In honor of all of our Veterans I decided to post the U.S. Navy Seal Creed. It was sent to me this week via email and I thought it a good idea to share with you all. Not that it has much to do with basketball, which pales in comparison to what our servicemen do for our country, but because there are valuable life lessons evident throughout.
“In times of war or uncertainty there is a special breed of warrior ready to answer our Nation’s call. A common man with uncommon desire to succeed. Forged by adversity, he stands alongside America’s finest special operations forces to serve his country, the American people, and protect their way of life. I am that man.
My Trident is a symbol of honor and heritage. Bestowed upon me by the heroes that have gone before, it embodies the trust of those I have sworn to protect. By wearing the Trident I accept the responsibility of my chosen profession and way of life. It is a privilege that I must earn every day.
My loyalty to Country and Team is beyond reproach. I humbly serve as a guardian to my fellow Americans always ready to defend those who are unable to defend themselves. I do not advertise the nature of my work, nor seek recognition for my actions. I voluntarily accept the inherent hazards of my profession, placing the welfare and security of others before my own.
I serve with honor on and off the battlefield. The ability to control my emotions and my actions, regardless of circumstance, sets me apart from other men. Uncompromising integrity is my standard. My character and honor are steadfast. My word is my bond.
We expect to lead and be led. In the absence of orders I will take charge, lead my teammates and accomplish the mission. I lead by example in all situations.
I will never quit. I persevere and thrive on adversity. My Nation expects me to be physically harder and mentally stronger than my enemies. If knocked down, I will get back up, every time. I will draw on every remaining ounce of strength to protect my teammates and to accomplish our mission. I am never out of the fight.
We demand discipline. We expect innovation. The lives of my teammates and the success of our mission depend on me – my technical skill, tactical proficiency, and attention to detail. My training is never complete.
We train for war and fight to win. I stand ready to bring the full spectrum of combat power to bear in order to achieve my mission and the goals established by my country. The execution of my duties will be swift and violent when required yet guided by the very principles that I serve to defend.
Brave men have fought and died building the proud tradition and feared reputation that I am bound to uphold. In the worst of conditions, the legacy of my teammates steadies my resolve and silently guides my every deed. I will not fail.”
At our “Starting Five” basketball clinic this past Sunday we were fortunate enough to have former collegiate national champion at Villanova University and professional basketball player Chuck Everson there to speak about post play. It is not often that post play comes up at a clinic and to be able to have someone of that magnitude there to speak about it and break it down for almost three hours was fantastic. Over the course of the three hour basketball clinic, Everson spoke about every aspect of post play imaginable. From what to do before you had the ball, how to receive the ball, what to do with the ball once you received it, even how to play the post within the concept of an offense. It was truly an incredible presentation that was devoted to anyone, and I do mean anyone that was willing to post up. As a matter of fact, in the beginning of the clinic Chuck Everson spoke to the entire group and mentioned that players do not have to be extremely tall to be effective in the post. He says that anyone can score in the post as long as they want the ball. Wanting the ball, is one of his four keys to post play that he he mentions in the following video. Have a look to find out the other three.
Combine Skills and Conditioning Using Agility Ladder Training
As I have mentioned before, the game of basketball requires so many skills that need to be developed. Successful basketball players must be able to pass, dribble, shoot, and finish. They also must be able to cut effectively, read the defense and react to it, and defend different players in different scenarios. Beyond these examples, basketball players must also posses strength, power, speed, agility, and endurance and all of these attributes including the latter examples are skills that can and must be incorporated into a player’s basketball training regimen. Upon first look, this really seems like a lot and it would take a inordinate amount of time to train if you tried to work on all these skills separately. However, if you get creative and combine multiple skills into the same drills you can cut down on training time and make the workout efficient and more basketball specific.
One way to develop an efficient workout is to incorporate the agility ladder training into your workouts for basketball skill development. Agility is the ability to change direction efficiently and effectively. It requires balance, speed, core and leg strength, footwork, and coordination. In order to improve agility, a basketball player, or any athlete can work on each of those components (balance, speed, strength, footwork, and coordination) separately and/or also practice them together while training. One tool that can help you accomplish this is the agility ladder. Basketball requires many different movements from multiple angles thereby putting your body in unfamiliar positions. Agility ladder drills are designed to work a wide range of foot and movement patterns. When consistently practiced, these patterns become second nature to the player and consequently, they are able to respond to the various angles and movements that basketball requires.
Basketball Finishing Skills & Agility Ladders
On their own, agility ladder drills are functional and sports specific in nature. However, by adding a basketball to the drill they become even more specific to the actual game of basketball. You can use agility ladders as their own entity within the drill like in the case of the video below. In this video, you will see how we have turned the agility ladder drills into two separate finishing drills. In the first drill, the ladder is set up on an angle to the basket ending near the three point line. The player is required to run through the ladder with the basketball and when they get to the end, push the ball out and finish at the rim. Any foot pattern that involves the player running through the ladder facing forward can be used in this drill. This can include but is not limited to: two steps in each box, three step or icky shuffle, two in two out, etc. The player can also incorporate many different types of finishes such as a regular layup, a reverse layup, jump stop and finish, or finish the front of the rim. Players and trainers can also add a chair to act as a help defender and force the player into s change of direction dribbleafter the push out dribble. Finally, players can even push the ball out and pull up for a jumper or a step back or drag dribble. Honestly, the combinations are endless.
