How to Schedule Basketball Workouts

Having a good workout schedule separates you from your competition when it comes to basketball and sports in general.

How to Schedule Basketball Workouts

One big difference that separates serious players from the rest of the pack is that the serious players have a plan for getting things done.

No professional shows up to work without knowing what he's going to do.

So one aspect of it, and a huge key to training effectively, is having a good training schedule.

You have to know in advance when to train hard and when to recover.

If you work with a personal trainer, you probably already have a personalized training schedule.

If it’s the case, I want you to analyze how your trainer approaches things and what the schedule looks like.

This way, when you don’t have access to a resource like this, you still can train effectively and get better.

San Antonio Spurs Training

A high performer has two types of days

When it comes to training, there are usually two types of days — high intensity (training hard; breaking down muscle & nervous system) and low intensity (recovery, low-intensity training).

There should be no in-between because on these you don’t train hard but also aren’t allowing your body to recover properly.

The magic happens on the extremes.

High-intensity

High-intensity days can involve aspects like:

  • Weight room sessions (lower body / core & upper body),
  • Skills training,
  • Team practices (depending on your coach),
  • Anaerobic conditioning (like running suicides or hills) and
  • Games.

On high-intensity days, you should train hard. They involve a lot of load on your body and nervous system.

There should be no middle-intensity type of days because on these you don’t train hard but also don’t allow your body to recover properly.

I’d recommend that you go for two-a-days with approximately 1,5h sessions on high-intensity days. Ideally, the sessions are 6+ hours separate from each other.

If you’re watching game film (which you definitely should), I’d suggest getting the most work done on these days, so you can also let your brain recover on low-intensity days.

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Low-intensity days

Low-intensity days can involve aspects like:

  • low intensity (stationary) ballhandling drills
  • shoot around (catch and shoot)
  • miken drills for finishing
  • mobility
  • aerobic conditioning (like going for a jog)
  • recovery tools (ice/heat, contrast therapy, massage/foam rolling, etc.)

If you did your work on high-intensity days, low-intensity days are where you are actually getting better.

During the day(s) before, you were breaking down muscle, and putting load on your nervous system.

Now you allow your body to recover and get better and stronger, so it can manage that load more effectively.

These days are just as essential to your success as the high-intensity ones. You can allow yourself to relax and prepare mentally for the work ahead.

I still want you to be active, though. You can work on the aspects listed before.

I recommend going for two-a-days with approximately 30 min sessions each. Ideally, the sessions are 6+ hours separate from each other.

At least one day a week, you should take a complete day off, where you don’t have to think about basketball and can refocus. Do things you enjoy, eat good food, watch movies, whatever you want.

This day(s) I call “Full Recovery Day”.

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A basketball player training

Putting it all together

So how do we make a training plan for a week? How does it look when we put it all together? Here’s how it goes:

The first thing we want to look at is — when do we have games and team sessions?

Then you schedule your week in a way that the high-intensity days match game and team practice days.

If you have high-intensity team sessions every day, talk to your coach about your schedule.

I'm not telling you to skip workouts. Show him that you are serious and want to get better, so you can both work together.

In general, there are two types of weekly training schedules:

Type 1 (alternating)

Day 1 - High intensity

Day 2 - Low intensity

Day 3 - High intensity

Day 4 - Low intensity

Day 5 - High intensity

Day 6 - Low intensity

Day 7 - Full Recovery

Example: We put the lower body and upper body in one training session and add some game/skills work as the 2nd training session (high-intensity days).

On low-intensity days, you let your body recover, go for a shoot around and do some stationary ballhandling.

type-1-1

It works great in-season and for players who don’t play much back-to-back.

Type 2 (back-to-back)

Day 1 - High intensity

Day 2 - High intensity

Day 3 - Low intensity

Day 4 - High intensity

Day 5 - High intensity

Day 6 - Low intensity

Day 7 - Full Recovery

Example: On your first high-intensity day, you do lower body training, as well as skills/game/team practice as the second session.

On the second high-intensity day, you do upper body & core training and also add skills/game/team practice as the second training session.

Then you have a low-intensity day, on which you can do the things listed above.

type-2

It works great when you have a lot of time (off-season) and for players who play a lot of back-to-back games.


Key Points

  • No professional shows up to work without knowing what he or she is going to do. Having a good & specific training schedule will help you train more effectively.
  • There should be no middle-intensity type of days because on these you don’t train hard but also don’t allow your body to recover properly.
  • At least one day a week, you should take a complete day off, where you don’t have to think about basketball and can refocus.
  • Communicate with your coach, so you can adjust your training schedule to make it work for you.

If you have any questions/suggestions or just want to talk hoops, you can always reach out to us!

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Until next time!