Basketball is a thinking game but, as a coach, one of your major responsibilities is to take as many situations as possible out of thought processes and turn them into quick reactions requiring no thought at all.
There’s something propelling about being up and outdoors, or in a field or on a court—some place away from home—at six in the morning. I used to think of it as “getting ahead” time. At six in the morning the streets in my little town were quiet. Often, it was still dark. But I was out there practicing and it felt good.
Hydration is undervalued, but every great athlete knows they have to stay hydrated. Here’s the best way to tell if you are properly hydrated.
Hey, why should you have to study geometry? You’ll never need that stuff. I’ve heard kids say that their fathers sold insurance and never once used geometry. Or their fathers built cars and they never once were asked about ancient history. Smugly, all sorts of kids say and think they will never again need some random stuff they are supposed to learn in school so they feel justified in passing it off and not bothering to learn it.
THINK THE GAME
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Few athletes are overjoyed at the thought of conditioning. It’s tough. It’s demanding. It causes pain. But everyone has to do it. Conditioning is crucial to success in every sport. The best technique and the most ability won’t help you win if you are too tired to use them. To be a champion, get in great physical condition.
Being organized is an essential ingredient of productivity. If you want to maximize your time and be as effective as possible, you have to be organized. It’s hard to imagine that you are really trying to maximize your abilities if you aren’t attentive to being personally organized. We’re all human. We all make mistakes. We can’t be perfect at everything. But we can have an attitude that seeks perfection as a habit.
Most every athlete has a vivid imagination. Most of us think often of what it will be like standing in the winner’s circle, or on the winner’s platform, or cutting down a net, being carried off a field, standing at a microphone, being interviewed on national TV. Having a vivid imagination not only helps get you through difficult practices and lonely sessions aimed at improving your skills, it also keeps you energized and on course.
As a young high-school athlete I’d never experienced falling in love, not until I started training with professional athletes in Houston. (Yes, just as the commercial says, the NBA CARES, they really do.) That was where I got to know Miss Takes. Oh, I didn’t love her immediately – I even cursed at her at the beginning of our relationship – I wanted her to go away, but somehow, I could never get rid of her. I began to appreciate her and eventually, I grew to love my Miss Takes.