How to blow by your opposition WITHOUT being a track star

This is specific for basketball players (also relevant to soccer and football as well) but the overall theme is very important. Instead of worrying about what you do NOT possess, maximize whatever you have.

In high school I always thought that being able to run just a little bit faster, or jump a little bit higher would be what would push me over the edge and enable me to play at a superstar level. This is a very common belief that I shared with many of my peers and is indoctrinated by Sportcenter top 10. However, it is wrong.

No doubt it would help if you could jump a little bit higher or run a little bit faster. But the amount it would help is overstated. I have learned this the hard way throughout my basketball career. I was infatuated with improving my vertical jump during high school, which caused me to neglect improving other more important skills such as developing better body control. It is very commonly misunderstood that if someone runs really fast or jumps high they are “athletic”. I view athleticism more holistically. Athleticism is the combination of how much power output you have AND how well you control it.

After competing at the NCAA Division 1 level for track and field my speed and vertical jump has sky-rocketed but my basketball game has regressed. This seems counter intuitive but my game has regressed because I am not able to control my athleticism or execute at top speed anymore.

I love to watch mix tapes of up and coming star basketball players to learn and pick-up moves that are working well for them (you should pick up on this reoccurring them, success leaves clues. So study successful people/athletes). Below is a mix tape of Marcus LoVett who is an up and coming superstar point guard. Physically he is average compared to what would be expected for a high major division 1 basketball recruit. What allows him to dominante is his ability to change his pace and control his speed! Speed is useless if you can not control it. A great example of this was one of my teammates on my high school basketball team who was a track star. He ran the 100 m in 10.7 seconds during his sophomore year of high school. You may think that he would have absolutely dominated on the court. Unfortunately for our team’s record he did not. Whenever he tried to use his full speed on the court he could not stop! Therefore despite having great speed it was useless because he could not control it.

Do not get me wrong, jumping higher and running faster will help your game. Just ensure that you focus just as much effort on developing body control

Summary 

Focus on change of pace to beat your man

Continue improving your power output but do NOT make that sole focus of your training if you are an athlete that competes in a highly skilled sport (ex. basketball). Improving your ability to control your body is just as important.

Be Happy and Chase your Dreams,

Pavan Mehat

PS Here are a couple of ways to connect with me if you have any questions or have any specific topics you would like me to address.

Pavan Mehat’s LinkedIn

Pavan Mehat’s Instagram

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