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Putting in the Work

January 15, 2019 AT 12:00 AM

Why we work out in basketball

Most coaches will tell their players that basketball is more than just getting onto the court and shooting the ball around. Although training on our ball skills such as shooting, dribbling and passing can often be the most appealing parts of the game, it pays to work out in the gym too.

Conditioning: There is hardly anything that matters more in the game than conditioning. Without the stamina to last throughout the course of a match, what is the point of developing your basketball skills? Just imagine if you have a transition opportunity at the end of the fourth quarter to win the game, but simply don’t have the conditioning to finish the play. Similarly, shuffling intensely for 40 minutes on defense is hard work and requires top-notch physical abilities.

First step: Rather than just getting up and down the court, basketball is a game of starts, stops and turns. By working on your explosiveness, you will be able to get by your defender with just your first step, forcing a second help defender and throwing your opponents’ positioning out of sync. 

Strength: Although basketball is scarcely a game of brute force, strength helps in many underrated areas. You may be able to hit a fadeaway jumper with impressive regularity, for instance, but this skill cannot be put to good use if you do not have the strength to establish and hold your position in the post. Boxing out is another important skill that requires some muscle as well.

Jumping: High-flyers dominate the highlight reels, but your leaping ability is not just a matter of style. Jumping definitely helps with finishing ability at the rim, and it is often used to maximize the release point on jumpshots. On defense, jumping ability can help you to challenge shots and passes as well.

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