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A Theme Can Motivate Your Basketball Team

Sep 16, 2008
This winter I am really looking forward to coaching my Jr High baskteball team. I am counting the days until football season ends and basketball season begins. The turnout has been great for our pre-season basketball conditioning sessions. Just about every athlete not playing a fall sport has been attending. At this point in time I am working on developing a full season strategy for the upcoming season. A big issue I want have been working to overcome is to set a tone for the upcoming season that I can call upon as the season progresses. Some people refer to this tone setting as setting the theme for the season. I completely endorse the idea of having a great theme for the season.

Most teams search hard to find that one word that will serve as the theme for the season. This word will be used as the team breaks from time outs during games, when practices are concluded and when the team needs a little help getting through some difficult drills. The theme is a great way to get the team focused on getting to the next level and getting everyone to rally around the concept. One football coach in our area told me his theme for the year is the number One, which implied he wants to win just one game. So we are on the same page, I am in need of something a little more inspiring than that.

Our varsity team at the high school has struggled to be 500 for the last several years. Injuries, bad calls, new coaches, bad grades, bad parents - the list goes on as to the reasons behind it. Please notice I did not mention that we have not been very good, but that has been the main driver behind the poor seasons. Schools all go through time frames like this. Ours has just stayed a little longer than we expected. One of the first things our new coach did was set the theme - Believe.

I like and support this theme for a large number of reasons. The most glaring reason to support the theme is that it addresses the main issue of not believing we can win games. This theme will help the players to get more focused on all things basketball, something that has been lacking in the past. A new atmosphere should help the players on the team to focus on helping each other to improve and will result in a better win percentage for the team. At our school the varsity basketball team has been missing that atmosphere. At the Jr High we will begin to change that this year. It is my hope that the attitude remains with the players as they continue to improve their skills and move up the ranks at our school

Success at the Jr High level is measured by how much players develop during the course of the year. If we can teach the players to play great defense and improve their fundamentals of the game we can care a lot less about winning games and take joy in other successes and know we had a great season. I BELIEVE that we can do a great job with the players this upcoming season.
About the Author
Coach Chuck Stewart operates a basketball web site offering basketball video instruction from some of the games greatest coaches. The basketball videos cover all aspects of the great game of basketball. Coach Chuck has coached basketball teams for 11 years and enjoys teaching young players the joys of the game of basketball.
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