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About NYer

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  1. I don't think you can learn how to shoot from reading a book. Is there a DVD available? I think the author teaches to shoot the way I learned to shoot, with a short stroke and shooting at the top of the jump, as opposed to Swish method's long stroke on the way up, so I'd be interested, but I doubt that a series of still pictures are all that effective for those who are not as familiar with the author's method as I think I am. If you are associated with that website, why not contact the owner of this site and consider placing an ad instead of just posting on a forum? I'm sure he would appreciate the income and might even be able to help with getting a DVD made.
  2. Two lines - one at the baseline, one at the elbow. The player on the baseline rolls the ball to the player at the elbow, then has to closeout and boxout. If the shot goes in, or the offensive player gets the rebound, he gets to go back on the shooting line. The defender has to get the ball if he ever wants to shoot. This drill is fun, competitive, and effective.
  3. When we have a kid with this habit, the first thing we try is to have him dribble with one hand behind his back. The next step is constant re-inforcement during practice - "OK, Johnny, you gave up your dribble, now you have to pass or shoot." Don't wait for him to make the mistake, give him direction right away so that it gets ingrained. Anticipate and pay attention. Remember to give positive re-inforcement every time he does the right thing, "That's the way, Johnny, good pass (or good shot)." If you have an assistant, have the assistant ride herd on him for a scrimmage or two, just standing next to him and giving him gentle reminders. The worst thing is to ignore it. Make sure he knows what a double dribble and carry mean, and what the penalty is. "OK, Johnny, that's a carry. Now the other team gets the ball." It sinks in after awhile. Be patient.
  4. First of all, who's the head coach here? You need to rein in your assistant, pronto. Second, there are plenty of guidelines for coaching kids at different ages. I stronly reccommend "The Double Goal Coach" by Jim Thompson, but almost any book on coaching youth sports will point out the errors of this coach's ways. These are 12U girls, not Marine recruits. Your job is to teach them how to play the game, and to help them have fun. Your job is not to verbally abuse them, nor to allow your assistant to do so. I would strongly urge you to have the Assistant Coach stick to teaching fundamentals and to leave the discipline and inspiration to you. It sounds like you are neglecting your responsibilities here.
  5. Who's the coach? You or your wife? Tell her the tight end position is the most presitigious position in football. It's certainly the easiest way to get into the NFL. How many good tight ends are there? I hope you got a pair of pants for Christmas. Just kidding. Wives can be typical sports parents, too.
  6. MCL injuries are typically not as bad or as hard to recover from as ACL injuries. Surgery is rarely performed unless other ligaments are also torn. See http://orthopedics.about.com/cs/kneeinjuri...mclinjury_2.htm for more information. Re-injury can be an issue. This injury is typically football related.
  7. The advantage of holding him back for sports purposes is minimal at this time. I assume your son was born in December. If so, in AAU basketball he will be able to compete with the younger age kids anyway, as he has a late birthday. Many other organizations go by year of birth instead of grade. The physical disadvantage will come into play when he is entering high school, or if your middle school has a team. The real question is how is he handling the social impact of being in the same grade as older kids? If he behaves himself in school and gets good grades and makes friends easily, then there is no real need to keep him back at this time. On the other hand, if he's misbehaving in school or has trouble making friends, then you might want to consider it. My friend's son was in a similar situation, and is now in the eighth grade, and considering which high school to attend next year. His birthdate is after Christmas, so he is the youngest player on basketball and baseball teams. He is tall for his age, so he is able to compete well against other 8th graders. He is still able to play with the seventh grade AAU team, but the CYO team uses birth dates anyway, so he has to play with the 8th graders. However, he has problems in class with behavior and grades. He has no trouble making friends, but they are the wrong ones, and instead of being a leader, he is a follower, particularly when it comes to talking in class and not paying attention. If this were my son, I would have held him back for a year, but I understand why his father chose not to do so. To me, these are more significant reasons for holding a child back in school than athletic considerations. Consider the whole issue. This can be a major trauma for a child, or no big deal, so consider how your son feels, too. Good luck.
  8. Plays without fundamentals are useless. 16-12 is a normal score for this age group if you are playing 6 minute quarters with the clock running. It might take 4th graders 25 to 30 practices to really understand an offense. If you have only one practice a week, that probably equals at least two years, LOL. You might be better off teaching the offense one step at a time. What is your goal with the entry pass? Can it be acheived just as easily with a dribble and position exchange? Then you've eliminated one potential turnover. Simplify the offense so that you are expecting no more than two passes to get a shot. Then teach them how to reset. Add complexity later in the year. Spend more of your practice time on passing and catching fundamentals. Teach them how to jump stop, pivot, jab step and crossover step so that they won't curl into a ball every time the defense nears them. Teach them how to come to the ball and not wait for it. Spend as much time as possible teaching how to make layups on the run against live defense. You'll find that a good pressure defense and fast break will be your best offense. By the way, there are no really good players at age 9, only some that are less terrible than others. Don't just take kids that are marginally better than the others, pick kids that follow directions and that are athletic and you'll have an easier time coaching plays.
