One of the first things that became painfully obvious in the beginning of my coaching career was the fact that no coach can control everything that takes place during the game. No matter what I did, there were some things beyond my control. Being able to accept that one concept was a huge turning point in my career!
Instead of focusing on the negative aspects of coaching you need to focus on the positive and the things that you can determine and influence. For instance two of the main responsibilities coaches have is to one, put all of your players in a position where they can succeed and two, teach your players principles and values that will help make them better people.
On that note, one of the common things that frustrate nearly all coaches is low shooting percentages. However, you have to remember that It is your job to get your players open shots; it is their job to make them! Coaches help players develop basketball skills and then it's up to them to make it happen on the court.
If you have a player or even several players currently in a basketball shooting slump, here are 4 tips to help them bounce back and shoot better than ever before:
They first thing that happens to players in a shooting slump is they become hesitant. They begin to think about each and every shot and this in turn makes their shot much slower and changes their normal shooting rhythm. A great way to not hesitate is to get lost in the moment.
Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant have been heard a number of times saying one of the biggest factors of their success is their ability to get lost in the moment. One way to get lost in the moment is to focus on the team first and this can be accomplished by getting more engaged on the defensive end of the floor by talking and hustling. It is amazing how many times I see players do those three things defensively and then their shots soon start to fall.
Get Extra Shots Up
It is no secret to anyone that has ever played the game extensively, that the more you practice the more your confidence increases. In fact it is safe to say that the two always go hand in hand. Because of this fact it is vital that players in a shooting spend extra time in the gym working on their shot.
The physiological factor of seeing the ball go through the net time after time after time is going to have an enormous effect on them mentally. Another important reason to spend extra time shooting is that it allows the players to reset their shot.
Occasionally of the course of a season players unconsciously tweak their shot (not hold their follow through, shoot it lower than usual, bad footwork, etc.) so by spending the extra time gives them the opportunity to correct these faults and get back on track!
Get to the Free Throw Line
Players who are struggling while shooting the basketball should make an extra effort to get to the rim during the game! Just like extra shooting practice, free throws during the game gives an athlete a few extra shot attempts to once again make sure their form and techniques is on track!
Made free throws can also do wonders for a players confidence – just watching the ball go through the net could elevate a player’s attitude and confidence. If you are coach who notices that your best shooter is struggling from the field, before you sub him out run a designated play and get him to the free throw line! That free throw could get him off and running turn out to be the difference in the game!
The last shooting slump tip is to give positive reinforcement to your athlete! Quickly think back to when you were a player or even a teenager going through rough times. Do you ever remember thinking that all you needed was someone to believe in you? Well players today, especially those in a shooting slump, are going through the exact same thing and experiencing the exact same feelings.
A simple “Great shot”, “I believe in you”, “You’ll hit the next one” or just a quick high five goes a long ways in the eyes of players! Make the effort to reach out to your players in time of need! Not only is it the right thing to do but it just might the ticket to get him out of his slump!