different muscles.

For example, bike riding can be a great way to strengthen and condition the muscles in your thighs which are crucial to hold a defensive position. Swimming can be a great way to improve endurance on the court. Never slow down on those fast breaks!



Also, don’t be afraid to try some yoga. Yoga will strengthen your core and increase flexibility, which will help you avoid injuries. Join a class at a local gym or buy a DVD to try in your bedroom. Heck look up some yoga YouTube videos for free. Many of basketball’s elite practice yoga on a daily basis, including Kevin Garnett. Try it out today!


Monday, May 13, 2013

Get Strong Fingers!

Go buy a stress ball and squeeze it throughout the day. Rather than just using your whole hand to squeeze the ball, try different exercises. Squeeze the ball with your thumb and point finger. Then to your middle finger and thumb, ring and thumb, and pinky and thumb. Also, put the ball between your thumb and pointer finger and squeeze. Continue this with your point and middle, middle and ring, ring and pinky.

Do these each ten times and as you get better add repetitions. Strong fingers will allow you to control the ball better when dribbling and avoid finger injuries. Plus, you’ll be able to beat all your friends in thumb wars!

Here's a product that will strengthen your hand by forcing you to dribble with your fingers:



This drill will also help you strengthen your fingers:

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Play Against Older Players

There is no quicker way to get better faster than to compete against older players. Older players who are stronger than you, faster than you, and better skilled. You will learn a great deal playing against them.

Play up, like this kid:


You may think you’re good against your friends or at the local YMCA, but at some point if you want to play in college, you’ll be playing against the best ballers in the country. You need to find talent to play against to start preparing for the bigger, faster, stronger opponents you’ll find in college. Like we discussed earlier, you want to be doing basketball activities that make you better, faster than your competition. There’s no better way to do that than play against older players.



Don’t be afraid to ask to play against kids, 2,3,4 years older than you. What’s the worst that could happen? They don’t ask you to play again. No biggie, no worries. Even try to match up against the grey haired old guys at the local rec. I guarantee they’ll play tough and might teach you something.

Find this old guy to play against:

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Improve Your Vertical Leap

Higher vertical jumping will allow you to snag more rebounds, rise above opponents on lay ups, and release a higher jump shot. Jumping exercises will also drastically increase your quickness. Notice some of the highest jumpers in the NBA are also the quickest.




Doing jumping exercises will also help out your cardio and is good at getting you conditioned for the short, quick bursts that happen so often in basketball. Beat your opponent to loose balls, steals, and rebounds. With stronger legs you'll also avoid sprained ankles and injuries. Work on jumping drill this summer so you're ready for school ball this winter. If you go to a basketball camp this summer, ask the counselors if they do any exercises to jump higher. For more information on the best vertical jump program, visit my review on Youth-Basketball-Camps.com.


Never forget to stretch before and after playing!

You jump higher, run faster, and get injured less when your muscles are loose and stretched out. Injuries are a baller’s worst enemy. You can't hone your skills, you cant work out, you can't do anything but sit around and watch every one else play. Avoid injuries at all costs! Get in the habit of doing stretches every day on your own. Some players only stretch when the team is doing it before practice. Try to get in the habit of doing it every morning before school or before you go to sleep.



A good time to stretch is in front of the TV. Just like dribbling in front of the TV, instead of sitting on the couch, spend the time wisely. Do some stretching exercises while watching your favorite TV shows is on.



A lot of players don’t realize this, but stretching can actually make you jump higher and run faster. Loosening those muscles isn’t just to avoid an injury. Top athletes go to stretching expects to loosen their muscles and teach them exercises they can do themselves. Stretching, just do it!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Ridin’ The Pine

If you spend more time in the bench than in the game, this is okay. Getting upset about it to the point where it lowers your motivation will only hurt your game play. If you want to get in the game, you have to give something to the team. Be a defensive specialist or work hard to get rebounds. If you work hard, your coach will notice it, and you’ll get game time.

Be like this bench player:


In the short term, if you’re playing with better players than yourself, then this will help you improve your skills faster than if you were playing with players who were less skilled than you were. Use your bench time to motivate the players in the game or learn from their strengths and weaknesses. Be active on the bench. Sitting there being upset you aren’t playing won’t get you in the game, that’s for sure.


