BASKETBALL SHOOTING COACH

THIS IS BRAIN TRAINING - TRAIN YOUR BRAIN TO SHOOT !!!
THE MOST INNOVATIVE AND CONTROVERSIAL APPROACH TO SHOOTING A BASKETBALL SINCE THE ONE-HANDED JUMP SHOT

- HOW TO TEACH SHOOTING -

EVERY PRACTICE:
Warm-Up: Dynamic Stretching - Peripheral Vision Training - Post Practice Static Stretching

LAY-UP DRILLS TO RUN ON 1ST PRACTICE AND WITH NEW PLAYERS:
No Dribbling.  1 Coach - 1 Player.  Explain we are teaching their brain to shoot. 
Coach watches player take 10 flat footed dominant hand layups [right hand, right side - left hand, left side]; no coaching, just observing.  Coach notices the natural spot on the backboard the player is hitting. (This is rare, but if player is hitting the backboard low in the box and the ball skips up before banking into the basket, redirect the players focus to somewhere around the upper corner of the box, and this player may need 20 more shots for you to evaluate that players natural spot.)
Use a laser pointer to show player his natural spot; call it his "natural spot, his target."  Tell the player that for the rest of his life to look at that spot before shooting a layup; that's now his layup target.  When shooting the player keeps eyes focused on imaginary spot until ball goes through hoop. 
ASK IF THE PLAYER UNDERSTANDS?  Yes means yes, no means further explanation is needed.

Remove pointer, ask player if he can see the spot where you pointed (you'll get a yes answer).  Now ask the player to change that spot to his/her favorite color so that whenever s/he looks up for a layup s/he sees a favorite color spot the size of the laser pointer.  Ask player to do that now.  Wait 5 seconds and ask again if s/he sees an imaginary favorite color spot the size of a laser pointer up on the backboard marking his/her natural layup target right now.  [The language is specific, please refrain from improvising:]  Have player look somewhere else in the gym, anywhere, we need to get his/her eyes off this new target.  Have player look back and 'locate' the new layup target.  Is his/her favorite colored target the size of the laser pointer still there?  99.9% of the time you'll get a confirmation that they see their new imaginary target.  If not, you simply go through the process again explaining it's no big deal, sometimes this happens. 
Now your player has a target to aim at when shooting layups. 


Have player shoot 20 one-handed layups.  Locate favorite color spot first and shoot at spot/target.  If s/he doesn't see a target there's no shot!!!  Player's eyes remain fixed on spot until ball goes through basket.  Have player shoot 20 'one handed,' (dominant hand) layups [left hand left side - right hand, right side], but before shooting the player must locate imaginary target.  
If s/he doesn't see a target there's no shot!!!  If the imaginary spot is not there, the player just waits until it appears, then shoots.  Player keeps eyes on imaginary spot until ball goes through hoop. 
After the fifth shot ask if s/he's really seeing that imaginary target?  'Yes,' and 'not all the time' are the normal answers.
"Remember to wait until you see the target before shooting.  Take your time, this is not a race, we are training your brain to shoot!  Keep your eyes on your imaginary spot until ball goes through hoop." 

This is not the time to keep track of makes and misses. The only mechanics you're to be concerned with is the player's hand under the ball (and spread out widely but relaxed). That's relatively easy, their hand needs to be perfectly under the ball in order to balance it one handed.  Shoot 20 more one handed dominant hand layups on both sides of the basket.  "Keep your eyes on your imaginary spot until ball goes through hoop;" then send player off to another basket to shoot Mikan Drills.  When shooting Mikan Drills players still need to see the same imaginary spot before shooting and keeping their eyes on their imaginary spot until the ball goes through the hoop.

LAY-UP DRILLS:  No Dribbling.  1 Coach - 1 Player.
Explain we are teaching their brain to shoot.  Player will shoot at least 50 'one handed' flat footed layups from each side of basket.  Right hand on right side, left hand on left side, coach helps with rebounds.  Player shoots from an exaggerated 'deep' triple threat type stance. Player is deep when the ball arrives, even if the ball comes right back to the player without an assist from the coach.  Player must be deep before catching the ball to shoot.  If player is not deep ball goes back to the coach for an entry assist pass (these should be bounce passes).  On the way up player locates his imaginary target and shoots when it's comfortable (no target - no shot).  Player keeps eyes on target until the ball goes through the hoop; that's the follow through, eyes on target until the ball goes through the hoop.  Players will need constant reminders to deep squat, if they catch the ball and then squat that's not what we want, we want them down as they receive the ball.  When they see the ball coming, they get down before the ball arrives (this is quick release training).  Players will need constant reminders to locate target before shooting.  Players may need constant reminders to keep eyes on target until the ball goes into the basket.  If players are scoring but missing their target, redirect them to their target with an explanation that it's cool that they can miss their target and still score - it's because of that the backboard is one of their best friends.  The only mechanics coaching is... being down to receive the ball and making certain their hand is under the middle of the ball with fingers spread out (these are still one-handed shots).  Expect everyone to hold the ball differently.  This is where under coaching speaks volumes.  Run though your entire team at least once, more is preferable.  Release players to Mikan Drills and Passing Drills.

