Increasing your role and standing on your team can be a challenge but is definitely worth it in the long run. The question is how do players get there? Below I’ve listed a few questions you should ask yourself each offseason. These questions will help lead you in the right direction while also holding you accountable each off-season.
Are you better physically & mentally?
Skill development is huge when leveling up your game but it’s also very important to get your mind and body right. Many players struggle with consistently getting into the weight room and working on their body. It’s important to get stronger and push your body to its limits in the offseason. Basketball requires different forms of athleticism with agility and skills, so athletes need to be prepared and trained in both areas.
Mental growth is another aspect players should focus on each summer. Emotions can be all over the place during the season and at times, mentally draining. It’s important to recover and reflect on how to handle difficult situations better and remain positive during tough times. Players need to work on positivity towards others and themselves when shots aren't falling or they're not playing the minutes they want. Players need to commit to working towards becoming the best version of themselves which ultimately improves their game.
What did you add to your game this year?
Roles are important but every off-season players should try to evolve and add to their game. Most players think this has to be skills that help with scoring the basketball but that's not always the case. Oftentimes coaches will request players to be better defenders, rebounders, or even simply be in better shape. These skills may not seem glamorous but they are very important in a coach's eyes.
What are your coach's goals for you this year?
Another question to ask yourself is if you’ve discussed goals with you coach to understand the personal and team goals to you need to work towards. Without clearly understanding what your coach wants and needs it’s almost impossible to increase your role the way you want. This doesn’t always mean that you’ll hear exactly what you want from your coach but that's why conversations are extremely important. Either way you’ll be aware of what the expectations are and can always in turn hold your coach accountable as well.
How Talented is your team?
I can remember as a player thinking through the makeup of my team and the depth at each spot. I’d try to figure out where I fit in and how I could make my mark. Oftentimes, I had no clue what I was thinking and this was usually the opposite of what the coach had in mind. That said, it’s important to ask yourself how talented the team you're on is. If you’re playing with extremely high level players, your role may be focused in specific areas or minimal at times depending on your own skill level. Or, sometimes you’re the best player on a bad team with a huge role. Both situations can be beneficial and it really depends on your journey as a player.
Will Changing your role leave a void or hurt your team?
In my opinion, this is one of the most important and hardest questions players have to ask themselves. Will changing your role leave a void or hurt your team? Every player's goal is to be the best version of themselves and that vision usually includes being one of the top players on the team. Unfortunately it doesn’t always work that way, especially when players try too hard to navigate out of a certain role when the timing isn’t right. This could negatively impact the team in a variety of ways and create a void that isn’t always easy to fill. Personal ambition cannot be more important than team goals. When ego takes over it separates players mentally and that leads to poor play in practices and on the court as well. Make sure to have a win first mentality when developing your skills and also increasing your role. If you do so positive changes will happen in your favor more times than not.
Our goal at Dr. Dish is to provide insight and direction to players, parents and coaches. Preparing for greatness requires time, effort and dedication. If you want to take your game to the next level mentally and physically, be sure to subscribe to our blog and also follow us on IG, TwitterTikTok and subscribe to our YouTube channel. Most importantly make sure to train hard, train smart, and train with a purpose!