If you would like to become a successful basketball coach, then you definitely need to be thoroughly knowledgeable about the fundamentals of basketball, including the X’s and O’s of defense and offense as well as the many drills that are available to use.
However, just having the knowledge by itself isn’t enough to make you into a successful basketball coach.
To be a successful basketball coach, you also must have the ability to teach. You need to have the ability to present basketball knowledge and information in a way that all players can quickly understand and learn. Every successful coach not only can teach the entire team but can provide effective individual instruction as well whenever it is needed.
The ideas below are fundamental pieces of advice for anyone who teaches basketball. Improve and work on these concepts that are a part of your basketball coaching. You will become an ever more successful basketball coach if you do that.
Use a simple teaching style
The K.I.S.S. principle is always good to keep in mind. Explain things, but keep things to the point and short. In my experience, a majority of players love to learn, but they like to be able to use what they’ve learned. If you are hard to understand or ramble on, players will start tuning you out. This will result in them missing some of the important instructions that you are providing them with. So make sure that your presentations are kept precise, simple and clear.
Follow a progression in your teaching
Calculus isn’t something we teach to first graders. We start out by teaching children addition and subtraction and work up from there. A progression is needed so that more complex math concepts can be understood later on. This same concept applies to all aspects of basketball. Before players can learn various dribble moves, they first need to learn how actually to dribble. Prior to your team being able to use the trapping pressure defense, first they need to learn to play help side defense and how to defend both off and on the ball. Progress with your players and team when they are ready. Just make sure they continue to progress forward.
Use The Whole-Part Method
Present your team or players with an overall concept first, and then go over it step-by-step. Teaching using the whole-part method works well for every concept and skill. The jump shot can first be taught as a skill before you break the entire process down to enable players to learn the right technique and form for shooting a jump shot. Present a new offensive system to your team; then break the process down into different drills so that your players can get familiar with it and be able to learn all of the necessary nuances and skills.
To Master The Learning You Must Repeat
Be sure that every player has ‘mastered’ whatever it is you are teaching them. It is true that some players are going to be able to master things a lot faster than others. However, the goal is mastery. Every player should have the ability to adequately perform whatever you have taught them. If he isn’t able to, then you need to take a closer look at your teaching methods to find ways to help him make improvements.
Work on a concept or skill until it becomes automatic. Once a play or skill has been mastered, you will still need to utilize repetition to make even further improvements and keep things fresh.
Teach you players individually through Demonstrating
Work with your players on an individual basis. Help your lesser-skilled players improve their skills. For players that are more advanced, teach them something that can help them improve a skill that they already have or something new. Be patient and be willing to correct and demonstrate a skill until the player masters it.
The demonstration is one of the most effective teaching methods to use. That’s basic common sense. However, I have seen many basketball coaches who don’t incorporate demonstration into their teaching in effective ways. Perhaps you are introducing a new set play to your team. Show the play to them. That way they’ll be able to see exactly how it is supposed to be run. It will help them learn and perfect the play faster. If you are teaching an individual skill, you should be the one who demonstrates it. You don’t need to have the best drop-step move of all time; all it means is that you have learned how to do the drop-step in order for you to be able to demonstrate the move and teach your players how to properly execute it.
Use visual methods
Incorporate different tools into your presentations and when you are teaching something. Classroom teachers use visual tools all the time when they are teaching a subject. Basketball coaches should do the same thing. If you want to teach players how to shoot the basketball, have them watch a video with a greater shooter in action. Use playbook-drawing software for diagramming your plays. Or use a markerboard or chalkboard if you prefer to keep things low-tech. Show game clips from your team’s games or other games to highlight both bad and good techniques. The options that are available to you are endless. The only thing stopping you is your very own creativity.
Use Constructive Criticism An Don’t Over-Coach
Criticism has a very negative connotation to it. When we need to correct something, where does criticism come into play? Also, our objective is not to be critical of everything. We want to transform a bad habit into a good one. Also, some players don’t respond in a positive way when they feel they are being criticized. Having the ability to constructively correct or criticize in a way that will help a player improve is a very valuable teaching method. Unfortunately, many coaches lack having this skill. If a player is incorrectly performing a skill, I would like to help them learn how to do it properly. There are numerous ways of being constructive. It ultimately comes down to extending grace, being patient, and demonstrating and teaching where needed. It isn’t constructive when you just criticize a skill but don’t help the player improve.
Doing a couple of things well is much better than doing many things poorly. If things aren’t going so well, you may need to scale things back. Get back to the basics and keep things simple.