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Well, the outspread of COVID 19 has certainly brought things into perspective, with the world is faced with a dilemma of sorts- to maintain distance and hold on. We have proved our merit in terms of persistence and solidarity, as we moulded ourselves to the “new normal”. Yet, remaining in a standstill is not always a favourable option, and for athletes like basketball players, this time frame has been a massive struggle. Especially with all the sports centres and gyms closed, maintaining dexterity has become a task- but fret not! We are here for your aid!
For basketball, the plan is two-pronged- with a focus on skills and muscle flexibility. Stamina and flexibility play an important role- so you have got to switch the game with both exercises focused on agility, as well as basketball drills focused on sharpening your skills. Good thing – both can be done at home, with the presence of right basketball accessories and fitness equipment.
In respect to exercises, here are a few that can help:
Perhaps more than any other sport, basketball is seen as a contest of physical prowess. However, speed, lateral movement, and explosive power are all essential in basketball. If they lack strength in certain areas, even the physically endowed players will find it challenging to keep up with and respond fast on the court.
Here are ten easy basketball exercises that can increase your explosive power and lateral speed while lowering your chance of injury.
This is your best friend as lateral lunge mimics basketball’s standard defensive shuffle while opening up the muscles of the groin and hips. Here, step to the right, from a standing position. Remember to keep toes pointed straight ahead and feet flat and then, proceed to squat onto your right leg. For this, you need to keep the left leg straight and the weight on the right leg’s midfoot to heel. Squat as low as possible, keeping the left leg straight. Hold the position for 2 seconds and return to the standing position. Repeat this for 10 reps and then, switch sides.
The quality of your glute empowers your game- hence this is one of the best exercises to train them. Here, the firing and muscle-recruitment patterns of the glutes are utilized, as you start by lying face-up on the floor. Keep knees bent 90 degrees and feet flat on the floor, with a rolled-up towel between your knees. Form a bridge with hips toward the ceiling, which in turn squeezes your glutes. With your shoulders and heels remaining on the ground, hold the top position. Lower the hips to the ground without touching. Repeat this for 10 reps.
Want to ace the fast cuts and side-to-side movements? Increase the lateral power of your legs, with lateral bound. Here you need to stand balanced on your right leg, with your left foot on the ground. Crouching slightly with the right leg, and then jump to the left, using the leg and glutes. Land on your left leg, using your ankle, knee, and hip. Remember to maintain balance- you don’t want to hurt yourself. Hold this for a count of three, then jump to your right- repeat this 10 times, per side.
Medicine ball is a boon that every athlete needs to have by their side. For basketball athletes, you mimic jumping, as you do this special squat. Here you need to stand holding a medicine ball at chest level. Lower yourself into a squat, and extending through the hips, launch the ball and your body into the air.
Pullups are like brothers of jump shots- requiring the same efforts and working out the same muscles. To improves the performance of your lats, back, shoulders, and wrist, pepper your workout with pullups. Hanging from a bar with overhand/ reverse grip, pull your shoulder blades back and down, lifting your body up. Return to the fully extended position after each rep- this helps improve your jump shot.
Touted as the “power squat”, goblet squats help strengthen the lower body. For this, you need some help from the good old kettlebell. Hold the kettlebell with two hands against your chest, mimicking the motion of drinking from it like a goblet. Squat by sitting your hips, while shifting the weight to your heels without lifting the toes. Maintain contact between the kettlebell and your chest, while your elbows should gently touch your knees. Rise and extend powerfully through the hips- repeat the same for 10 times.
Basketball is a contact sport, with its set of unpredictable injuries. You need to prepare yourself for the worst and the single-leg hurdle hop prepares your body to land and absorbs force. Arrange a few low hurdles and stand in front of them, on one leg. Hop over all hurdles, holding the landing on the same leg. Make a point to control your landing to a softer level, absorbing the force through the hip and glute. Change sides and repeat on opposite leg.
Basketball is a play of jumps, with explosive motions being an accent. Hence, the ability to hinge from the hips, rather than jumping from the knees, is required. To condition the hamstrings, glutes, and back, Romanian deadlifts are just what the doctor ordered. For this, you need to stand, having your feet shoulder-width apart. Hold a dumbbell at each side, keeping the weight should be on the back half of your feet. Shifting the hips back, lower the dumbbells as far as you can, keeping your back straight. This will fire the hamstrings and glutes as your return to standing position- a continuous set of 10 reps should do
This is one of the best basketball workouts where you lay face-up on a bench with your hands towards your thighs and dumbbells at your outer shoulders. Raise the two dumbbells to your chest. Lower the other dumbbell till it touches the outside of your shoulder while maintaining a straight arm, then press it back up. Push harder with both hands at the peak of the action, as if you were attempting to punch through the roof. Similarly, move the opposite arm.
