It is one thing to be in shape, but it is entirely another thing to be in shape like a NBA player as they have to be prepared for all types of movements and be prepared to have muscular strength as well as cardiovascular strength. NBA players run for miles every game and having the muscles to endure the punishment they take from contact is a lot. Now, most of us reading this are not going to become NBA superstars, but today we are going to look at a typical NBA workout from former strength and conditioning coach of the Los Angeles Lakers Gunnar Peterson.
Having the overall strength that some NBA players display on a nightly basis feels like winning the genetic jackpot at the best online casino in the world. Now, let’s dive into the workout so we can be as strong as guys like LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and Joel Embiid.
Building Up Cardio
Building up cardio is essential for basketball players as they have to run up and down the court on a nightly basis and keep their energy and strength, even while they are fatigued. There are a bunch of different cardiovascular workouts that can be deployed but there are some that we learn at a young age like running suicides, taking a long bicycle ride, or swimming laps inside of a pool to build up your endurance as well as the strength needed to keep pushing your body.
Not all professional basketball players look like LeBron James with muscles everywhere to force and take contact. There are guys with similar builds to a Kevin Durant or a Chet Holmgren that can get by in a weight room but do not use that to establish their game. It is also critical to do some range of motion weight lifting since their bodies are going to be put in all types of different situations over the course of a game.
One typical workout are rollouts and all that is needed is a pair of dumbbells or an ab roller if you have one available. You are going to roll out the weight until you are completely flat in a planking position and then roll up to look like a mountain to improve your core.
Another workout that can be done are called rotational club chops that use your hips to essentially simulate hitting a baseball by driving them with a weighted force (typically cables) resisting you. It is important to rotate diagonally, have a good athletic base, and pull from the torso and hips to avoid injury.
It is not only important to work out inside of a gym, but to also work out on the basketball court itself as you are honing in workouts to improve your shooting, defense, etc. Making sure you have the strength in your lower body to apply a solid jump for your jump shot is important as well as having the range of motion to put your arms in a shooting motion 25+ times a game.
One example of this is simply dribbling the basketball. I know it sounds extremely simplistic but think about how many different muscles go into a single dribble of a ball. There are a lot of muscles at play all at once so that in of itself can be a way to make sure you have built up enough endurance for your body to dribble up and down the court as well.
Different trainers are going to have different approaches on how to have a NBA workout and so will the individual player as each person is different and has different goals and results. There are a multitude of different workouts and movements that can get the muscle memory going forward and making sure your body is prepared to succeed. What do you believe is the most important part of a workout for a NBA player?