It's Saturday afternoon and you're pumped to go to the gym and work on your jumpshot...
You get to the gym. You're alone and getting every rebound, expending a lot of energy. With every rebound you get frustrated and think it would be so much easier and efficient if you just had someone to get your rebounds for you...
A lot of my players deal with this frustration. I did too...
When I started working on my shot, I would go to my local rec centre early in the morning and find an empty rim to start practicing. Everyday, without fail, someone would come into the gym without a ball and ask me if I wanted a rebounder (so that in turn, I would rebound for them).
Eventually I started always saying no. Here's why...
Here's a question from a player who is worried that he is not reaching his shooting potential because he doesn’t have a shooting partner/rebounder:
"I have been playing basketball for a few years and I have always had a lot of issues with my shot. After watching your videos, I started seriously working on my shooting form about 3 weeks ago.
I have already improved a lot but my only worry is that I don’t have anyone to go to the gym with so I feel like I’m wasting a lot of time in between shots because I have to get my own rebound.
How important do you think it is to have a rebounder when practicing?"
I know this is probably not what you were expecting but I actually think you are better off without a rebounder when working on your shooting form.
At least at first.
It seems like an efficient system; you rebound for one another and both people end up getting more shots up. This is true. But quantity is not the goal when you are trying to change a movement pattern and improve your mechanics.
We need to be interested in the quality of each rep, especially when starting out. Improving your technique takes deliberate, focused, and conscious practice. Every rep needs your full attention.
The problem I found with having a rebounder during these early stages is that it speeds you up. It doesn’t allow you to take your time and think about what you’re doing. It doesn’t give you a chance to experiment or make corrections.
When someone is waiting for you to shoot, your mind will shift away from technique and you will start to speed up. You will probably feel uncomfortable to stop and reflect on why your shot felt good or bad - which is exactly what you should be doing.
If someone is waiting for you, you won’t pull out your camera to record one rep at a time so that you can analyze what you are doing right and what needs improvement. When someone is watching you shoot, your mind will shift away from technique and you will start worrying about how many shots you make.
On the other hand, if you’re training alone, you have the freedom to train your technique the right way - to slow down and focus on the important things. That’s why I think being alone in the gym and focusing all of your mental energy on each shot is what will actually allow you to see real progress.
Then, once the correct techniques have become second nature for you, the time will come when having a rebounder will make your workouts a lot more efficient. But at first, I think a rebounder can often do more harm than good so don’t worry too much about that for now.
Of course, if you do end up training with someone, as long as you find that having a rebounder or partner doesn’t affect your ability to focus on technique, go for it.
There is also a deeper issue here for a player who thinks they don't have a partner or rebounder to get more shots up quickly...
Most of the time, they're thinking that the more shots they put up, the better their shot will get. That's not how it works - that's how the average player thinks...
The one that has been training his shot for years but still changes his form constantly, lacks confidence on the court, and doesn't have a consistent shot.
Remember: more shots doesn't equal better shot.
You have to train using specific methods to analyze, to adjust, to practice, to implant, and finally to enhance your shot. That's how all elite level shooters train.
All those steps are necessary and if you want a complete step-by-step system that shows you how to train in that way in those steps, you can get that training by clicking here.
Once you get your perfect jumpshot down using those methods, you'll finally develop that deadly consistency that will make you an actual threat on the court, and enable you to be the best player you can be.