Last on our list of exercises for basketball players is a physioball leg curl, where on a physioball, you lie face-up with your legs straight and heels up. Squeeze your glutes to lift your hips and bring them closer to your body. As the ball approaches you, resist the urge to sag your hips. Leg curl for ten reps while extending your legs. Make sure your hips never touch the ground.
While your muscles are all fired up and raring to go, it is time for skill training to take place. How- you wonder? Simple- purchase indoor basketball hoop, a basketball and you are set. Practice the drills that were familiar to you, as a warm-up. Then, take up some challenging drills, to push yourself to the limit. It is important to go beyond your comfort zone, to get optimal results. Finally, time your moves well- it’s speed and accuracy that put you in an advantage.
We advise three full-body basketball workouts each week throughout the offseason. It would be challenging to do more than three lifting sessions each week of these exercises for basketball players.
Remember that while the above mentioned activities are excellent, they are not the be-all and end-all. Don't forget to perform single-leg exercises (variations of lunges) and focused core training (ab wheel rollouts, reverse crunches, etc.).
We advise that, as a professional, you switch up your set/rep schedule for your basketball workouts. Possibly like this:
On that particular day, perform four sets of 4-6 repetitions for each basketball exercise.
For each basketball workout on that specific day, perform three sets of 8–10 repetitions.
Perform four sets of six to eight repetitions for each basketball workout that day.
The weather outdoors may make playing basketball in the driveway or outside at the park a little more difficult as the winter months progress. Here are four basketball drills to do at home, even while watching television.
Standing with your feet together, move the ball around your body from right to left, starting with your head to practise your ball handling techniques and mimic a behind-the-back dribble motion. After circling your head with the basketball, continue to your waist, legs, and ankles.
Go left hand to the right again after climbing back up to your head. Keep your eyes up the entire practice to ensure you gain a feel for the ball without viewing it. Watch the clock to see how soon you can do this basketball drill at home.
With the help of this workout, you may hone your ball handling abilities and replicate a between-the-legs dribble. Start assuming a standing position with your legs spread apart and your knees slightly bent. Put the ball in your right hand through your legs from the front to the rear, then transfer it to your left hand.
Then, while holding the ball in your left hand, wrap it around the outside of your left knee before passing it to your right hand via your front legs. Once you've repeated this several times, turn to do a reverse figure eight, placing the ball in your right hand behind your right leg and moving it from back to front with your left hand.
This is an amazing basketball drill to do at home where by lying on your back and shooting the basketball into the air, you may develop your shooting muscles and improve your shooting technique. Repeat after catching the ball. As you extend your arm and release the basketball, pay close attention to your follow-through to achieve appropriate backspin.
With the help of this defensive posture workout, you can strengthen and extend your lower body. Your body should be in a squat position while you spread your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and bend your knees.
This helps you practise good defensive positioning by simulating a defensive position. As long as you can, maintain this posture. Try timing yourself while doing this basketball drill at home to see if you can maintain the posture longer each time.
So, these were the 10 best exercises for basketball players. Include warm-ups, rest, and nutrition into your training regimen to observe continuous improvement and increase body strength. Your capacity to effectively recuperate from your exercises will ultimately determine your results. Before working out the same muscle groups again, rest for twenty-four to forty-eight hours to give your body enough time to heal.
The above mentioned are the most effective basketball exercises to be practised by individuals. These include-
Players can choose any of the above-mentioned 10 basketball exercises. All these exercises are equally benefitting and effective. Just ensure to train your body from head to toe basis.
Our experts recommend players be religious towards their training schedules and workout schemas. You'll need to perform a lot of conditioning work to build the strength and power in your legs and glutes necessary to have the body of an NBA basketball player.
Consume meals high in carbs and drink a lot of electrolyte-containing drinks to replenish your energy. Ensure you are drinking lots of water as well. Get enough water before, during, and after your basketball game since dehydration causes weariness. Before the game, warm up.
Basketball is an outdoor sport and it is very difficult to practise it inside and at home. However, you can practise certain exercises to keep yourself fit for basketball and develop certain particular postures by practising them regularly at home.
So, there you have it- a comprehensive set of tricks to get your move back! To shop for indoor basketball hoops and basketball accessories, head here.
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