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PostPosted: 11 Oct 2016, 08:02 

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At the youth level, what role do you think basic athleticism drills have during practice?

I'm curious what others have done at this age, for a competitive team at this age. I'm talking about quickness, agility, and jumping type drills. Things like side to side jumps over a small hurdle (4 or 5 inches); front and back jumps over it; jumping rope, stopping and starting and changing directions quickly (suicides but with more lateral stopping and starting), ladder drills, basic core strength stuff (body weight squats, body weight jump squats), and balance drills. How much have you focused on this, if at all?

I realize a lot of it could be done alone, without the team. Thus you could argue it is wasting team practice time. However, I like the idea of spending practice time doing it, because I don't think they'll do it alone, and the team environment is a great motivator. And I believe many are missing some of these basic skills.


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PostPosted: 12 Oct 2016, 15:23 

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I'm more in the camp of incorporating some of those athleticism drills in with regular practice drills.

This doesn't really address some of the things your were talking about specifically, but allows for some coordination and agility. We time this drill and see which of our player's comes up with the best overall time.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bMaXO5WuxFA

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PostPosted: 13 Oct 2016, 07:48 

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Thanks Rob. Interesting drills, thanks for sharing!

You are right though, I was asking more about what I'd call basic athleticism drills. A lot done without a basketball which is sort of why I was asking. I have some ideas of what I'd like to do; it was more a concern of the value of such drills at say the 8~10 year old age. From what I've seen, there is a lot to be gained just by improving many kids ability to jump and land and jump again, stop quickly and balanced (this is a big one), improve their balance (sort of ties in with stopping quickly and changing direction), improving quickness, etc. A lot of this could be done more effectively without a ball.

The question was posed just based on a concern of spending practice time doing this, versus more traditional basketball drills. In theory many of the drills I am referring to could definitely be done alone. I just don't think they'll do them!


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PostPosted: 14 Oct 2016, 15:50 

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I understand where you're coming from and feeling the need to work on some athleticism that could be lacking. The two challenges I see with the 8-10 y/o group is enough time in practice to work on basic athleticism drills and keeping the kids interested through those drills. Which is why I like combining practical basketball skills and adding some of the things you're talking about.

One thing I've done in the past is make up kind of an obstacle course with certain objectives throughout. Could be jumping over the blocks sideways 4 times before moving to the next station which could be the ladder and so on. If you keep the athleticism drills fun and competitive with possible rewards, I think you'll have more success with the younger ages.

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PostPosted: 16 Oct 2016, 05:48 

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I had similar thoughts and have tried to make athletic development a part of developing my daughters youth team. If I had them 3-5 days a week, I think I could have done a lot more. But for me, I found it difficult to find the time and expertise to really do things right. It was difficult to find time to study each aspects so we taught things technically correct. Even something as simple as a squat I find I'm spending an hour trying to research to figure out how to teach 8 year olds to do this properly.

Here's what I did:

- I highly encouraged all our players to be multi sport athletes. Soccer, swimming, flag football, gymnastics, softball, dance, etc, etc. I think this is extremely helpful!

- We only picked a handful of athletic aspects that I felt we could do a good job with and find time for. For example, we always worked on balance (http://f-marc.com/11plus/exercises/10-2-single-leg-stance-throwing-ball/)

- We focused on man to man defense and played 1v1 full court defense drill almost every day.

- Played a lot of competitive and small sided games that both developed skills and athleticism.

- Got creative with ballhandling drills to challenge coordination at a young age.

- Implemented a dynamic warm up:
http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/haefner/dynamic-warm-up-for-basketball-strength-athleticism-and-injury-prevention/

- Most of our players naturally developed great body control and athletic movements. However when a player struggled (ex: had shoulder lean when changing direction even after giving several months to learn naturally), we took them to the side and broke things down to fix fundamental movement technique.


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PostPosted: 14 Aug 2019, 10:48 
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As an update, I now have my kids follow this athletic development program:

https://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/pr/athletic-development-program.html

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http://www.BreakthroughBasketball.com


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