Celebrate All Wins, Even Small Ones

Sometimes in basketball motivation is hard to come by. To prevent a burn out of the game, make sure you celebrate everything you can. Take pride in a hard practice or intense workout. Know that slowly you are getting better, and all this hard work will pay off in the game. Try to find something positive out of every game or practice. Goals help you celebrate the small wins because when you achieve a goal, well, then it’s a small win.

Lebron James celebrated this win and it wasn't even his:

Thursday, May 2, 2013

When you hit the basketball floor, bounce back up

If you get pushed or trip and fall on the floor, there’s no need to lazily lay around on the floor. There’s no need to see if you’re injured. When you hit the ground, pop back up and if you’re injured you’ll know because you’ll fall back down. If you’re not injured then you’ll that much faster get back into the game helping your team score or prevent the other team from scoring.

If you hit the floor and bounce back up. This is all part of playing tough. If you’re diving for loose balls and taking charges, you’ll be on the ground a lot, and getting up quickly will just get you back into the game ready to contribute.

Don't play weak like these guys:

Prefect Practice Makes Perfect

Every time you go out to that court or garage or where ever you play, you should be striving to practice perfectly. This is because if you practice the wrong shooting form, then you shot only gets worse. If you practice dribbling the ball with your head down, then you’ll dribble in the game with your head down. If you practice bad habits with your friends, then your bad habits will only hurt your live game play. Practicing doesn’t make perfect. Perfect practicing makes perfect.

Practice With Basketball Scenarios In Your Mind

"Ten seconds left, he crosses him opponent over, takes two dribbles left, pulls up for the shot, and…" When you practice play with game situations in your head. There are two reasons why you play with scenarios. First, because you’ll be better prepared to step up during game time.

Second, they’re just plain fun. These scenarios are what drive players to put in the long hours at the court, perfecting our skills, and practicing when others are playing video games. We wish to be like Michael Jordan hitting the game winner. Make up your own scenarios, and dream about that big game.

Remember you can never be a perfectionist:




Of course if you attend a basketball camp this summer you don't have to imagine any scenarios!

Speak Often With Your Coaches

Talking with your coaches after practice is important to improving your skills. Ask the coaches where you should improve your game? Is it better dribbling skills, passing skills, or defensive skills? The person who would know best is your coach. Plus, if the coach knows you want to get better and have been working on the things he told you to, he’s much more likely to play you in the game. He or she will know you’re a hard worker and will want you to succeed.

A good relationship with your coach will ultimately determine if you’re a good player or great player. You don’t have to be best friends, but you must respect each other. If you and your coach don’t get along it will really hurt your game.


Use Visualization to be a Better Player

One of the best ways to prepare for a game is visualizing what the game will go like. Close your eyes and imagine your perfect game and everything you’d like to do during that game. The more detailed the visualization is, the more likely it will happen in the real game. Your brain cannot tell the difference between you setting a perfect pick and simply imaging setting a perfect pick. Visualization will prepare you to play live in the game and do the things you want to do. If you want to remember every play you might run you’re your team, then go through the plays in your head before the game.

Great coaches like Phil Jackson, multiple NBA championship coach, encouraged his players to practice visualization before playing big big games.

More Basketball Motivation Tricks

Make bets with players before the game to achieve goals. You don’t always have to bet money. Bet food, or chores. An example of a bet is whoever gets the most charges or most rebounds gets free ice cream after the game. If you lose a bet and have to wash your friend’s parent’s car, you’ll definitely not want to lose the next bet!

You’re Gonna Play Like You Practice

Don’t expect to fool around with your friends and then be able to turn it on for the game. It’s okay to goof off with your friends every once in a while. Basketball should be fun and not something you see as a chore like mowing the lawn.

But, always remember if you want to be great in the game, you have to practice hard just as if you were in the game. It’s going to be hard to finish that tough shot in the fourth quarter if you haven’t been playing hard in practice and are not used to playing when you’re really tired, out of breathe, and losing strength. When you lace up those sneakers be ready to play, and play your best!

