Balance by Michael Lang

chicago elite classic

Written by Coach Peterman

I have coached at the NCAA Division 2 (Southwestern Oklahoma State University), NAIA (USAO), and JUCO Levels (Blinn College and Carl Albert State College) as well as high school. I just felt that fellow coaches especially young coaches need to constantly work on their “game”. Just like the basketball players that we coach. We as coaches need to improve ourselves. That is my story and why I do this blog.

November 17, 2014

Balance by Michael Lang

I. Concepts
A. Balance leads to Quickness.
B. Most players violate the 5th Principle of Balance and thereby greatly impede their quickness.
C. Balance, along with Footwork, must precede all fundamental teaching.
D. It is interesting that the only coach who seems to have fully emphasized the Principles of Balance in his teaching was arguably the most successful coach in the history of college basketball. UCLA’s John Wooden, Coach Wooden wrote, “Any physical activity and particularly basketball, starts from good balance. If you don’t have good balance and body control, I don’t think you can effectively execute the fundamentals. And the playing of basketball, in my opinion, is merely the quick and proper execution of the fundamental.

II. Fundamentals of Balance
A. The five Principles of Balance
1. The head must be directly above the midpoint between the two feet.
2. The chin must be p0arallel to the floor.
3. The feet must be at least shoulder-width apart.
a. On offense, for both shooting and the triple threat position, we like the non-pivot foot slightly advanced.
b. On defense, when guarding the dribbler, we want the feet as wide as possible while still maintaining quickness.
4. The weight must be on the balls of the feet and the heels must have floor contact.
5. The trunk of the body must begin in a medium center with emphasis on bending at the knees, not the waist.
a. Too many players continuously operate in a high center and take too long to get into motion.
b. Initial quickness comes from beginning in a medium center and Exploding to a LOW CENTER.

III. Drills for Balance
A. Gymnastics Drill
1. Stand on one foot, raise the other leg behind you.
2. Progress to jumping from one foot to the other foot.
3. Do the above with your eyes closed.
B. Stance
1. Go from high center to your stance, either triple threat for offense or your one on one defensive stance.
2. Coach can push your shoulder to test the strength and balance of your stance.

C. Weight Lifting
1. Free weights are the best because every time you lift the weight, you must get to a balanced position.
D. Jumping Rope
2. This exercise also demands adherence to the five principles of balance for proper execution.

We have a new basketball coaching contributor in Michael Lang. I think that you will like his basketball articles that he will be writing for Men’s Basketball HoopScoop.


Follow Coach Michael Lang on Twitter!!!

Click on the pdf link to download the Balance Article:

Balance by Michael Lang

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