Behind The Scenes Of Basketball
Learning to play basketball has been a craft that I have been practicing for years, putting in hundreds of hours, countless days in the gym, just perfecting my game, and through it all, it is something that can’t be perfected. I can’t even say that it is something that I am “good” at. All the hard work that I have put into getting better, with all the workouts, games, and days I have spent just moving a ball around, and I still make mistakes every time I play. Basketball seems easy enough watching it on TV, but there is more to it than what the average person thinks. Everyone thinks it is as easy as dribbling the ball around and putting the ball in the basket, but there is more to it than that. You have to think about the different elements that each player has to work on to get better; the physical ability and athleticism it takes to even move around the court, the defense, the offense, the scoring, the anticipation on another player, and the most important part of putting it all together. And learning all of these has been a never-ending challenge for me.I had first fell in love with the game at a young age back in elementary school, and I have been working hard at it ever since. It started off as just a game to play during lunch break, but then turned into an obsession, and as I got older, in my later teens when I was able to drive, I spent an extended amount of my time focused around the game.
The area I spend the most practicing is my offense. I have spent hours on end just dribbling the ball; dribbling standing still, while walking, and while running. Then when I learned how to just dribble I had to learn how to do different crossovers and moves with the ball. I would model this after what I had seen on TV and in other games, and apply them to my own game when I was practicing by myself. This would just be me starting at the top of the three-point line, and moving the ball in all different types of crafty ways, constantly changing directions to make sure I would be able to make it to the basket, with no one guarding me. This is the hardest part in teaching myself how to dribble because I get so discouraged. After all the failures, where I lose control of the ball and look stupid, or dribbling the ball off my own leg and having to restart from the top, or falling over cause I can’t keep up with whats going on inside of my head, it sucks. But after I start to get through it , then I start using my new skills on people in games, and the failure process starts all over. And I can’t put a time frame for how long this takes, because it is still an on going process.
The part of my game that I am most proud of would be my shot, its deadly, but it wasn’t always that way, there was a long, sweaty, frustrating process as well. It started off with just yarning the mechanics of moving my arms above my head to shoot the ball towards the basket. And once i figured out just the form then I learned what worked and what didn’t work just through trial and error, for example how my stance should be when I gather myself before shooting the shot. And then after I figured out just how to shoot the ball, then I started practicing with just simple repetition, because the most important part about basketball, is the muscle memory. The more you practice a certain move, the more natural and instinctive it becomes to play a certain way. So I would spend hours on end of just shooting the ball up at the basket hoping it would go in, chasing the ball all over the gym. Shooting hundreds of shots in just one day, until complete exhaustion just won’t let me shoot anymore, my legs unable to lift me off the ground to help me propel the ball, and my arms to fatigued to raise over my head, where I cant do much more that just throw the ball recklessly. And I had to learn that this was a stopping point, because I made the mistake of continuing half heartedly and it would result in an inconsistent shot form. After all the practice, came something pretty incredible The distance I am able to shoot the ball and make it, is incredible. The feeling of shooting the ball from where ever you want on the court, and whenever, and knowing that it is going to go in and make people go crazy, is rewarding because I learned that all the hard work pays off.
The most important part in my learning process was how important it was to fail.
When things are going wrong, and I’m soaked in sweat where my shirt is now just a wet cloth on my body, frustration starts kicking in and it kills my confidence, I learned that you can’t succeed without failure, because if I am doing things the correct way off the bat, then I’m not trying hard enough, I’m not taking game like shots, I’m not improving. So I fail harder, because then I know that I will get better, I will improve as a player, and I then I can be satisfied with what I have done everyday. Teaching myself how to play basketball has been a long journey that will only end when my body can no longer physically handle it. Starting from my first shot as a little one, to my first dunk, and until I can no longer play, I ill continue to work on my craft.