Do I need a basketball trainer?
This seems like a pretty simple question. As a basketball trainer by trade, I am tempted to tell you yes and list the reasons why. However, let’s address this on a case-by-case basis.
“I’m a 10 year old and love to play basketball with my friends at the park. I play organized football and soccer, but don’t play organized basketball.”
Young players who aren’t playing organized basketball don’t need a basketball trainer. If you’re just having fun with your friends, no coaching needed!
“I’m a 10 year old and love to play basketball with my friends. I’ve never played organized basketball before, but I think I want to tryout for my school team in the 7th grade.”
Yes! A young player who is looking to play organized basketball can definitely use a basketball trainer. A trainer can help you build fundamental skills that you may not have another way to build before you tryout for your school team. You want to be prepared for when those skills and that basic basketball IQ is needed.
“I’m an 8 year old and I just picked up a basketball for the first time with my dad yesterday. I had a lot of fun!”
If you’re just being introduced to the game at this age, you may want to have some fun getting familiar with it first. It may turn out that basketball is something you just do for fun outside of an organized setting. If you play in your first organized rec season and afterwards have a hunger to get better, then seek out a trainer. If you spend a lot of time in the driveway shooting, then definitely come see a trainer so he/she can help you use correct form to begin muscle memory magic.
“I just made my 7th grade team and I’m the best player on my team. Nobody on my school really challenges me on the basketball court.”
Yes! Talented 7th graders don’t always ended up being talented high school players, so you always want to keep improving your game. If you’re the best in your school, expand your horizons. Are you the best in the district? In your area? Being good doesn’t mean you can’t be better. A good basketball trainer who’s played at higher levels of the game can also push and challenge you the way your school team may not.
“I got cut from my 7th grade team. I really wanted to make the team, but it turns out I’m not good enough.”
Yes! We work with numerous players like this. If you didn’t make your school team, you are ripe for training. You may not know how to improve yourself to the point of making it in 8th grade, but a good basketball trainer should be able to help. We can tell you lots of stories of players not making it one year, then getting with a basketball trainer, improving, and making the team the next year.
“I just got cut after the season of my 10th grade year. The coach says he doesn’t have a spot for me on the JV or Varsity teams next season.”
Yes! I’ve actually been there. When a coach cuts you after a season, it’s because he doesn’t believe in what you can develop into that next fall. You have the choice of either believing what he says about you or fighting back and improving as a player and teammate. Sometimes getting cut is the wake-up call a player needs, and it is the perfect time to get with a quality basketball trainer and improve upon all aspects of your game.
“I’ve just received a football scholarship to my dream school. I’ve enjoyed basketball training up to this point, but I’m done playing. I’m strictly a football player now.”
Basketball training is generally designed to help you be the best player you can be in an organized basketball setting. If you’re not longer competing in that setting, by all means give that extra time and energy to something else. You’ll have fun taking what you’ve learned in basketball training up to that point to be a great recreational basketball player for the rest of your life.
“Coach, I just won District MVP and just got a full basketball scholarship to my dad’s alma mater for the fall. I made it!”
Yes! You’ve succeeded at one level and will start on a new journey to succeed at the next one. You don’t need to stop improving – you actually need to improve more now! Keep training and never take on the attitude that you already know enough.
“Coach, I just signed my first NBA contract. This is a dream come true. Thanks for all you’ve done for me. I’m in the big leagues now!”
Yes! The best players in the world still work with basketball trainers. Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant, Dwyane Wade, Lebron James and Kyrie Irving are some of the guys who still work with basketball trainers in the offseason. And yes, they are better players than their trainers ever were, but they never stop learning from and being pushed by them! Even successful professional players understand the benefit of constant player development.
For the serious basketball player, basketball training gives you a leg up on your considerable competition. It is almost a must for those wanting to maximize their full potential. Every player and family has their own budgets and time constraints. Decisions are absolutely a family matter and this really only serves as a basis for some talking points.