Here are some tips that look pretty simple and basic but they can change the way your players play basketball forever.
1.) Learn from the best
Study the games in the NBA and other leagues as well. Go to youtube.com and search for, let’s say, “bruce bowen defence”, “tony parker lay up”, “vince carter top 10 dunks” or whatever area you think your men need to work on. Have them watch this stuff. Be creative.
Watch the “top 10 clips from NBA action”, and I guarantee, you’ll come across a great move you can try to teach. These guys know their stuff (for the most part) so why not learn from the best.
2.) Visualize it first
This has been said number of times, but that’s because it’s so important. A great example that comes to mind is with MJ. Michael Jordan said that he imagined himself shooting clutch shots about thousands of times before he actually started making them.
You probably know that right? Well, as a coach you wanna try this philosophy with your players. It’s not a “new age” kinda thing. It may be hard to get used to it. At first to consciously think about it while shooting for example but with the time you’ll master it because it’s really something that can be learned.
First, it all happens in the head. Have them visualize how they are going to handle the ball when going up against tougher defender who will be guarding them.
Or for example, what would they do if the defender responds in a certain way. How would they react? What are the alternatives?
Tell them this…
Before you start moving without the ball (on the court), try to anticipate who would follow you, where is the screen and so on. Never stay in one spot by the way, when you’re moving without the ball.
Also make sure to change speed. Start slow, then sprint fast and go slow again. Be aware where your teammates are and where they are going.
3.) Always keep it simple – Focus on the big picture
Convince them to truly believe in fundamental basketball. No one really needs a special fancy move up his sleeve for every situation. Remember, great fundamentals mean great basketball players.
Coaches who over-coach tend to coach a losing team. They confuse the team with way too much information. Sometimes they forget that players need some time to process the information and to try it, fail it, then do it again, and again until they master it. In other words, practice a lot.
The player that you want to improve, put him to play against someone who is better than him. They have to struggle. It’s the same with the game of chess. When you’re struggling the most, that’s when you’re actually getting better.
Simplicity is power. Focusing on one specific area is better than trying to improve ball handling, jump shots, rebounds and everything at the same time.
Instead of just working on all aspects of shooting try to improve on one specific. For example, have them practice shooting over a taller guy. For this, you can have someone holding a broom in the air in order to make the shots more difficult.
After they master that, have them practice shooting like that from different positions.
Always be aware of what specific area are you are working on.