Topeka Sizzlers Top 5 Tips for a Better Basketball Bod

To excel as a professional basketball player requires a devotion to conditioning which will boost your speed, stamina, shooting, and mental toughness. Even if you’re not an aspiring pro basketball player, these same routines can help you live a longer, healthier life.


1. Front squat

A solid base is important if you want to get better at basketball. You don’t want to lose your balance every time an opponent bumps you.

Along with making your legs, trunk, and lower back strong, front squats will teach your body proper biomechanical alignment. Tall people tend to naturally squat wrong by bending forward instead of sitting deep—and that’s not a strong position. When doing these, only squat down until your knees are at 90 degrees, since that’s the range of a defensive stance.

How to do it:

  • Grab a pair of dumbbells and stand with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.
  • Raise the dumbbells upward and rotate your hands so they’re in the same position they’d be for a barbell squat (might require a lower body “kip” [dynamic move to hoist the weight] if you’re using heavy weight).
  • Descend into a squat position while keeping your back straight, your chest upright, your elbows parallel to the floor, and your butt over your heels.
  • Once your knees reach 90 degrees, return to the starting position.


2. Side plank leg raise

In every facet of the game—shooting, defending, sprinting off the court in shame after launching an air ball—you’re using core strength. Strengthening your core is essential if you want to get better at basketball.

How to do it:

  • Lie on your side, keep your legs straight, and prop yourself up on your arm or elbow.
  • Raise both the upper leg and arm (point that upper toe downward).
  • Hold the position for 30 seconds, then switch sides.


3. Squat hops to wall squat

The first thing you do when you’re tired in basketball is start to stand up and lose the position where you are strong and laterally quick. This squat hop to wall squat duo will supply your lower body with strength and stamina.

How to do it:

  • Get into a defensive stance (legs bent 90 degrees, back straight, head up), arms out like you’re guarding someone.
  • Perform 16 jumps rapidly (4 forward, 4 sideways, 4 to the other side, and 4 backward) and repeat it 4 times.
  • Find a wall and get back into your defensive stance with your arms and fingers extended and your back against the wall.
  • Stay in that position until failure.


4. Line hops

Proprioception is an internal mechanism that allows us to do cool things like control our limbs without having to look at them while they work. That’s how we can drive without the need to stare at our hands and feet.

Trouble is, that can be a detriment with basketball. We remember how to run, jump, and shoot from balling when we were kids, but if we haven’t played in a while our bodies may not be conditioned to carry out those in-game movements without suffering an injury.

How to Do It

  • Tape an “X” on the floor.
  • Hop quickly over a line, changing direction after every 5 jumps.
  • After 30 jumps, rest 30 seconds and complete another set.


5. Curl to overhead press

It is vital to strengthen your upper body if you want to get better at basketball.

How to do it:

  • Grab a pair of dumbbells and let them hang at your sides.
  • Perform a squat until your thighs are parallel to the floor.
  • Return to the standing position and do a biceps curl.
  • When the dumbbells reach your shoulders, flip your hands over and press them over your head by thrusting from your hips (called a push-press).
  • Reverse the move, slowly, to the starting position, and repeat.


Topeka Sizzlers Basketball

Head Coach Calvin Thompson

(816) 536-4667

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