Pre-Practice Self-Awareness Review:
- Mindset Reset:
- Visualizing overcoming a challenging opponent using speed and jumping as weapons of choice.
- Recalling a past successful performance to boost confidence. Think of a time you ran the floor with everything you had and converted a layup above the backboard or rim.
- Setting a specific intention to stay positive throughout the session. Positive and intentional to invest in speed, jumping and effort.
- Committing to maintaining focus and avoiding distractions. You should be ahead of the point guard on almost every single play you don’t get the defensive rebound. And then you want to sprint rim to rim if you get the defensive board.
- Establishing a mantra or affirmation for the session, e.g., “I am unstoppable and beat my opponents senseless with my commitment to run and jump at max effort”
- Visualize Maximum Effort:
- Imagining executing a fast break flawlessly.
- Visualizing sprinting full-court, beating everyone down the floor. Time after time make your first three steps as big and as explosive as possible. Count 1, 2, 3 as you explode.
- Picturing fighting through screens with maximum effort.
- Envisioning being so stupid, you actually believe every rebound is your rebound above the backboard too!
- Seeing oneself rebounding aggressively amongst traffic with multiple efforts. .
- Purposeful Goal Setting:
- Aiming to make 50% of attempted shots.
- Setting a target for sprinting full court in under X seconds.
- Vowing to make every jump as high as possible.
- Committing to intense defense, denying every pass.
- Establishing a goal to communicate loudly and clearly on every play.
- Intrinsic Motivation Calibration:
- Identifying a personal reason for wanting to improve, e.g., earning a scholarship.
- Recalling the end goal of becoming a college player each time effort wanes.
- Reminding oneself of the rewards of hard work, like starting on the team.
- Focusing on a role model’s work ethic and commitment. Find an NBA or WNBA player to emulate.
- Setting small, incremental rewards for maintaining high intensity throughout practice. Self high fives!
- Physical Preparedness:
- Ensuring adequate hydration before starting.
- Completing a thorough warm-up routine.
- Checking that all necessary gear is comfortable and secure.
- Doing mental checks on each part of the body to ensure readiness.
- Focusing on maintaining a poised and athletic stance throughout practice.
Post-Practice Self-Assessment and Grading 1-10 with 10 Being Best Effort
- Effort Evaluation:
- Assessing the level of hustle displayed in every drill.
- Reviewing whether maximum effort was given in every sprint.
- Evaluating the commitment level in every jump and reach for the ball.
- Reflecting on the energy invested in every defensive stance.
- Analyzing whether the energy and intensity were sustained from start to finish.
- Intensity Improvement:
- Rating the overall energy level compared to the previous session.
- Assessing the fervor in executing each play.
- Evaluating whether reactions to play developments were swift and vigorous.
- Reflecting on whether there was a proactive approach to every opportunity.
- Examining the aggression level in contested situations.
- Running the Floor:
- Timing each full-court sprint and comparing it to previous times.
- Counting the number of times beaten opponents down the floor.
- Assessing effort levels in transitioning from defense to offense.
- Reflecting on the sense of urgency displayed in fast-break situations.
- Evaluating whether there was a consistent sprint back on defense.
- Vertical Leap Commitment:
- Measuring the height of jumps in each leap.
- Counting the number of successful high-reach rebounds.
- Assessing the level of exertion in each jump.
- Reflecting on whether maximum height was reached in block attempts.
- Evaluating the effort invested in elevating for jump shots.
- Self-Reflection on Progress:
- Assessing improvements in intensity and effort levels.
- Reflecting on the achievement of the set goals for the session.
- Evaluating the success in maintaining high energy throughout practice.
- Reviewing progress in specific areas targeted for improvement.
- Analyzing whether there was mental engagement and focus from start to end.
By systematically evaluating each session against these specific, measurable actions, the player can gain clearer insights into her progress and areas needing more attention, making her journey toward becoming a college basketball player more structured, intentional, and successful.
Conclusion: Achieving Basketball Excellence through Elevated Intensity
Transforming basketball intensity is a meticulous and deliberate process, requiring unwavering commitment, resolve, and effort from the player. By enhancing training intensity, developing mental toughness, elevating practice efficiency, and focusing on comprehensive improvement, players can significantly elevate their performance, making them well-positioned to reach college basketball level and possibly advance to professional careers in basketball. Intensity should be a focal point of each workout with a scientific and focused ramp upward.
Every aspiring player must ask themselves, “Am I doing enough to transform my basketball performance?” By adhering to this guide and checklist, players can ensure they are on the right path to achieving basketball excellence and realizing their dreams. Tomorrow at practice… you begin transforming basketball intensity thru self awareness and motor.
Shout out to the inspiration for this article… CG… and her continued success in the game she loves.