  9. Kids this age can't grasp complicated plays. Concentrate on dribbling, catching the ball, stopping, standing still (very hard for 7-year-olds), passing (emphasize that they must pass to their teammates), moving after passing (they will like to watch their passes to the very end), and taking close range shots. Layups are very hard for kids this age, so you might want to teach them to stop and shoot (at first) until they figure out layups. Teach m2m defense, emphasizing that they must stay between their man and the basket. Don't worry too much about any other facet of defense, since this one concept may take all season to learn (they will all chase the ball or just stand there doing nothing at first). Teach them to value the ball, to treat it as if it was their Nintendo or PSP and the other team was trying to steal it. There are many Internet sites you can visit for more information, but one of the best sites for new coaches of young children is the NCAA kids site at http://www.ncaa.org/bbp/basketball_marketi...d/coaching.html They have files teaching you how to coach, how to do different skills and drills, and complete season long practice plans you can follow.
  10. The Swish method is fine, or the Steve Alford tapes, or the Pete Maravich tape. It doesn't matter, they all teach effective shooting methods. The key is consistency. Eight year olds are not strong enough to shoot with any kind of form from too far out anyway, and you can learn an effective jumpshot even much older, so don't worry about it. Use this time to make sure he can hit layups from either side of the basket, and that he looks to go to the hoop before settling for a jump shot. My 3rd-grade team only had one kid who could reach the basket until the middle of the season. It wasn't until 5th-grade that all players could reach the 10 foot basket from the free throw line. Start all shooting drills from one foot away. Do not let him shoot from any further out until he can hit at least 3 in a row. Pure form-shooting like this will help develop his muscle memory. As Coach7 says, practice on an 8 foot rim.
  11. Thanks Coach Ronn, that's most of what I was looking for, and not long at all. I let you know how it goes come October, and I'll probably have a hundred questions after that, but you've certainly given me food for thought.
  12. I've never been good at teaching plays, probably since I never played on a team that used plays. However, my 12U team's half court offense seems to degenerate into one player dribbling around until he gets into trouble and four players standing around watching. They have a simple continuity that they run occasionally, but it seldom is run correctly more than once. They like to run and seem to get bored with half court offense. Part of the problem is that I don't have a point guard who can penetrate and dish, but my team is what it is. How do you get kids to buy into an offense? These guys only want to scrimmage and do fundamentals in practice. I would like them to get used to moving, screening for each other, and passing the ball. I would love to see the team just pass the ball through 3 or 4 iterations of the continuity just to see what develops. A few ball reversals in a row would make my day. I'm not tied to any one offense. I have good shooters and two big guys, if that makes a difference. What I'm looking for is how you would teach an offense to a group of kids that are not that interested. How do you make it fun for them? Or do you just knuckle down and not worry about fun. All suggestions are welcome. Please be thorough - don't assume I know what you're talking about. If you're advocating a specific offense, please give tips on how to teach it to the kids. Thanks.
  13. Don't be obsessed with the team's results - be obsessed with improving each player. Two of the measures of a good youth coach is how many kids motivate themselves to be better and how many want to be able to make the tryout teams when they reach that age. With the first situation, your heart was in the right place, but it seems like you handled it incorrectly. The parent should have come to the game knowing that his son would not be starting. You might have a rule that says if you miss practice you will not be starting. The father might still storm off in a huff, but he would have no logical grounds to do so. Without the rule, when the player started missing practices in the beginining of the season you should have had a talk with the father and informed him then. My philosophy at this age is to rotate positions and starting, unless you're coaching a travel team or prepping for the World Series. No one should be pigeon-holed into a set position and everyone should have a chance at any position they show they can handle in practice. That's the key to making everyone satisfied. If they show they can handle a position in practice, let them know they'll get a chance to play at that position in a game. It seems to me your biggest problem is communicating, not coaching. Try to talk to the parents at practices and fill them in on their child's progress. Let everyone know what you plan to do at the next game. Don't spring surprises on the kids or the parents, it just leads to confusion and uncertainty. Remember that youth sports in general and baseball in particular have become a sore point for many parents because of their own misfortunes in the old days when they might have sat on the bench for an entire season. You might be their child's only coach - Make it fun for everyone.
  14. NYer


    There are hundreds of good books on coaching, but not knowing what level your firend will coach at it's hard to recommend any one book. One of my favorites is "My Personal Best" by John Wooden. This book is an easy reading autobiography that explains how Coach Wooden developed many of his philosophies while giving examples from events in his own life. This may be the kind of book that appeals more to experienced coaches who are looking more for "why" than "how-to". Another is "The Carolina Way" by Dean Smith. Although this attempts to be a self-help book that illustrates how basketball coaching principles can be used to improve your life, the combination of Coach Smith's memoirs with the anecdotes of former players give a great deal of insight into why North Carolina teams were so successful. For coaching How-to, the standard is Morgan Wooten's Coaching Basketball Successfully, which is almost a textbook on how to start, develop, and blossom a winning high school basketball program. For coaching youth basketball, the Baffled Parents' Guide to Coaching Youth Basketball and the companion volume Baffled Parents' Guide to Youth Basketball Drills are excellent sources for beginner youth basketball coaches. Finally, there are two general coaching books by Jim Thompson, Positive Coaching and The Double Goal Coach, that are good resources for anyone who wants to make a positive impact on youth through sports. You can find out more about these books and their philosophy at the Positive Coaching Alliance http://www.positivecoach.org/default.aspx
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