One of the biggest things that is required to become a great shooter in basketball is CONFIDENCE.
It gets thrown around constantly from coaches, parents, teammates, and fans: "Shoot it with confidence."
During shooting slumps, it's constantly recited: "He/she needs to get their confidence back."
It sounds so simple, but building and maintaining confidence doesn't come out of thin air. It has to be built though hard work, discipline, and attention to detail.
That being said, here are 8 things all shooters can do to constantly increase confidence in their shot.
1. Start by Making Form Shots
If you've been following us, you probably notice that we're a broken record when it comes to form shooting. But we can't emphasize it enough. If done properly and focused, form shooting not only helps with building mechanics but it can significantly help shooters mentally as they constantly see the ball go through the hoop.
The next time you hit the court, I challenge you to spend 5-10 minutes focusing specifically on form shooting and working your way back. I guarantee after that quick session, you'll be more confident shooting the ball from all over the court.
2. Constantly visualize Makes
This is something all players can do away from the court. When you're thinking of previous games/practices/workouts, CONSTANTLY play back the shots you made. Remember the situation, your form, release, and ultimately how the ball entered the hoop.
Also, I recommend visualizing success of upcoming games. Imagine yourself coming off a screen, catching and knocking down a shot. Imagine yourself driving to the hoop and pulling up for a made jumper. The more you envision makes, the more confident you'll become.
3. Watch and Analyze Film
This takes visualization to the next level. If you have access to your game film, go through and watch all of the shots you made. Instantly your confidence will go up after watching these shots. Don't be shy on rewinding and watching them over and over again.
For the shots you miss, analyze why. Were you off balance? Did you not hold your follow through? Was it not a good shot? This can go for when you train as well.
4. Always Catch Ready to shoot
This is something rather simple but can do wonders for your confidence. By having hands ready, getting feet ready as the ball is in the air, and being 100% ready to shoot when catching the ball will help increase confidence and ensure you're completely prepared to knock down a jump shot.
This goes for games and training. During shooting workouts, you have all the time in the world to get your shot off and there's no defensive pressure. That's a big reason why players aren't as confident in a game situation - it's much more chaotic. It's essential to train game-like situations to translate into actual games.
5. Only Take Quality Shots
Shot selection is critical at all levels. Understanding what a good shot is for you and executing those shots in a game will help raise your confidence. On the other hand, taking bad shots will only cause you to second guess yourself and decrease your confidence.
6. Stop Being Afraid of Misses
This goes hand in hand with the last point. Once you know what a good shot is for you, shoot those shots with 100% confidence. Understanding that you won't hit every shot is essential, though you should EXPECT every shot you take to go in.
While being afraid to miss shots may stem from coaches or teammates, it's important to have open communication on what a quality shot is. Once that is established, there's no need to fear misses.
7. Track Progress and Improvement
At Dr. Dish we love the old saying, "You can't improve what you can't measure."
This is especially true when it comes to shooting. It's hard to build confidence if you're not sure you're improving. Once you establish a baseline, set goals, and reach them, your confidence will skyrocket.
The Dr. Dish Training Management System is so powerful when tracking progress and improvement. Here you can check out workout trends, overall leaderboards, leaderboards by workout, and more. This is a tremendous tool to build confidence and ensure your hard work is paying off.
8. Get GAme-Like REPS REPS REPS
Last but certainly not least...you HAVE to get up consistent, purposeful, and game-like reps if you want to build TRUE confidence. While the 7 things above can help with building mental strength and provide a solid foundation, they won't be nearly as effective if you don't get up reps.