Practice as hard as these guys and you'll be successful:

Basketball Motivation Trick

When you are practicing, imagine Lebron James or your favorite basketball player is watching you play. Think for a second how hard you would practice, how much you would want to impress Lebron James if he was actually hanging out watching you play.  You would try to do ball handling and dribbling drills the fastest you’ve even done them. You’d concentrate on every shot. You’d play tough defense. This is the level of intense practicing you want to be at. If you need to, go buy a poster of your favorite basketball players and put it in your garage to act as a reminder to practice hard!

Here's a great motivational video:




Criticize for the Better!

If you have a bad player turning the ball over, telling them, “Hey quit turning the ball over” will never get them to actually do it. Aim your criticism at something more specific, like “hey, try a pass fake before you make a pass next time”. Or if they went through a play wrong, don’t say “dude, you did the wrong play”, say what needs to be done. Criticizing will only get the player down, try to always aim your criticism to make the player better. Offer a solution. Something that will make them better.


Tell them what to do and then explain why. For example, if you’re playing against a zone explain the benefits of trying to attack two defenders before passing the ball. Explain how it will get two defenders on one offensive player which will cause someone to be open. Communicate and teach! Just make sure you know what you’re talking about!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Be Positive!

When playing in the game comment all players on everything they do well. If someone takes a charge, say “good charge”, if someone gives you a good pass, say “good pass”. Sounds simple, but sometimes it’s hard to remember to do in the heat of the game.

This positive attitude builds momentum for your team. Try to see the positive side of all your losses. Learn from your loss. What did you do wrong? What could have been done better? Locate the weaknesses and improve them.

Here's the power of positive thinking:

Tip The Ball On Rebounds

If you are rebounding against someone who is taller than you or can jump higher, tip the ball away from your opponent to gain an advantage. The extra inch you get with just using your finger tips instead of trying to grab the ball with your hands could completely eliminate your opponents height advantage.  

This technique works especially well for guards rebounding against big men. If you can just get your finger tips on the ball and tip it away from you opponent, this will move the ball to an area more likely for you to grab it.

Use the pull down technique to avoid jump balls

If you find yourself fighting for the ball with your opponent, use this move to quickly rip the ball out of their hands and avoid a jump ball call by the ref. Instead of just pulling the ball toward you like a tug of war, get more power into your grab by lowering your shoulder into your grip and pulling the ball down towards you.

Putting your weight into your grab will give you more strength than your opponent and allow you to take the ball from him or her. It’s also called a rip through because you’re ripping the ball out and through your opponent’s hands. Practice this move, so when it come time in the game, it is second nature and quick enough to avoid the jump ball call.

You never want a jump ball against Vince Carter (only in the Pros do they jump after the call):


Get on the floor!

Be that player that will sacrifice himself to get the loose ball. If you’re timid and are unsure of throwing your body on the ground, then practice it. Get someone to roll a ball on your lawn and jump on it as if it were a piece of gold. You don’t want to be that player who won’t get tough and dive for the loose ball. Especially late in the game, have the courage and tenacity to dive on the loose ball and make a play to win the game!







Set Picks and Ask Teamates to Set Picks For You

A pick, also known as a screen, is when one of your teammates stands next to your opponent and acts as a “wall” that your defender has to get around. I won’t go into details of the pick and rolls, but this move will free you up on offense so it is easier to score. It will also make your opponents work harder on defense.


Use a signal to let your teammate know you’re setting a pick, such as, a fist in the air. Off the ball screens, where you set a screen for your teammate that doesn’t have the ball, are key to playing team basketball and it is what many coaches will use to develop for plays.


Learn how to set screens in a basketball camp!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Make and Maintain a Training Log

A training log is basically a list of drills you want to do and you “log” or write how often you do those drills. The log will get you in the habit of doing drills every week and before you know it, you will be doing the drills without even thinking about the log. But, still check them off to chart the progress.


If you’re new to basketball, it may be hard to remember all of the ball handling or conditioning drills you are learning. So a log will help you remember all the drills. Also, if you are not a disciplined player, a training log may give you the extra motivation to get drills done. Make a chart with the drills you want to get done for every day of the week, and leave empty boxes so you can check it off when you do them. You can make a chart by hand, but doing it on the computer will allow you to just print a new one every week. If you don’t know how to make a chart on the computer then ask someone older who does.

