Putting in the extra work

Got big dreams kid? 

So do 50% of the players in the teams you play with. So what makes you different? A brutally honest answer to that is absolutely nothing — until you realise what needs to be done to get where you want to go.

It’s all about attitude and discipline. It’s about creating a routine and sticking to it -working when others are sleeping.

Here’s five key points to ensure that you get to where you want to go –

1. Your Diet

Your diet fuels your dreams. Literally. If you eat the wrong things, it sets off a domino effect, your body isn’t fuelled properly, you can’t perform at training, it makes you upset, you can’t sleep properly. All of these things can be prevented by choosing to eat right. Read more about what to eat here.

2. Your Sleep

This might not seem like a big thing right now this early in your basketball career but it can make all of the difference. Yes, your friends might be playing video games until 1AM on the weekend, but if your routine involves a workout at 6AM, then your body and your mind need to shut down early so that you’re not only prepared but focused.

It all depends on what you want out of your career, do you want to put basketball first and be better than everyone else, or do you want to do what everyone else is doing and be average?

3. Your Routine

Make a training schedule, put it up on the fridge and stick to it. Make sure you have someone to hold you accountable — this could be a sibling, a friend or a parent.

Treat each training session as a step towards your goal. Come early, ready to work hard and ready to learn. And you don’t need a coach to train, you can head down to an outside hoop and run yourself through reps, whether its shots, dribbling or defence.

The key to longevity on the court is warming up and down before every training session and every game. Read up on our blog about how to warm up and warm down with the right exercises and stretches.

Change your mind frame and you’ll change your outlook.

4. Confidence

What’s the point in having big dreams if you are not confident enough to believe that they will happen when you put the work in?

Confidence is essential because if you work hard with no confidence then it will never translate to the game.

A warning, there is a fine line between confidence and being arrogant. Toe it carefully because the moment you become overconfident, you become un-coachable.

5. Discipline

The one thing that defines a college player with potential to the NBA and the other 99%.

Discipline means you are willing to sacrifice things that others are not for your goals. It might mean skipping a party, or going straight from school to training. It might also mean, eating the right things before and after your games and choosing to do right by your body.

But mostly it means that you let nothing stand in the way of reaching your basketball goal.

And if you’re not a lone wolf – Next time you see your friend, sit them down and have a five minute chat to them about where you want to go in basketball and see if their goals align with yours.

Next step, create a training schedule together, hold each other accountable and make sure you stick to it.

Do you think you have what it takes?