A 1992 study of 8,000 youth athletes found that “having fun” was their primary reason for participating in a sport and yet more and more frequently, we see this primary reason slowly begin to fade. In many cases, the fun factor of a sport will take a backseat to factors such as getting a college scholarship, winning, pleasing parents or coaches; the list can go on and on. In the worst cases, the fun factor of a sport is replaced by stress inducing factors that eliminate the fun altogether.
We talkin’ about practice. Not just practice, we talkin’ about pre-practice. The champions approach to practice is to play with MORE focus, preparation and love than they do in games. Why? It’s more difficult to bring your passion to practice on a daily basis but the key to championship performance is to learn to master the boring and love the mundane details as much as you love to play on the stage in front of the bright lights.
Attitude means a lot of things these days. Sometimes, by itself, it means a bad attitude. Sometimes it means a way of carrying yourself with self-respect and flair. It means different things to different people. So here, let’s talk about what it means to have the right attitude, the right way, or the best way, to carry yourself and to approach your sport and your life.
It’s that time of year when many basketball athletes start saying something along the lines of, “I’m going to do better next year.” With the best intentions they enter the off-season thinking how they learned some gold nuggets from mistakes, trials, and tribulations of the past season and how they “won’t let them happen again.”
THINK THE GAME
Join us this summer and discover how to become a playmaker, lead your team, and run the show.
Game shots. Game speed. Game spots. High intensity. Quality over Quantity. Have a plan. You’ve heard it before, especially if you’ve attended one of our courses. You know what to do and how to maximize your improvement. But what shouldn’t you bring to the gym when you’re training?
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. Most everyone realizes this so I don’t plan to spend any more time on the obvious. To be a champion, get in great physical condition.
To become a champion, it is necessary to practice, to the fullest extent possible, with the idea that you are playing against champions in big games that really matter. Often you may find yourself in practice playing against a second-teamer or a smaller, weaker player. So you let down, or you play carelessly, or you do things that work there but won’t work against a star.
Don’t waste time nearly every weekend this summer trying to get seen when you are not yet good enough. Get good first, then get seen. Play pick up with players that are better than you, do things you don’t get to normally do on your team. Stretch yourself to do things others won’t.