Top 10 Strength Exercises to Improve Your B Ball Game
Fundamental skills are important, but the best players put just as much emphasis on getting their bodies in top shape.
No matter how talented they are, every b ball player needs to incorporate strength exercises into their training. Even the pros hit the weight room consistently.
You can’t just do any workout, though — you should choose the ones that have proven to get your body in the perfect shape for rebounds, jump shots, and explosive movement on the court.
To help you out, we’ve rounded up the top 10 strength exercises to improve your b ball game.
1. Power Lunges
Every basketball player needs strong legs, so we’re kicking off this list with a full leg workout — power lunges.
You don’t need any weights for this exercise, just your body weight. Start off in lunge position, then jump and concentrate on landing back in a lunge. Alternate legs as you jump.
Speed is great for this exercise, but accuracy is more important. Be careful to keep the right form so that you don’t accidentally injure your knees.
2. Front Squats
The basic front squat is so important that it should already be part of your routine. This exercise is essential for building the leg muscles necessary to get airborne for rebounds and jump balls.
To get the most out of your squat, you should keep your weight on your heels and sink low enough to get your thighs parallel to the ground. If you’re using a heavier weight than usual, grab a spotter for safety.
3. Fingertip Pushups
Your legs aren’t the only focus you should have. To be as well-rounded as possible, the best b ball players work their upper body as well.
Fingertip pushups have the added bonus of strengthening those smaller muscles in your fingers. This might seem like too much attention to detail, but you’ll be happy you focused on that when you need to tip a ball away from an opponent.
Splay your fingers and keep your elbows close to your body during the pushup to complete this exercise.
4. Pull Ups
If you do them right, pull ups will strengthen your entire upper body. It will help to build the muscles in your back, shoulders, and arms especially.
Since your upper body strength is equally important as lower body, be sure you include pull ups in your routine. To make it even harder, tuck your legs close to your chest. This engages your core, which means you’ll hit your abs, shoulders, back and arms all in one exercise!
5. Kettlebell Deadlift
To strengthen the back of the lower half of your body, you should incorporate a kettlebell deadlift into your routine.
Use the form you usually would for a deadlift, but replace your heavy weights with kettlebells instead. Proper form is important here, since you don’t want to overuse the muscles in your back to extend upwards. Inhale as you go down, and exhale as you lift up.
This exercise targets four important muscle groups — your lower back, your glutes, your hamstrings, and your calves — to make sure every muscle is primed for quick, powerful movements. Try using a lower weight with high reps to tone and sculpt the muscles in your legs.
6. Goblet Squat
While you have the kettlebells out, try an exercise that will work on your quadriceps instead. Exercises like the goblet squat are perfect for b ball players trying to improve their verticals.
Hold the kettlebell under your chin with your elbows tucked in close to your torso before sinking into a low squat. The bonus of this exercise is that while it targets your quads, you’ll get a full leg workout with the goblet squat.
7. Kettlebell Rows
Let’s shift gears again and cover some other exercises that can strengthen and tone your upper body.
With a kettlebell in one hand, place one foot in front of the other, with a slightly bent knee on the opposite side of the hand with the kettlebell. Keep your back straight as you pull the kettlebell to your chest.
This exercise will work your arms, as well as a muscle group we haven’t targeted yet — your middle back.
You definitely need to be strategic with chin-ups to make sure you don’t accidentally do more harm than good. But when done correctly, chin-ups are another great exercise to build successful b ball players.
Chin-ups work your upper body, but they’re also a lot more successful than other exercises at strengthening your core, too. Less is more when it comes to this — keep it simple with a low rep count.
9. Close-Grip Bench Press
Similar to the basic front squat we mentioned above, the bench press is another fundamental exercise that you shouldn’t forget. It helps to build your pectoral muscles and strengthen your arms — essential for strong passes and three-point shots.
Modifying the grip to bring your hands closer together means that you’ll engage your triceps, too, and puts less stress on your shoulders.
To get this right, your hands should be no farther than shoulder width apart, and your elbows should stay as close to your body as possible. Make sure your lower back and butt are pressed against the bench at all times to avoid hurting your back as you lift.
10. One-Leg Squats
We’re closing out this list with one more leg exercise for good measure. To really up the difficulty, try a one-legged squat.
You can use a small box to give yourself some distance from the ground, which will allow you to get lower. Then hold one leg straight out in front of you and squat using the other leg. Balance carefully!
Don’t use weights for this exercise — just let your own body weight do the work.
Want More B Ball Training Exercises?
These are just a few of the strength exercises you can use to get yourself in the best shape for any basketball game. No matter what you choose to add to your training plan, make sure you vary your exercises so that you don’t overuse your muscles!
Don’t stop here, though — keep improving your knowledge of the game with our Training 101.