Mental Aspects of basketball

Essay by radakstUniversity, Bachelor'sA+, May 2007

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In working with one of my 8th grade basketball players I noticed that he was a very good player in practice but he couldn’t transfer any of his practice success to game situations. In order to be a successful basketball player you have to be able to perform under pressure and in front large crowds of people. Due to that fact that this player could perform successfully in practice but not in game situations led me to believe it had something to do with the mental aspect of playing in high pressure situations in front of large crowds of people. It was clear that it wasn’t a matter of problems with the fundamental skills of basketball since he was able to successfully perform the fundamentals in practice but he couldn’t transfer these to real game situations. I knew I had to teach this player to have confidence in himself and his skills, to not have fear of failure and to block out the crowd.

I have read a lot of books on mental toughness as this was always a problem I had throughout grade school and below are some tips for improving a basketball players self-confidence so they can perform as well in real games as they do in practice. In grade school I was on the basketball team and played very well in practice but got so nervous in games that I would tense up and make a lot of mistakes that I normally wouldn’t make. I believe that mental toughness is just as important as the physical skills. Believing that you are a good player and are going to be successful, mental rehearsal and preparation, and confidence in yourself are just as important to athletic success as practice and physical preparation. Below are some very important mental aspects...