Mix it up a little and do different drills on different days. For example, ball handling drills Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and dribbling exercises Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday. If you are looking for more drills to do, check these out:



To learn more drills attend a summer basketball camps today!

Post Your Basketball Goals

Write it on an index card and put it on the wall. Or if you’re in high school, put it up in your locker room. The goal will remind you where you want to be and it will be that extra motivation to go out and practice on the days you don’t feel like practicing.

The goal could be specific like, to get the most rebounds on your middle school team or a goal down the road like getting a scholarship to play in college. Whatever the goal is, make sure it is visible and will remind you everyday where you want to be.



Basketball Goals - Think About Them!

Sit down and write down your goals. Make them specific as possible. What do you want to accomplish this season? What do you want to accomplish this summer? What do you want to accomplish by the end of middle school or high school? Do you want to play in college? How are you going to get there?

Also make a specific goal for every game. Make specific goals like take at least 3 charges this game. Get at least 5 offensive rebounds. Know your skills and try to push yourself. Set expectations and strive to meet those expectations.


Thank Those Who Do the Little Things

If you want to be a leader on the court and not simply a player then you must remember to thank those who do the little things. And I’m talking about the people who aren’t on your team. Thank the water boy/ girl, the ball boy/girl, the team managers, the score keepers, the refs, anyone who contributes to you playing basketball.

Being grateful to others will get you to stand out as not only a great basketball player on the court, but also a great person off the court. And especially don’t forget to thank your parents, brothers, sisters, aunt, uncle, grandparents if they spend the time to drive you to practice or buy you basketball clothes and equipment!


Watch a Basketball Movie

Hoop Dreams is one of the best documentaries every made. Space Jam is a fun movie to watch starring Michael Jordan and Looney Toons cartons. Every kid should watch it! Mix basketball documentaries into your reading. Watch the greats and learn from the greats. More Than a Game is a documentary about Lebron James. Hoosiers is a must see classic about basketball in Indiana. There’s so many basketball movies out there, watch them when you’re bored! And you might be able to check them out at your local library for free!


Don't Listen To Your Friends If...

Reading books may be one of those things that your friends might be making fun of you for. But you have to remember: you want to be great at basketball. You want to be better than your friends. That’s another reason why it’s so important to read basketball biographies. If you learn what the best players did to become great, you’ll have more confidence to ignore your friends and naysayers and do what you think will make yourself the best basketball player possible.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Reading Will Help Elevate Your Game

Quick comment on reading. To become a true baller, reading is key. You may think it’s boring or not part of the game, but it is. Skills aren’t everything. Being knowledgeable of the game is just an important as having skills because what’s the use of having skills if you don’t know how to use them properly?

People have been playing basketball for a long time. Everyone's made mistakes. Some large and others small. It's best for you as a basketball player to learn from others mistakes and not from your own. You own mistakes will slow down your growth as a basketball player. But, if you can read about others mistake you can avoid making them yourself. Or if you're in a situation in basketball, on or off the court, you can learn from others experiences and help you grow as a person and player.


Read a Basketball Novel

You won’t learn as much reading a novel as you will from an autobiography, but it’s still fun to read. You may see a side of the game you’re never thought about before. You may read descriptions you’ve never thought of and have a deeper love for the game. You don’t even have to buy these books. Check them out at your local or school library. Try to get a ride to school a little early, so you can hang out in the library and read your basketball books. Live, eat and breathe the game.

Read a Basketball Biography


There are several autobiographies out there written by great basketball players. These books will teach you the work ethics necessary to become successful. They’re motivational. Reading about someone else succeed and how they did it is a good lesson about how you can succeed.


I remember reading about how Pete Merevich used to bring a basketball with him everywhere he went and so I started bringing a basketball around everywhere I went. I remember reading about Dennis Rodman’s intense workouts, so I started working out longer and harder. Once you learn how the great basketball players because great and how hard they worked then you’ll be more likely to do what they did.


Also at many summer basketball camps I went to they played basketball videos during lunch time so we kept learning 24/7.