How Do I Earn More Basketball Playing Time?

How Do I Earn More Basketball Playing Time?

Everyone Asks Us:  How Do I Earn More Basketball Playing Time?

Every young player involved in youth basketball plays the game because they want to be on the court come game time.  Unfortunately, only 5 players on each team can play on the court at a given time.  This leaves the players that are not a part of the starting 5 battling for more playing time when the bench is called upon to relieve the starters.  As a young basketball player that isn’t seeing as much playing time as they would like, here are some general guidelines you can follow to hopefully reach your desired playing level.

Embrace Basketball Skill Work to Earn More Playing Time

Every basketball team you will be a part of has scheduled practice and game times.  These present an opportunity to work with your teammates and compete against others to improve as a collective unit.  Each player on your team is required to show up for these practices and games, and give their best effort during this allotted team work periods.

However, if you are struggling to earn more playing time, just showing up to practices and games will not cut it.  As someone that is competing for more playing time, you need to practice your individual skills more than those that you are competing against.  Set aside time every day for you to find a gym and by yourself to work on those skills that you need to improve on most.  If you struggle with your ball handling, make a point to work on that every day.  If your shooting is the part of your game that needs the most work, make a pact to yourself that you will shoot 500 jump shots a day.  The only way to get better as a player is to put in the extra work.

Find Your Niche For More Playing Time

You see it all of the time at the professional level.  There are those players that come into the game off the bench and knock down a couple 3 pointers in a matter of minutes.  There are those that earn there playing time by coming into the game and being a lockdown defender.  And, there are those that are known for being high energy guys that come in, create havoc on defense, dive for loose balls, and provide the needed spark for their team.  These guys have earned playing time by finding their niche.

You may not be the best all-around player on the team, and that’s ok.  What you could focus on instead is becoming the best player on your team at one or two aspects of the game.  If you think your skill set could lend you to being the best shooter on your team, become the best shooter.  If you have the ability to stay in front of your man and shoot the passing lanes for steals, be the best defender.  By finding your role that suits you best, you can make more of an impact on the game when you get your chance.

Be a High Basketball IQ Player:

Basketball IQ refers to your decision making ability on the basketball court.  One of the most crucial deciding factors that decide your playing time on a team is your basketball IQ.  Coaches love playing the players that they can trust and that make good decisions on the court.  On the other hand, those that have a knack for not making smart basketball decisions tend to sit on the bench.  Despite all of Lebron James’ natural athletic ability, the part of his game that coaches marvel at most is his basketball IQ.  He most always makes the right pass, takes smart shots, and is trusted with having the ball in his hands at the end of the game.  One coach that praises Lebron’s mental aspect of the game, Larry Brown noted that “I’m a big fan of his—what he stands for, how he conducts himself, how he’s such a team player. He tries to play the right way. We don’t have enough of that in the NBA.”  High IQ basketball players are trusted by their coaches to make great decisions and therefore will earn more playing time.

Keys To Earning More Playing Time Summary

1.      Put in your behind the scenes work

2.      Become the best role player

3.      High IQ players are trusted in crunch time and crunch time is the optimal playing time to earn


Elite Basketball Trainer Wanted

Elite Basketball Trainer Wanted
Elite Basketball Training is expanding and is looking for well qualified basketball trainers to aid in their growth. We have fast become the area leader in personal and small group basketball skill development and basketball sports performance training. Our mission is to provide basketball players with the tools to elevate their games and become Elite both on and off the court and we have become known for delivering the most thorough basketball training experience in New Jersey.

Position: Basketball Trainer
Basketball trainers are knowledgeable and passionate about basketball skill and athletic development and are willing to share their knowledge with players of all ages and skill levels from beginner to professional. Basketball trainers design and implement personal and group training programs for players who want to improve their skills and monitor the progress of their players throughout these programs helping them elevate their games and become Elite. Consequently, the job of a basketball trainer is a rewarding one, as it affords you the opportunity to work with and advance the lives, skills, and athleticism of young basketball players in our area.
Salary and Wages
Trainers will be paid a minimum of $15 per hour and as much as $25 per hour depending upon their level of experience. Trainers will be paid on the 15th and 30th of the month.
Education Requirements:

  • High School Diploma. College Diploma is preferred.
  • Minimum age of 20 Years old
  • Coaching or training experience of 2 years.

