Newsletter #167

August 21, 2019


Today's Quote:  "Failure to prepare is preparing to fail." - John Wooden

Today's Theme... Planning Practices 

John Wooden has said he and his assistants often would spend more time planning a practice than the actual practice itself lasted.  Don't just come to the gym each day without a plan and think you can just "wing it".  Here are some pointers for good practices:

Weight Training/Stretching Exercises
We usually do our weight room workout followed by stretching just before practice.  We don't want to lose valuable gym time doing these exercises.

Selecting/Using drills
Select your drills from "Selecting and Using Drills".  You might have a "core" of selected drills that you use most the time. You can throw in other drills from time-to-time to teach specific skills.

Move quickly from one drill to another... don't spend half of your practice time on one drill.  Don't get bogged down.  Budget your time for each drill.

Make drills competitive... there should be winners and losers, with the losers doing pushups, lane-slides or running.

Follow an up tempo exhausting drill something less aerobic... like free-throw shooting.

All players should do basic fundamental skills drills... including ball-handling/dribbling, shooting, passing, etc.

Post/Perimeter breakdown drills... if you have a good assistant, you can plan some time for individual skills with perimeter players on one end of the floor, and your post players on the other end.

Conditioning drills... for well-conditioned players, use full-court transition drills, full-court speed-dribbling, passing and other similar drills.  I believe your players and team will improve much more by doing conditioning drills with a ball, than a lot of push-ups and running without the ball.

Do not show favoritism... make them all work equally hard.  Try to instill in your star players that they must lead by example, and be willing to work harder than anyone else.  Don't ignore "role players"... make them feel they are contributing and encourage them.

"Open" or "closed" practices... whether to allow parents, spectators in the gym during practice is up to you and your philosophy.  But make sure the rules are established from the start of the season.  If you allow parents in the gym, they must realize that it is a classroom and must keep quiet and not "coach" the kids from the stands.

End practice on an upbeat, positive note... do something fun that builds team spirit.

See these articles for more details: 
Planning Practices

Important Points to Consider When Planning a Basketball Practice

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Put in a new offense or defense this season.
Run a special inbounds or buzzer-beater play and look like a genius!
Use a special defense to shutdown a star player.
Teach your team how to break a press.


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