login to members site  

Basketball Mental Aspects - The Mental Rebound
by Anthony B. Lanzillo

From the Coach’s Clipboard Basketball Playbook
"Helping coaches coach better..."

Tone Lanzillo is a mental prep coach to athletes who want to be mentally prepared to play their best game. He has worked with student-athletes, from middle school through high school and into college, in such sports as basketball, football, soccer and lacrosse. Over the past several years, he has written for a number of sports blogs and websites, including FirstDown Playbook, Coaches Training Room, Ultimate Hockey Source, and Lax Playbook.

Contact: Anthony B. Lanzillo

When you get the team together for practices, and especially when you are preparing the players for an upcoming game, talk to your team about how they can effectively deal with the various challenges and struggles they may face in a game.

The players need to realize that there could be moments during the game when they will get angry with themselves because of a mistake on the court, start to doubt themselves because their team is behind on the scoreboard or feel overwhelmed because the other team keeps making their 3-point shots.

Talk to your players about how they can "mentally rebound" at any moment of a game. Show them a few short and simple verbal cues that they can use at various moments of a game - especially in those moments when they could begin to question themselves or their team. And to help trigger these cues, encourage the players to visualize themselves successfully jumping up for a rebound.

playing hard!

The first cue is "all good". No matter what is happening on the court, the player needs to tell himself that it is all good. So, whether the player misses a foul shot, accidently steps out of bounds and turns the ball over or gets pulled out of the game by his coach for not playing well, the player needs to say to himself - "it's all good" - and find something positive from that experience or moment.

If the coach is pulling you out of the game, he is going to help improve your game. If you miss a foul shot, you ask yourself what did you just learn - and makes you a smarter player - that could help you the next time you find yourself at the foul line. And, if you stepped out of bounds, remind yourself how important it is to pay attention and know where your feet are.

The second cue is "got it". During any game-time situation, and when you may begin to question yourself or your skills, you simply say to yourself - "I got it". The message here is that not matter what is happening on the court, you are telling yourself that you have it under control and know what to do in that moment. You are focusing on what you want to happen and not worrying about what you don't want to happen. You also remind yourself of your personal strengths that will help you in the moment, and think of a positive feeling from a successful performance. You are focusing on the task at hand, and are tuning out any negative feelings that may distract you from carrying out your role or responsibility in that moment of a game.

If you are a basketball coach would like to know more about The Mental Tune-Up, drop Coach Lanzillo an email.

Copyright 2017, Anthony B. Lanzillo

Contact: Anthony B. Lanzillo

Related page: Basketball Mental Prep Playbook