Let’s be honest, who doesn’t want a little extra love? If you want to be loved by your basketball coach (and this can apply to your teachers, a boss, or even your parents), follow these three simple rules:
#1 – Show up early, not on time.
- My head coach at Iowa State used to say, “Anybody can be on time, but it takes someone special to be early.” It’s a great way to separate yourself from being an average athlete. More importantly, you can get up extra shots, you can ensure a proper warm-up, and you will be more prepared than anyone in the gym.
- PGC Founder Dick DeVenzio expected his athletes to arrive early to workouts and practices. He knew it was a little thing that would make a big difference in the long run.
#2 – Communicate not with words, but with actions, that you are engaged and present at all times.
- We spend a great deal of time at our Essentials program teaching athletes how to perfect this through consistent and championship-like body language. You see, there is a major flaw in the education system. We teach people how to read, write, and now, type. Unfortunately, we are missing a key piece in relation to communication: body language and gestures. You might communicate with words that you want to be at practice, and you have a desire to improve. However, most athletes are unaware of their body language. Wavering stances, constant twirling of the basketball, and unfocused eye contact communicate the opposite.
- I found some very powerful thoughts about communication and body language in the book, “How Make People Like You: In 90 Seconds or Less” written by Nicholas Boothman. “If your gestures, tone, and words do not say same thing, people will believe the gestures… Your gestures are a giveaway to what you really mean.” You’re saying two different things, and as human beings, we believe body language more than we do words.
- Stand tall, keep the ball at your hip, and be an active listener with great eye contact, adding in a few head nods if you want your coach to really believe you are present and engaged. I’ll spend a future blog expressing this thought with more detail and images.
#3 – A simple ‘Thank You’ goes a long way.
- Coaching can often be a thankless job, especially if you are not earning Callipari-type contracts, which most of your AAU and high schools coaches are not. Very often the people coaching you are volunteers and receive no money for their services. Without feeling like a brown nose, thank him or her after every practice, tournament, or competition. It doesn’t need to be a long-winded speech, email, or text message, but two simple words that will make him or her want to coach you more. It seems basic ‘Politeness 101’, but few young athletes do this on a daily basis.
It’s easy to go to the gym and just fool around, but if you want to get better, you have to put in the time. Join PGC President Mano Watsa as he explains why taking game shots at game speed improves both your basketball skills and your work ethic.
Here are six leadership lessons I’ve learned in the weight room from training experiences with my own athletes, as well as two years with the University of Maryland men’s and women’s basketball teams.
So I urge you, stay ready so you don’t have to get ready. Stay checked in so when your time and chance comes, you’re ready to seize it.
PGC Basketball provides intense, no-nonsense basketball training for players and coaches. Our basketball camps are designed to teach players of all positions to play smart basketball, be coaches on the court, and be leaders in practices, games and in everyday life.
We combine our unique PGC culture with a variety of teaching methods and learning environments to maximize the learning potential of those that attend our sessions. In addition to spending 6-7 hours on the court each day, lessons will be reinforced through classroom sessions and video analysis.
Our goal at PGC is to empower you with the tools to fulfill your basketball dreams, while also assisting you in experiencing the joy of the journey.