Importance of Planning and Tracking Basketball Training & Practices

By Kyle Gilreath

by Joe Lucas

Joe is the founder and head trainer at The World of Hoops. The World of Hoops provides intelligent and intense basketball skill and strength training, both online and in-person.

There is a reason lanes are painted on the highway; if drivers didn’t have those lines, no one would know where to drive. There would be many accidents, extreme congestion, and traffic would be worse than current levels. When you try to train for basketball or run a practice without a plan, it’s similar to attempting to drive on a road without lane lines.

We do change lanes when we drive, so it is important to know you can tweak your plan if there is a need. If your workout ends up taking a bit longer than planned, or something doesn’t feel quite right, spend extra time on it. If something jumps out at you, adjust accordingly. But we do need some lines, some structure, to put us on a path.

Basketball Training and practices are meant to help you work on your weaknesses, hone new skills, keep your strengths fresh and sharp, and to push you out of your comfort zone so you can improve. You aren’t going to just walk in the gym and accomplish everything necessary without a plan.

Here are some of the benefits of making basketball-planning part of your life:

  • Prioritizes work on weaknesses
  • Assures the plan is in line with short-term and/or long-term goals
  • Improves recording/tracking of workouts (there are actual planned workouts to log)
  • Sets a start & end point…instead of just quitting when you feel tired
  • Monitors/determines the volume of work you are doing (don’t want to over-train)
  • Adds variation to your training plan (some time to think can assure you don’t do the same thing day–in-day-out
  • Accelerates training progress

When you plan out your training or practices you need to create an actual plan! Meaning, you actually have created a workout and recorded it in a place that you can refer to while you are at the gym, whether it be on your phone or printed out on paper. Since you have your practice planned and documented somewhere, it makes it easy to go back to that plan and make notes or even keep track of how a particular drill may have gone (i.e. keep track of makes and misses, record how successful a team was with a drill, log what works/doesn’t work). This “tracking” or record keeping is almost as vital, if not equally as important, as planning. Here are some of the benefits of record keeping:

  • Get a feel for what drills you need to go back and work on
  • Track actual progress with data for real proof!
  • Remember things that worked really well in the past (if you are like me you and have forgotten a drill that worked out great the last time you used it!)
  • Share results with your coach, coaching staff, players, or other basketball instructors
  • Adjust future practices/sessions based on reviewing the plan/results.

The benefits of planning and record keeping are big! These are two very simple habits you can adopt to take your team or yourself to the next level. Great players and teams do small things to separate themselves from good players and teams. Planning and record keeping could be the factors to help you in your journey to the top of the basketball mountain!

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VP of Coaching Development @PureSweat| Astronaut High School Varsity Coach - Always learning!

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