One question we get asked by coaches constantly is “Can I actually change a player’s shot?”
There are many coaches who believe a player can not change their shooting form from negative to positive simply because they have never seen this type of transformation. I recently was talking to a high school coach who remarked, “I’ve never had a freshman who was a poor shooter and by the time he was a senior, became a quality shooter.”
Recently I was speaking to a former great shooter at a very well known D-1 University. He said, “My alma matter has never improved a shooter in the past 25 years. They have never taken a poor or average shooter and turned them into a great shooter.”
How is this possible? We do believe most players and teams don’t improve in shooting because a lack of mechanics., lack of discipline and a lack of practicing.
Shooting a basketball and becoming good at it starts with mechanics and reps. They go hand in hand. You can’t be a quality shooter without one or the other.
Discipline, however, may be the key to becoming a great shooter. Players MUST have discipline to be a quality shooter and often times the coach has to instill this discipline into that player.
We have found out through our training, camps and clinics that the way most players will change is through punishment. Sounds brutal must let me explain.
When I was growing up some three decades ago, we did what coaches asked. Players today are different–less attention span and more independence.
Ask a player, “What will make you change your shot? If I tell you that you should change it OR if I say, ‘If you don’t do it this way you owe me 2 miles.'” They will pick the latter every time.
Yesterday we conducted a camp in Fitchburg, MA for 60+ players. We were going over an important shooting aspect called “one eye” shooting” when I realized after five minutes that very few players were doing it correctly. I then got everyone together and said, “See the center circle. We call that the Dungeon of Doom. If any coach sees a player not doing the one eye, that player will take his or her ball and sit down in the Dungeon of Doom for one minute. You will be in a timeout.”
Of course no one wants to be in a timeout and amazingly over the next 5 minutes every player did the one eye shooting correctly. No one entered the Dungeon of Doom.
At Pro Shot, thousands of AAU, Middle School, High School and College programs use our shooting program. Some shoot the lights out. Others really don’t improve that much.
So what is the difference? Its truly about discipline starting with the coach. I don’t believe you can get your players to become quality shooters by being “a nice guy.” They need ramifications if they don’t do it correctly.
We have talked about Lutheran South High School Boys program before. Last year they shot 45% from three as a team (truly amazing) using the Pro Shot System. I asked their assistant coach, Dusty Holbrook, “How did you do it?”
He responded, “They must shoot our way (Pro Shot). If they don’t, they run. If they continue not doing what we want, they don’t play. It’s that simple.”
How many coaches have enough guts to do something like this? The rewards can be incredible. We have numerous teams that shot 40% last year for the three and all have the same philosophy as Lutheran South. The question is: As a coach are you willing to install shooting discipline into your players?