MIKAN DRILLS:
Mikan Drills and Juggling make players basketball ambidextrous faster than anything.  Run this drill immediately after the Target Training Drill. 
Mikan Drills are one handed shots requiring players to get shooting hand directly under the ball.  These need to be hook shots, as opposed to push shots.  Player needs to locate target.  The EXACT same target as layups - both sides.  If players are using any form other than hook shots teach them to add these hook shots to their arsenal.  It's not that they've been doing it wrong, this just becomes an added shot.  Keep reminding players, because they get caught up in doing this drill quickly, there's no shot if there's no target on the backboard.  Pull back shot and don't shoot if they aren't seeing their target. 
We are not training mechanics, except to hook it.  We are training the brain to shoot by having a target.  We are teaching follow through by keeping eyes on imaginary spot until ball drops through the rim.  Once the brain has a target it will teach the body how to shoot all on it's own, and we as coaches get to watch the player's shot evolving over time... all on it's own.  A beautiful thing to witness.
This is a most difficult drill for players to run in a deep squat position, but if they drop down and retrieve it still down, when they go up for the shot it's a quicker release, a stronger move across and they get to the other side faster.  This IS the time to train that move.

JUGGLING:
One cannot overestimate the advantages juggling athletes have over non-jugglers!  To improve eye/hand coordination and peripheral vision simultaneously, there’s no more fun or thorough way than learning how to juggle.  To rapidly improve peripheral vision one of the finest exercise one can do is walking while juggling, especially through some type of obstacle course.  How about doing defensive drills while juggling?  Mastering the skill increases the amount of grey matter in areas of the brain that process and store visual information (court vision and target training).  Coaches need to learn how to juggle in order to teach and assist players in the process.  This is a real team bonding experience along with being the very best eye hand coordination exercise anywhere.  Improving eye-hand coordination will improve ALL basketball skills faster than anything else. 
While learning use balled up socks as juggling balls, when dropped they don't roll away. 

ADVANCED TARGET TRAINING:
No Dribbling.  1 Coach - 1 Player.  Player will shoot at least 25 'one handed' flat footed layups from each side of basket and with each hand over the front of the rim. 
Then standing three shoe sizes farther from the basket than the same spot as shooting over the front of the rim we want the players to change their target.

Their target is now a spot on the far side of the rim.  Use laser pointer to show them new target.  The rim is thicker close to the backboard.  The target is at the bottom of the thick part of the rim at 12 0'clock from player's position on the floor.

Explanation: We want players aiming at their imaginary spot on the far side of the rim.  If the rim was a clock laying on it's side we are talking about 12 o'clock - not the front of the rim, 6 o'clock, but the back of the rim, 12 o'clock.  They must look through the net to see that imaginary spot - it's not a problem.  If a player says they prefer to look at the front of the rim that's not acceptable.  Their target will forever be their imaginary spot on the far side of the rim, unless they're shooting a bank shot.  Down in a deep squat or low triple threat position they shoot one handed (dominant hand) at their imaginary spot on the far side of the rim.  The only mechanics coached is being low to receive the pass and spread palm under the ball.  Players will need constant reminders to deep squat, if they catch the ball and then squat that's not what we want, we want them down as they receive the ball.  When they see the ball coming they deep squat before the ball arrives (this is quick release training).  Players will need constant reminders to locate target before shooting.  Players may need constant reminders to keep eyes on target until the ball goes into the basket.  Shoot at least 50 and after 20 makes in a row move toward the free throw line one shoe sized step.
Shoot at least 50 and after 20 makes in a row move back one shoe size.  Continue this process until reaching 8 feet from the basket.  After shooting at least 50 from 8 feet out and making the last 20 in a row move back to the front of the rim and begin again.  As soon as 20 in a row are made move back one shoe size and continue this to 8 feet out.  If a player is having difficulty, simply stay close to the hoop for a longer period of time.  Do this a third time and when finished move in for 20 made one handed layups from each side but this time shoot right hand left side and left hand right side.  Run though your entire team at least once, more often is preferable.  Release players to Mikan Drills and Passing Drills.

This one handed shot players have been doing is their shot.  It's their free throw, jump shot, etc. (If a player changes this move to shoot 3 pointers then s/he's not strong enough to shoot 3s.  Don't make a player or even let him/her shoot 3s until strong enough.  It'll come, don't push it.  If you push it too soon you will destroy his natural form.) 
Now we have them bring the ball up with both hands and release the guide hand completely before shooting the ball.  So they are still shooting one handed, but they're able to get the ball up easier and faster while protecting it.  That's really the only reason to have two hands on the ball.  Everyone will release the ball differently.  No one release is better than another.  At this point it's too late to ask your player to change the muscle memory we just worked hard to burn in.  All we're doing now is adding ball protection while the ball is on the way up. 