Lateral Movement and Agility Ladders
In the second drill, the ladder is set up horizontally at half court. The player must now run through the ladder in any side to side or lateral foot pattern and upon finishing the ladder sprint to the rim for a pass and finish. These foot patterns can include but are not limited to two step lateral, carioca, lateral four step, etc. Just like in the previous drill, his drill can be done with the basketball in hand as well. The player can hold the ball or pass back and forth to a partner at the three point line facing him. By incorporating the ball and passing, you are increasing the efficiency of the drill by adding even more skills that are being worked on. Once again the possibilities for this drill are limitless and you can incorporate different finishes, change of direction dribbles, and jump shots off the catch and off the dribble into the drill. It should be noted that whatever foot pattern you complete in one direction, you should also complete in the other direction. This will ensure that you are developing these lateral movements in both directions, which is important not only for performance reasons but also for injury prevention. When training laterally, no matter what the drill you want to be sure to develop the exterior of both legs and that requires you to train going in each direction.
Basketball by nature is a sport that requires a player to possess a multitude of skills. The more skilled a player can be, the better the chance that they have of being successful on the basketball court. These skills include passing, dribbling, shooting, cutting, footwork, defending, speed, agility, quickness, strength, power… the list goes on. Upon first look, training for all of these skills may appear to be a daunting task. However, if you train by using multiple skill drills, your workouts will be far more efficient and less time consuming. One way to increase the efficiency of your workout and train for speed and agility at the same time as passing, dribbling, finishing, cutting, and shooting is by adding the agility ladder to your basketball training drills. Doing so provides countless opportunities to work on a variety of skills including the added footwork, agility, and speed training that the ladder provides. This will ultimately create a drill that is more basketball specific and efficient, thereby making you a more complete player and saving you a whole lot of time.
Be creative, and think about how you could incorporate the agility ladder into your favorite drills. If you would like greater results from your basketball speed and agility work, please check out our course by clicking on the image below:
I know that this site is devoted to basketball training and that it might be surprising to see the Swine Flu in a title, but this really is important and a must read. With basketball season just around the corner the risk of the flu is a serious one. Basketball teams spend a lot of time together in close quarters and disease can spread very easily. I have seen it happen every year, one member of the team gets sick, then another, then another and so on. Now, I’m not an alarmist kinda person. Not at all. But the statistics don’t lie:
– Seasonal flu annually sickens 5-20% of the population
But there’s no need for gloom and doom. Just read these 7 simple techniques reduce your Swine Flu rish and you’ll start feeling much better.
Basketball is a sport that puts many requirements and demands on the athletes that play it. A successful basketball player is one who is fundamentally sound and possesses the ability to dribble, pass, and shoot. These are three skills that can and should be worked on, daily. However, they are not the only parts of the game that equate to success. Successful basketball players are also strong, quick, powerful, have good balance, and have good endurance. But, can these characteristics be trained or worked on? Absolutely, and they should be.
Strength and Conditioning For Basketball Excellence
Consider this, players spend hours working on their jump shot, shooting jumper after jumper out in their driveway or in a gym just to make sure they can hit shots in a game. However, if they do not possess the power to explode up and get their jumper off over a taller defender, or the endurance to have their jumper continue to fall when they are tired in the fourth quarter all those hours of shooting may amount to nothing. Or maybe the player is a great ball handler and passer, but they lack the ability to change speed and direction because of poor balance and a lack of quickness.
Think of Strength and Conditioning As A Basketball Skill
Ultimately, what they can do with the basketball means nothing. Finally, perhaps someone is a good fundamentally sound defender but cannot jump to the ball quick enough, or close out correctly because of poor balance, or stay with their bigger more physical opponent because of a lack of strength. What is the solution to all of these problems? It is really quite simple, work on all of your basketball skills including strength, speed, and conditioning.
If you were not able to pass, dribble, or shoot well, you would work on that skill until you were better at it. Strength, speed, agility, jumping ability, and even endurance are no different. These are all skills that should and need to be worked on. Nowadays, it is no longer frowned upon to lift weights for basketball. Gone are the days of the weight training will hurt my jump shot adage. And realistically, what basketball player would not want to be faster or jump higher? A good strength and conditioning program could be the difference between making the team or not making the team, starting varsity or sitting on jv, or even becoming a major college player or not playing college basketball at all. So do not wait any longer, the time has come for you to start incorporating strength and conditioning into your basketball workouts.
Not sure where to begin, try these two beginning phase basketball workouts:
Are you looking for more serious results from your basketball speed and agility training? You may want to check out our course that BasketballTrainer.com founder Chris Corbett called “one of the best resources available in basketball conditioning.”