As you get into game play in your season, building and maintaining confidence becomes so key! Here are a few ways to think about your confidence and how you have control over it.
-Put in extra practice-prove to yourself that you are ready! Putting in some practice outside of your team practice will greatly improve your confidence on the floor. Figure out what shots you will take in the game. Go work on those shots. Get some extra ball handling in each week. Play one on one with someone a little bit better than you to improve your defense in games.
-Hear the good in what you coach says. Many times athletes focus on the negative or the criticism from a coach. They likely said some positive things about your play too. Ask them what your strengths are if you don’t know! Play to those strengths and keep asking for feedback. Make sure you listen with open ears and pick up the compliments on your game as well as the constructive feedback.
-Prepare mentally. Think about how you want to show up in the game and focus on those behaviors beforehand. Watch some film of your games if you can. What do you want to do better the next time out? Easy to do but easy not to do: try some visualization. Close your eyes for two minutes and picture yourself in the game making great decisions, hitting shots, and leading your team. This will impact your play as your mind will see your best game. Don’t knock it til you try it!
Nobody can give you confidence. But you sure can work on building it and protecting it as you go through the season. Figure out what works for you, and stay positive when you don’t play great. Confidence can be the biggest separator you find this season!!!
One of the most important skills in basketball is shooting. This is a skill you should be building year round. What is your plan for getting in shots up during your season? Is it after practice with your coach or a teammate? Do you have a hoop at your house? Can you find gym space on the weekend?
A serious athlete that wants to be great and wants to help their team win will carve out some time each week to shoot. Track your shooting and be disciplined and efficient. Shooting after practices and on the weekend will give you more confidence in games to knock it down.
My advice: find a routine you like that offers you different lengths of time to spend working out (15 minutes, 25 minutes, and 40 minutes). Put up game speed shots from spots you are going to score on your team (be realistic!). Stick with form shooting to get your mechanics grooved, and then dive into your game speed scoring (yes, include finishes!). Don’t shy away from short workouts…making 50 or 100 shots in a short workout is much better than doing nothing!
Form Shooting Video
The Chicago Sky won the WNBA Finals on Sunday. In a best of 5 series, it only took them four games to beat Phoenix. This is the first championship for the Sky. Here are some interesting stats, stories, and quotes from some of the players.
-Point guard and All Star Courtney Vandersloot is one of the best PG’s in the league. She was drafted in 2011 from Gonzaga. Look at these stats in final game: 10 points, 15 assists, 9 rebounds! (She averaged 10.2 assists in the playoffs)
-Kahleah Copper, the finals MVP, was not even named first or second team WNBA. Her numbers in the 10 playoff games: 17.7 ppg, 5.3 rebounds. She was drafted in 2016 and didn’t start in the league until last season.
Best quote I’ve seen: "I came in and just tried to find a road,” said Copper when asked about joining the Sky then being a reserve for three seasons. “I didn’t play much, so let’s do some handshakes, let’s get everybody ready for the game, let’s just try to figure it out, just play your role, and that’s what I did. I’m just grateful for my process. I wouldn’t change anything.”
-Candace Parker - The story of the Finals. She signed with Chicago in the off-season (which is her hometown), leaving the team she spent the 13 seasons with in LA. She led this team and won her hometown championship. Put in perspective that she was drafted in 2008, the same year she was Rookie of the Year in the league.
"I play basketball, and there's far more serious things than that. But I want basketball to be a platform. I love the opportunities I've gotten from basketball."
The individuals on this team are interesting in and of themselves and have great stories. But the Sky won because they are a great TEAM. One last quote for you:
“In the end we all wanted to play for each other, and that’s what you saw tonight in this whole playoff experience.”
"Get Better" is our PEAK blog, providing you with content to help enhance your game, your mind, and your relentless pursuit of the process! Enjoy.
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