How To Prevent Shooting Slumps
Every good shooter goes through times when they can’t buy a basket. The question is – can a slump be prevented? The answer is, yes, and it’s all about recognizing the signs – – – while the ball is STILL going in.
CHANGE Is The Key To Predicting A Slump
Slumps don’t just happen out of the blue. They start gradually. When outside shots – NOT attempted on the move – that normally swish but now rim in off the left or right side, there’s a REASON. If the ball normally strikes the back of the rim before falling through and is now sliding in off the front, there is a REASON. The key is to pay attention to changes when they occur. Look for patterns. Make it a habit to watch where the ball falls within the basket. Be a perfectionist.
Tony Bennett – holder the NCAA Career 3-pt record of 49.7% and is now the head coach at the University of Virginia – made this comment, “Every time I made a shot, I was never completely satisfied unless it was a perfect swisher – dead center.”
So what happens when a problem is not addressed? It usually becomes a bigger problem and in shooting, that means a SLUMP. That’s why early detection is so important.
Correcting The Problem
Knowing the REASON for Left/Right changes and Distances changes gives an athlete a HUGE ADVANTAGE because they know where to look. That’s why we place such a big emphasis on teaching athletes how to be their own “shooting coach”. If you don’t understand the REASONS – the mechanics of shooting – your only alternative is to go into the gym and shoot and guess. In time – with emphasis on the word TIME – you will get your stroke back.
Left/Right changes generally indicate mechanics have slipped.
-Off-hand involvement is the first area to check. Attach The SHOOTING STRAP and see if that makes a difference. If that’s the problem, you will notice a difference almost immediately.
Vertical Alignment – having the Index finger, Elbow, Knee, and Toe on the shooting hand side remain in a Vertical plane during the entire shot.
– Flying elbow is the main cause. Concentrate on keeping the elbow “tucked in” while shooting. It will make a big difference right away if that’s the problem.
– The second area of vertical alignment to check is the ball moving back toward the middle of the body. Simply move the ball out but keep the elbow in as you shoot.
– Check the index and middle fingers. They should end in a vertical plane.
Distance changes mean the heel–toe weight distribution – balance – is no longer consistent and/or arc may have changed.
At three point range, put a piece of tape on the floor pointing toward the middle of the basket. With the shooting foot on the tape it should start and end on the tape although the foot may have traveled forward. Also, make sure the distance traveled is consistent. Do not fall away.
To check arc, simply finish each shot with the elbows above the eyes. They should always be within your peripheral vision. If not, your are arc is too high.