Summer Basketball Training Program :

The 5 Secrets of the Pros!

Article written and published by Steve ALEXANDRE

28th July 2021

Summer preparation

Imagine.

You go to the gym for the start of August. You get changed. You put on your outfit, your new basketball shoes. You are ready to play. Well, almost...

Your coach gives you the training programme: endurance, split training, muscle strengthening. No ball!

You could already feel your feet burning. Cramps coming on. Your breath catching. Ouch, this is gonna sting like hell ☹

But instead of grumbling, being scared or depressed, you start laughing.

The reason for this joy?

You have just finished your summer preparation. Better yet, this time you prepared in the summer. You used the best basketball training program to make your season a success. Your goal: to tear up everything in your path.

And rather than run away from this torturer's titanic agenda, you move to the front of the group. Ready to fight.

Why? Because you're as ready as you've ever been thanks to the efforts you made this summer.

Magic, isn't it?

You think it's impossible? It's not.

Dozens of NBA players use these secrets for a successful year. To break it all down when school starts. These secrets, I'll tell you.

Are you interested? Read on.

What is summer preparation?

The summer period is undoubtedly the most important time of the year.

Why?

Because it is the longest without competition. It lasts almost three months. Three months of training, playing, sweating. Three months of honing your game like a bowling ball.

The basics of your summer preparation: 5 secrets to success

Some will take the opportunity to relax and party.

What about you? Do you want to achieve concrete results?

This summer, take the time too... But lay the foundations for the next season. On the agenda: recovery, physical, technical and mental preparation.

As Einstein said "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results"..

It's easy to prepare effectively during the summer. I'm going to tell you the preparation secrets of successful players.

Go to preparation in summer is for pro?

Beginner, experienced, pro. It's important to train whatever your level.

Being in top form from the start will always give you a head start. Whether it's your opponents or your teammates.

When you don't train, someone gets better

Why make efforts in summer?

Thou shalt avoid injury

A basketball season is long and difficult. Almost 9 months of competition.

Preparing well physically will help you avoid injury. This is one of the 5 secrets to success used by Vince Carter to play 20 years in the NBA.

I'm talking about injuries from the summer break. You know, when the excitement of finally touching a ball is at its peak: sprains, tears, tendonitis.

The fitter you are the sooner you are

You've taken the trouble to exercise, to stay on course when others are at the beach. So your fitness will be above average. It's nothing like your teammates.

The recovery in the club will sharpen you more than the blade of a Japanese sword.

You will master your technique

The fitter you are, the stronger you are technically.

Want to break ankles like Kyrie Irving? Score in traffic like Steph Curry? Set up Russel Westbrook's wild accelerations?

Optimal physical condition will allow you to do all this. And more easily than before!

Your confidence will be boosted

In basketball, there are three essential components of your confidence: 

  • your fitness level
  • your skills
  • your success

Getting out of your comfort zone by training hard will boost your confidence. 

In the eye of the coach and teammates you will type

You read that right, I mean your teammates!

You play a team sport, so there is competition. Mind you, I'm not talking about tripping your friends. I'm talking about beating them. On the field. Fair and square. To win your place.

You want this place! Your coach will gladly give it to you if you are combative and sharp from the start.

In summer, here are your 5 secrets to success as soon as you start again

Now that you're here, I'm going to tell you the 5 secrets you need to know in the summer to succeed in basketball.

1. Your path you will know

The most important thing in summer to succeed is to know where you are going. Knowing what you want. In short, I'm talking about having clear goals. Knowing your goal. Your dream.

Is it for example :

  • have a good time with your teammates
  • have interesting results
  • becoming a professional player

Depending on the answers, you will make more or less effort.

So, I invite you to write down your goals, your dreams. This will help you to clarify your vision to achieve your goals.

Successful players rarely got there by chance?

2. Thou shalt heal thy sores

In March 2020, one of my players, Morgan, sprained his ankle. After that, the season came to a halt during the first confinement. During this forced isolation, Morgan chose to strengthen his shoulders. Instead of treating his ankle...

Guess what happened.

When he resumed, the ankle was still sore. He couldn't play basketball again. Imagine how frustrated he was. His disappointment.

You've probably had this kind of injury before:

  • Ankle sprain
  • Sensitive knee
  • Repeated back pain
  • Tendinitis

If this is the case, you will not be able to concentrate on your basketball with these little pains here and there.

Don't be like Morgan, take the time you need. Take care of everything before you start again.

Osteopath

Go and see an osteopath during the off season. It is recommended that you see him 2 or 3 times a year. Especially before you start physical therapy. Like Norauto, your osteopath will take care of your complete check-up.

Physiotherapist and physio

Let's get back to Morgan.

To treat his sprain or tendonitis, he would have had to do some physiotherapy.

Massages, physiotherapy and muscle strengthening would have done him good.

If you are in this situation, do you now know what to do?

3. Sharpen your body

Your weight is your best asset

I don't know where you live. But in the summer, it's normally nice and warm. It's the season for barbecues, ice-creams and sweet drinks.

What a challenge to maintain your body!

My (obvious) advice? Watch your weight. It would be a shame to feel anvils in your shoes.