Job Requirements

  • Passionate and energetic about basketball with the willingness to share that passion
  • An excellent communicator
  • Organized, responsible, and self motivated.
  • You must want to be there and provide the same energy to the last clients as you did with the first clients of the day.
  • Motivational. A large majority of players are training with us to be motivated. This does not mean they need to be yelled at but rather encouraged and corrected in a honest and frank manner.
  • Has the ability to manage time effectively. Time can easily get away from you. A good trainer will know when to move on from one skill or drill to the next.
  • Flexible working hours with the ability to work on weekends.

Mandatory Qualifications

  • 2 years of coaching and/or training experience. Having your former employer or coach as a reference will be helpful.
  • Outgoing both on and off the court. You must have the ability to communicate the skills being trained to the players through cueing and also recap those same skills to the parents at the end of the workout. In many cases, homework is prescribed in order to keep the development progressive. Be able to assign this homework.
  • Expertise in the fundamentals of the game of basketball with the ability to lead personal, group, and/or large clinic workouts.
  • Willingness to continue to learn and grow as a trainer through research and attending clinics.
  • An understanding of sports performance training, nutrition, and injury prevention and how they all relate to a player’s ability to perform on the court.
  • The ability to pass an FBI background check.
  • The ability to train weeknights and Saturday mornings at either the Red Bank and/or Edison, NJ locations.

Bonus Qualifications

  • Experience and a college or professional player
  • Personal trainer or performance coach certification
  • College degree
  • Existing clientele and/or connections that will aid in the expansion of Elite Basketball Training.
  • The ability to convey your thoughts effectively about basketball skill development, sports performance training and/or nutrition in writing.
  • A general knowledge of video editing with the ability to create videos for the Elite Basketball Training website or Youtube page.

Next Steps

  • Contact me (Rich Stoner) via email at with a resume, linkedin profile, writing samples, video samples, etc.
  • If you are qualified and deemed a good fit for our company, you will be contacted within a week of your email to either set up a sit down interview.

Top applicants will be given the opportunity to execute a demo training session of at least an hour, potentially longer. This is the time to show me who you are as a trainer and what you can deliver to my Elite Basketball Training client base.
After evaluating your demo workout I will determine the top applicants and at this time ask for a background check. I am searching for one to two more trainers at this time.

Thank you for your time and consideration. Please feel free to pass this post along via email or social media to other potential trainers who might be interested. If you currently do not fit all of the criteria as outlined above, this is not the end. Please don’t hesitate to contact me at this time and express that in your email. I will keep your information on file for future expansion as Elite Basketball Training continues to grow.



The One Hour Plan

I was having a conversation with a good friend of mine last week over the phone.  He was one of the first guys I ever trained and ultimately made it as a walk on at Villanova.  We remain friends to this day, sometimes skiing together but more often than not, Crossfitting together… but separately (that is to say him and I do the same workout at separate locations and compare).  The topic of our conversation was our current individual training and what type of programming we are using.  Towards the end he said something that struck me as so important I felt compelled to share it with my Elite Basketball Training family.  We were talking about how some athletes get in the gym and their workouts take up to three hours and making the point that this was too long, ultimately saying that,” If you designate one hour out of your day and go as hard as you possibly can for that hour you will have had a great workout.”  I agreed 100%…but determined that most athletes no matter what sport they play do not realize this nor do they want to do this because it’s actually kind of hard.

Now that school is back in session for all basketball players in New Jersey and across the country there is limited time to train and prepare for basketball season.  With school ending around 3 pm and homework and team practices taking up a bulk of the afternoon and evening time slots, basketball skill development has tapered off and strength and conditioning for basketball has become an after thought.  With this in mind, I am instituting “The One Hour Plan” and there is no better time than the present to adhere to this philosophy.  I have made this point on countless occasions recently at my group and personal training sessions, that all you have to do is designate one hour a day to your basketball training regimen and then make that hour the most efficient and effective hour of basketball practice you can and you will find success.  Designating one hour will force you to have a plan and be prepared as mentioned in my previous post, “Tips to Focus Your Training This Fall.”  Furthermore, it will require you to work extremely hard in order to execute your practice plan for that day.  DO NOT misinterpret what I am saying here.  I am not saying that all you need to do is train for basketball one hour a day.  I am say that you need to train as hard as you can for basketball one hour a day.  There is a difference.  The first statement will get you no where fast.  The second, on the other hand will show marked improvement in your overall basketball game.

So now is the time to institute the One Hour Plan into you basketball training regimen.  School has started and your after school schedule has left you with limited time to train for basketball.  With that in mind, designated one hour a day to your basketball training and work as hard as you can for that hour.  This will push you to your limits and ensure that you are training to make gains this fall and prepare for your upcoming high school basketball season.