No Dribbling.  1 Coach - 1 Player.
Explain we are teaching their brain to shoot. 
Player shoots 25 layups right hand right side, 25 layups left hand right side using light touch with guide hand and releasing guide hand before releasing ball, still actually shooting one handed.  Player shoots 25 one handed dominant hand layups over front of rim, then 25 dominant hand layups over front of rim using light touch with guide hand and releasing guide hand before releasing ball, still actually shooting one handed.  Player should be making close to 100% of all these layups.  Player gets 3 feet from rim and aims at imaginary spot on far side of the rim.  Player shoots until he makes 25 consecutive shots.  Then one shoe sized step back, player shoots until he makes 25 consecutive shots.  One step back, shoots until he makes 25 consecutive shots. 
One step back until reaching free throw distance, but DO NOT SHOOT FROM FREE THROW LINE.  If player misses two in a row, move up two steps.  Keep eyes on the favorite color imaginary spot until the ball goes through the basket.  Sometimes I tease the players; "Are you really seeing a [favorite color] spot?"  Player nods yes.  "You know the spot's not really there don't you?  If you tell someone you see spots on the basket they're gonna take you away!  Are you certain you see a spot?"  Have player shoot from an exaggerated 'deep' triple threat stance.  Hit the [favorite color] imaginary spot with the ball 25 times in a row.  Coach helps with rebounds.  Player is deep when the ball arrives, even if the ball comes right back to the player without an assist from the coach.  Player must be deep before catching the ball to shoot.  If player is not deep ball goes back to the coach for an entry assist bounce pass.  On the way up player locates imaginary target and shoots when it's comfortable.  No imaginary target no shot!  Player keeps eyes on target until the ball goes through the hoop; that's the follow through, eyes on target until the ball goes through the hoop.  Players will need constant reminders to deep squat, if they catch the ball and then squat that's not what we want.  We want them down as they receive the ball.  When they see the ball coming, they get down before the ball arrives (this is quick release training).  Players will need constant reminders to locate imaginary spot before shooting.  Players may need constant reminders to keep eyes on target until the ball goes into the basket.  The only mechanics coaching is being down to receive the ball, making certain their hand is under the middle of the ball with fingers spread out and light touch with the guide hand.  Expect everyone to hold the ball differently.  This is where under coaching speaks volumes.  Use light touch from guide hand and remove before shot and shoot one handed.  Move one step back after making 25 consecutive.  After reaching free throw line distance move back to basket, move one step to either side and go through the same procedure.  Move from basket to free throw distance five times from five different positions on floor.  Run through entire team at least once, more is preferable.  Release players to Mikan Drills (shoot Mikan Drills at favorite color targets, do not shoot unless target is favorite color) and Passing Drills (they can now put their favorite color on the wall target). 

No Dribbling.  1 Coach - 1 Player.  Repeat Previous Day. 
After repeating previous day player shoots any shot he wishes but no further out than free throw distance.  Coach helps with rebounds.  Player shoots from an exaggerated 'deep' triple threat stance.  Player is deep when the ball arrives, even if the ball comes right back to the player without an assist from the coach.  Player must be deep before catching the ball to shoot.  If player is not deep ball goes back to the coach for an entry assist bounce pass.  On the way up player locates his imaginary target and shoots when it's comfortable.  Favorite color target or no shot!  Player keeps eyes on target until the ball goes through the hoop; that's the follow through, eyes on target until the ball goes through the hoop.  Players will need constant reminders to deep squat, if they catch the ball and then squat that's not what we want, we want them down as they receive the ball.  When they see the ball coming, they get down before the ball arrives (this is quick release training).  Players will need constant reminders to locate imaginary spot before shooting.  Players may need constant reminders to keep eyes on target until the ball goes into the basket.   The only mechanics coaching is being down to receive the ball, making certain their hand is under the middle of the ball with fingers spread out and light touch with the guide hand.  This is where under coaching speaks volumes. Expect everyone to hold the ball differently.  In and around the paint players should use the backboard.  The layup target is the target for most bank shots within 8 feet of the basket and some shots much further away.  That's why Tim Duncan shoots so much off the glass.  He always uses the same target, and the backboard is more forgiving if the shot is a little off.  Remember, no target, no shot.  See imaginary target or no shot. 
Practicing at home on their own the same rules apply.  No shots further out than the free throw line.  For the next week or so don't let players shoot any further out than the free throw line.  Don't ever let players shoot 3s if they're not strong enough, not even goofing off.  The final shooting warm-up (above) is the shooting warm up every player should use forever; practice or games.  This warm up really ratchets up the shooting percentage. 

FREE THROWS
All players have a free throw shooting routine. We're gonna add to that routine. Before player goes into normal routine he must locate his imaginary spot, go through routine, and relocate imaginary spot.  When target is his favorite color he shoots.  I like players to make their imaginary spot brighter for free throws; just turn up the brightness.  Turn it up so bright s/he needs sunglasses.  Do you see what I'm saying?