How can this be done?

Nothing could be simpler:

  1. calculate your ideal weight
  2. eat a balanced diet: choose seasonal fruit and vegetables, avoid sauces
  3. hydrate properly: water rather than sugary or alcoholic drinks
  4. weigh yourself regularly

If you follow these tips, you will naturally regulate your weight.

Go further, longer

Good core work is great for your endurance and stamina. That means running further, longer, more often.

Therefore, I recommend a mix of endurance, resistance and split running:

  • Breathing easy* 40min to 1h: 1 to 2 sessions per week
  • Resistance :
  • 5 to 7 field widths in 30 seconds
  • 10 to 14 widths in 1 minute
  • 30/30 or 15/15 split (15s effort / 15s recovery)

I'm not going to describe the whole process to you in this article or you'll fall asleep.

However, I will do it very soon in a video YouTube available on my channel.

being able to run while talking

Run faster, jump higher

Speed and explosiveness are essential to basketball performance.

Explosiveness is your ability to trigger a muscle contraction in a very short time. Like a dragster.

My favourite exercises to improve it in basketball are :

  • Squat + jump as high as possible
  • Skipping rope 1 foot / 2 feet
  • Pliometry
  • Lunges with isometric contraction

My favourite is the burpee. It's a full body exercise for full body explosiveness. Need little time to be effective.

Regarding speed: 

  • short accelerations over 2 to 5 metres.
  • in all directions
  • a few minutes per session are enough.

The best workshops for improving speed:

  • Reaction exercises (upper and lower body)
  • Short cone circuits with turns and rotations
  • Very short sprints (2 to 5 metres)

Important: remember to warm up well to avoid injury.

Be stronger

Girding and strengthening muscles are essential if you want to be resistant to basketball.

Why?

  • Improve your posture, balance and strength.
  • Resisting contact
  • Reducing injuries

The advantage is that you don't necessarily need any equipment.

Examples: plank, push-ups, squat, burpees

Personally, I love using elastics. They are inexpensive, space saving, easy to store and take everywhere.

There are a number of possibilities for effective reinforcement:

  • Shoulders
  • Biceps
  • Triceps
  • Sheathing
  • Legs

Now that you know how to improve your physical qualities, in a moment I will tell you the fourth secret of your success.

Be more flexible

Stretching has always been controversial.

Should you do it before or after your sessions? Static or dynamic? For how long?

To all these questions, I would answer "it's up to you". laughing

Indeed, it is proven that they contribute to your muscular and articular flexibility and to your recovery. However, the benefits vary from person to person.

I have been testing and modifying for a long time. Here is what works for me:

  • before the effort: short (less than 8s) and dynamic repetitions

 

  • after a speed/explosive session: never, as there is little lactic acid in the body

 

  • after an endurance session: 30s repetitions a few hours after the session

 

  • rest period: 3 repetitions 45s per muscle

Test and adjust your stretching as needed.

Stretching has always been controversial.

Should you do it before or after your sessions? Static or dynamic? For how long?

To all these questions, I would answer "it's up to you". laughing

Indeed, it is proven that they contribute to your muscular and articular flexibility and to your recovery. However, the benefits vary from person to person.

I have been testing and modifying for a long time. Here is what works for me:

  • before the effort: short (less than 8s) and dynamic repetitions.
  • after a speed/explosive session: never, as there is little lactic acid in the body
  • after an endurance session: 30s repetitions a few hours after the session
  • rest period: 3 repetitions 45s per muscle

Test and adjust your stretching as needed.

4. Thou shalt improve thy fundamentals

The summer period is ideal for working on your fundamentals.

What are the fundamentals?

Typically, it is shooting, passing, dribbling, foot work, etc.

Of course, you can't perfect everything and risk spreading yourself too thin.

Therefore, the secret to success is to focus on only one or two weak points. The same goes for your strengths.

With this tip, you will develop your skills, your efficiency and therefore your self-confidence.

I advise you to take part in intensive basketball camps like the Worzy Basketball Camp. Progression and results guaranteed!

Work on your shooting and finishing

What is the main goal in basketball?

Good point. It's about scoring more points than your opponent!

Basketball is a skill sport. If you want to progress, you have to improve your shooting and finishing skills almost every day.

How do you do that? Well, in an organised way.

I recommend shooting and finishing sessions of about 60 minutes:

  1. Form and mechanics of static shooting (10 min)
  2. Static shooting per spot (20 min)
  3. Dynamic shots reproducing match situations (10 min)
  4. Finishes

Check out these two videos below that will help you score around the basket.

Corrects weaknesses

You know your weak points. Depending on your current level, they are more or less numerous and important.

Identify them. Write them down. Prioritise them. Which are the most urgent and important to fix?

This can be :

  • Your weak hand
  • The quality of your dribbling
  • Your shooting mechanics
  • Your physical qualities
  • Etc.

Once you have defined the areas for improvement, put in place a clear and structured programme of objectives.

Important: record and keep your results to measure your progress.

Note: sometimes it may be worth asking your coach what he or she thinks you should improve. This will give you some specific areas to work on.

Build on strengths

So you want to improve your fundamentals?