Need guidance with your training this fall?   Contact Elite Basketball training and find out about our personal and group basketball skill development as well as the most innovative basketball specific sports performance training out there.  These programs are guaranteed to make sure your skills are sharp and that you are in the best shape this basketball season.

Tips to Focus Your Training This Fall

For many basketball players in New Jersey Labor Day weekend is a farewell to summer and the last sign that school begins soon.  With that in mind, that leaves 13 weeks until the start of the 2014-2015 high school basketball season, and for other players and programs, this time may be even less.  The two and a half months that basketball players should have been using to develop their basketball skills and athleticism has all but disappeared in a blink of an eye and you may now be realizing that you might not have done as much basketball training as you should have this summer.  Now that school is starting and the season is not too far away, basketball is relevant again and you are realizing that you need to prepare starting immediately, and how you prepare will be crucial to your success this season.  Since time is short, you will need to be focused and have a purpose each and every time you step outside or into a gym to workout.  These following tips will help ensure you are focused in your training and prepare you for a very successful basketball season.

I know that many basketball players may not want to hear this, but your primary focus as a student athlete is your academics.  As mentioned earlier, school begins for pretty much everyone within the next week and your success in the classroom will lead to success on the basketball court.  Make sure that you are prepared for your first day of school and beyond.  Technology today has allowed teachers to post online what they expect of you and what supplies you need for their class. Don’t wait until after school starts to go out and buy these materials…do it now and spend an hour organizing yourself for the first day of school and beyond.  Being prepared ahead of time will limit any stress that comes with the first day/week of school and allow you to focus on your academics.  Once your academics are in order then you can move on to post school activities that include basketball skill development and strength and conditioning.

At the end of the school day, your afternoons should consist of doing your homework (notice I listed this first), developing and honing your basketball skills, and getting yourself in the best shape possible for the basketball season.  The summer was really the time to turn weaknesses into strengths but there is still time to improve and prepare at the same time this fall, just DO NOT wasted anymore time.  Furthermore, have a plan each and every time you set foot on the court to practice.  A solid skill development session should include ball handling, finishing, passing (if you have a second player with you), and shooting and it should all be executed at game speed and in game situations.  If you are skimping on developing any of these skills then change that immediately.  It is best to write out a practice plan either on paper or on your phone that includes what you will work on, what drills you will use, and for how long you will work on them for.  Ever since my coaching days I have been a huge fan of using the clock the designate blocks of time for specific drills and skills.  In today’s day of smart phones and apps, a clock is easy to come by and you should do the same.  Designate specific periods of time for each skill and work on that skill during that time period.  Turn your practice into four quarters like a game and assign a skill per quarter (sometime combining skills) and work like crazy on that skill for that specific time period.  Beyond practicing on your own, find a basketball trainer (like Elite Basketball Training ) to train with once, twice, or three times a week to help you train and give you ideas of what specifically you need to be working on.  Beyond training with an actual trainer a great resource to use when on your own is  This is an online product that you can use right from your phone that has ability based preset workouts already loaded to its database for you to use.  You can also create your own workouts or have your trainer create one for you (if he has a coach’s account which we at Elite Basketball Training do) to work on skills more specific to you.  Having a basketball trainer, subscribing to and using, and/or writing out and timing your own workouts will ensure that you are prepared and focused when practicing.  This will guarantee that you are efficient in your workouts and allow you to get much more accomplished in a shorter period of time.  This is important because you also need to include strength and conditioning into your fall preparation ensuring that you are in the best possible shape for the upcoming season.

Strength and conditioning is often the most overlooked and forgotten component of your development as a basketball player, however, it is crucial to your success on the court as the best players are always in the best shape.  Therefore it needs to be a part of your basketball training this fall at least four days a week or more.  Once again, you need to have a plan when you workout.  This should include training for strength, power, agility, flexibility and conditioning.  Please do not confuse running cross country with strength and conditioning for basketball.  That could not be further from the truth and is a bad idea.  Basketball is a game of short quick bursts, multiple movement patterns, and many changes of direction.  Cross country running or running for distance in general is the exact opposite of what I just described so please eliminate that from your training because it does not transfer to the game.  Once again, I recommend finding a qualified sports performance coach, preferably one that specializes in basketball specific performance training (like Elite Basketball Training) and work out with them as often as possible.  This will ensure that you are working on the correct exercises to improve performance on the basketball court and prevent common injuries that characteristically occur during the season.  Being in great shape also requires a concentrated nutrition program which is another often forgotten component of athletic success.  As an athlete, your body needs fuel and eating right will provide you with energy to perform both in school and in the gym.  Eat balanced meals that consist of protein, whole grain carbohydrates, and vegetables and eat them often.  Then supplement your nutrition with great products from Advocare (which can be ordered directly from by clicking on the Performance Nutrition tab).  These products are banned substance free (making them perfect for athletes), developed by doctors,  and are currently used by no less than 11 NFL quarterbacks including Drew Brees.  I recommend the Performance Elite line, the DB9 Advobar (great when you cannot get a full meal in or between games), and Rehydrate to replace that Gatorade you have been drinking for years.

Strength and conditioning including proper nutrition, skill development, and a renewed focus on your academics are all crucial to your preparation this fall for your upcoming basketball season.  However, the biggest key to your success is preparation.  Executing each component (academics, skill development, and strength, conditioning, and nutrition) will become significantly easier if you are prepared and have a plan for each and every day.  Take the time to write your workouts out and also use your phone calendar to track what you are working on and when for each day of the week.  When it comes to nutrition, prepare your food for each day ahead of time and take it with you.  Preparing ahead of time will turn you into an efficient machine and efficiency is crucial at this point because time is short and basketball season is less than 13 weeks away.



Sacrifice Short Term Misses…Key to Basketball Shooting Success

Basketball Shooting Success

The Critical Element For Basketball Shooting Success

As many of you know, we work extensively at Elite Basketball Training with basketball players looking to fix or change their jump shot.  Consequently, I have seen a wide array of jump shooting inconsistencies, from the follow through to the body positioning,  that would blow your mind and one thing is for sure, you must be consistent from bottom to top to become a good jump shooter.  If you look at the great jump shooters in the world (Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Klay Thompson) they all shoot the basketball in a similar way.  Furthermore, they also each shoot the basketball the same way every time and that is the key to their success.  They do not follow through differently on different shots.  They do not plant their feet differently each time they shoot.   They are consistent and as a result, their jump shot consistently goes in the basket.  Consistently shooting the basketball correctly, is the key to jump shooting success.  So how does a basketball player looking to fix or change their jump shot achieve that sort of consistency?  They must sacrifice short term misses for long term makes.

The Reality Behind Your Basketball Shooting

Basketball players around the world have a burning desire to make every jump shot, and they should.  This is what drives them to be successful.  However, there is one big issue. The majority of basketball players around the world are below average jump shooters that do not make a majority of their shots, but they have a belief that they do.  Maybe their definition of making a majority of shots differs from actual reality (if you are not making 7 of 10 with no defense then that’s not a majority) but you ultimately, you have to ask yourself, if what you are doing on your jumper is working. Rate your jump shot on a scale of one to 10, 10 being great and be realistic.  If you are realistic and you believe that you fall in the “needs to improve” category then start to make some changes to your jump shot because that is the only way that you have a chance of improving.

Prioritizing Process Over Performance In Basketball Shooting

When making changes you must completely understand that you will miss shots (probably a lot of them) and that this is okay because it is for the greater good.  Right now you are accustomed to shooting a certain way and despite the fact that its incorrect, when you are in the groove you can make some shots.  However, you don’t want to make some shots you want to make a lot of shots and that requires change.  Change will take you breaking old habits.  Breaking these old habits will cause misses and that is to be expected and okay.  This is a hard concept for young players to understand but it is a necessary concept that will lead to improvement in the long run.  This exact scenario happened just yesterday at a basketball training workout when I was working with a playing on correcting his jump shot.  I was having him work on a specific component of the jumper and when it did not work right away he reverted back to his old habits.  Doing so only resulted in misses and got him frustrated until I had this exact conversation with him and explained that he need not worry about missing shots.  Basketball season is over three months away and missed shots now do not matter.  After this conversation he stuck to the course and finished the basketball workout on a high.

When trying to correct or fix your jump shot, remember to keep the big picture in mind.  Ask yourself if what you are doing right now is working.  Chances are, it is not and that is a result of inconsistencies.  Before you can become a good jump shooter, you must correct those inconsistencies and the correction process will lead to misses at first.  However, with the big picture in mind, you must sacrifice those short term misses in order to achieve long term makes.

If you are interested in fixing your jump shot, there is still time before the season begins.  Contact me today to learn about the Pro Shot System and how it can elevate your game and make you elite.

The Big Tip For Basketball Shooting Success:  Sacrifice Short Term Misses!


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