Again, limit yourself to one or two strengths.

Apply the same process as described above. This way you will achieve your goals.

Do you remember Dennis Rodman? The ex-Bad Boy of Detroit and then teammate of Michael Jordan. He made millions of dollars just by improving his defensive skills.

5. Build your mind

In basketball, there are three pillars for individual performance:

  1. The technique
  2. The physical
  3. The mental

This last pillar separates two players of similar level.

Imagine.

The match is tense. The score is 80 to 81 for the opponent. There are 4 seconds left to play.

You're on the free-throw line... You have two shots left.

In the stands, the fans are on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Your parents and friends are there. They are watching you as intensely as your coach, your teammates and your opponents. Succeed or perish.

I guess that you have already experienced this situation.

What is going on in your head? What are you saying to yourself at that moment? And if you fail, what will happen?

This is one of the moments when you measure the importance of good mental preparation.

  • Concentration
  • Confidence in yourself
  • Managing your stress
  • Internal discourse

Master these aspects of your mind and you will dominate the issue.

Create performance routines

A performance routine is a succession of actions performed more or less consciously. They are always done in the same order in order to achieve a given result.

In mental preparation, specific routines are put in place to :

  • concentrate,
  • manage your stress
  • improve your internal speech 

The aim is to achieve a level of well-being that maximises your success.

Creating a routine is relatively simple:

  1. Determine the desired outcome
  2. List the trigger (de-concentration, increased stress, etc.)
  3. Create an anchor (a word, a gesture)
  4. Carry out the successive actions to achieve your result

Finally, practice integrating this routine. Modify it so that it becomes effective.

Boost your self-confidence

Boosting your confidence is necessary for success in basketball.

If you understand the keys to self-confidenceI guarantee that your life will change. On and off the field.

Alone or accompanied?

Good question, thanks for asking!

Everyone is different. I have always preferred the advantages of preparing myself. I'll tell you why, even though I recognise that there are also disadvantages.

What are the advantages of training alone?

  1. Control your schedule. You do sports whenever you want
  2. Strengthening your mental abilities (motivation, self-discipline, confidence)
  3. Need no one but you
  4. Flexibility :
      • planning
      • exercises
      • of the difficulty
  1. Control your schedule. You do sports whenever you want
  2. Strengthening your mental abilities (motivation, self-discipline, confidence)
  3. Need no one but you
  4. Flexibility: possibility to modify :
      • the schedule
      • the exercises
      • the difficulty

And the disadvantages

  1. Loneliness in the effort
  2. Lack of competition
  3. Lack of team spirit
  4. Risk of loss of motivation/dropout
  5. Any other reason

You can also choose to do some activities alone, and others with a partner.

It's up to you to decide what suits you best.

  1. Loneliness in the effort
  2. Lack of competition
  3. Lack of team spirit
  4. Risk of loss of motivation/dropout
  5. Any other reason

You can also choose to do some activities alone, and others with a partner.

It's up to you to decide what suits you best.

How much does it cost?

The price of optimal summer preparation varies according to your needs.

You can prepare yourself, get a training plan or hire a coach.

In any case, this involves a certain budget.

Alone you will move forward

If you prepare yourself, your budget is very limited. You will simply have to

  1. Define your goal: free
  2. Plan your preparation: free
  3. Get the right equipment
    • A rubber band: 10€.
    • Running shoes: €60
    • A sports outfit: 30€.

4. Taking action: free

    This will cost you about a hundred euros.

    A programme thou shalt order

    Ordering a training programme is a good compromise. Especially if you don't know how to do it, but you have the motivation and discipline.

    To get it, you can contact me here. The medium and long term benefits are worth it.

    Then all you have to do is take action

    A coach thou shalt employ

    I would advise you to get a coach if you find it difficult to motivate yourself.

    What's in it for you?

    He helps you, guides you, kicks your butt if necessary and motivates you.

    Choose a coach who will accompany you on the 3 pillars of performance: technique, physical and mental.

    A successful summer is a successful season!

    It's up to you!

    And you, how do you usually prepare your season?

    Tell me in the comments below.

    As you can see, it becomes essential to go beyond yourself and out of your comfort zone. 

    It's up to you!

    Steve

    Reliable shot means more baskets scored

    Request your access to the free training course "How to become a great shooter (even if you started basketball late)?

    Presentation

    Steve Alexandre

    My name is Steve ALEXANDRE. I am a basketball coach, certified by the French Basketball Federation, and certified mental coach.

    I help basketball players to prepare effectively to perform better and achieve their goals.

    Through videos and articles, online and face-to-face training, you will learn to improve your technique, strengthen your mental and physical abilities to boost your performance.

    Follow me on social media

    Would you like to receive new articles before they are published?
    Subscribe to the newsletter now

    Presentation

    My name is Steve ALEXANDRE, I am a certified coach of the French Basketball Federation, a certified mental & physical coach. Assistant-coach for Breakthrough Basketball Camp USA.

    Do you want to score more baskets?

    Here is a FREE video training to help you improve your basketball skills, improve your shooting skills.

    Discover my 7-step method to score more baskets, even from afar.