The Real Athlete Blog


Category: Coaching

  1. Game Preparation

    by Alan Stein 12-14-2010 10:22 PM Coaching | Sports Psychology

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    Dictionary.com provided this definition of the word "prepare":

    [pri-pair] – Verb  

    To put in proper condition or readiness.

    How do you prepare for games? 
    1)    Do you get 7-8 hours of sound sleep the night before a game?
    2)    Do you review your playbook or read your opponent’s scouting report before you go to sleep?
    3)    Do you eat a healthy, energy packed breakfast the morning of the game?
    4)    Do you pack your uniform, shoes, etc. in advance to avoid scrambling at the last minute?
    5)    Do you “dress for success” on game day to put yourself in a confident state of mind?


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  2. Know Your Role

    by Alan Stein 12-09-2010 10:07 PM Athlete Career Development | Coaching

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    Does every player in your program know what their role is? Are you sure?

    A major factor in your team’s success is getting every player to:
    • Know their role
    • Accept their role
    • Have pride in their role
    Coach Jones takes a unique approach. Prior to our first game, he conducts a 15 minute meeting with every player and their parents. He offers his thoughts on their first 3 weeks of practice, he clearly defines their role on the team, he estimates how much playing time they will get, and he outlines his expectations. 


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  3. Banged Up

    by Alan Stein 12-06-2010 11:53 PM Training | Coaching | Injury & Rehabilitation

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    With two full weeks of practice under our belts, we (DeMatha) are off to a great start. Our players are starting to jell into a cohesive unit. We are still miles away from where we need to be, but we are moving in the right direction. We have several scrimmages lined up, to help us fine tune things, prior to our season opener on December 1st. Our players are looking forward to competing against someone other than themselves!

    Despite the great start, we are physically banged up right now. Our guys compete so hard in practice… there is no shortage of bumps, bruises, and sore muscles. Regardless of how thorough our pre-season strength & conditioning program was… the intensity, volume, and contact has been turned up ten-fold since practice began. It’s normal for players to be a bit banged up in the first few weeks. Their bodies (and minds) are getting acclimated to the rigors of full contact practices. It doesn’t mean our pre-season training was deficient (believe me, it wasn’t). This is just another step up the “intensity ladder.” Our guys were sore the first couple of weeks of our pre-season training… but they adjusted. The same will happen now that practice has begun.
    As Clarke W. Griswold said in Christmas Vacation, “it’s all a part of the experience!”


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  4. The Passing of a Legend: Mack Lewis

    by Matthew Allinson 12-02-2010 11:48 PM Athlete Career Development | Coaching | Human Relations | News

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    From the Editor's Father, Arthur Allinson.

    It would be right with the many other testimonials bestowed on the beloved and greatly respected Mack Lewis that I comment on the legendary boxing trainer and manager's recent passing. Mr. Lewis, who died at the age of 92 on November 12, spent his lifetime mentoring and tutoring at-risk youth in East Baltimore at The Mack Lewis Gym. He guided them successfully in their teenage years and through adulthood as they encountered the many temptations and challenges presented by inner-city life. Through boxing, he offered an alternative life that brought success to hundreds of deserving young men. Mr. Mack would often say "I don't care if you become a world champion, as long as you become a productive member of society."


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  5. World Champs and Questions

    by Steven Yellin 12-01-2010 01:36 AM Training | Coaching

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    Every year after the playoffs and World Series, two things happen: 

    • A team is crowned world champion.
    • One or more stars are asked why they had such a lousy post-season. 

    This year was no different. 

    It was refreshing to see a team not usually in the mix win it all. Hats off to the Giants. They played great and deserved the crown. 


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  6. Youth Training

    by Alan Stein 11-27-2010 04:47 PM Training | Athlete Career Development | Coaching

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    Will lifting weights stunt your growth? At what age should you start lifting weights?

    Let me put an end to this lingering myth once and for all…
    Proper strength training does not stunt growth! In fact, you can actually begin a safe, age appropriate training program as young as 8 or 9 years old.
    For all of the 13 and 14 year olds who email me or hit me up on Twitter or Facebook asking when they should start strength training… my answer is… today!


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  7. Be Assertive

    by Alan Stein 11-02-2010 11:45 PM Coaching

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    In addition to horrible officiating, there is something else that all coaches can’t stand… turnovers. Turning the ball over in basketball is a cardinal sin. After all, winning the turnover battle is usually the key to victory.

    But is there such a thing as a good turnover? I wouldn’t go that far… but all turnovers are not equal. There is difference between trying to pivot through a trap to pass to an open teammate and getting called for traveling and making a casual perimeter pass that gets stolen. There is a difference between attacking the rim and being called for an offensive foul and tossing an ill-advised behind the back pass out of bounds during a simple 2-on-1 fast break.

    What’s the difference? One was an assertive play and the other wasn’t.  You have to learn to live with assertive turnovers.


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  8. What The Greats Do

    by Alan Stein 11-01-2010 12:35 AM Training | Athlete Career Development | Coaching

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    As I have mentioned numerous times, the game of basketball has afforded me the opportunity to meet some amazing people, travel to some amazing places, and have some amazing experiences. All of which I am thankful for.

    One of those remarkable people is shooting coach Dave Hopla. Coach Hopla has worked in the NBA for several years (Toronto Raptors and Washington Wizards). My right hand man Blair O’Donovan has worked with him the past 5 years in China at the Nike All-Asia Camp and they have become great friends.


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  9. What Separates You?

    by Alan Stein 10-17-2010 07:04 PM Training | Coaching

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    With the start of the high school season approaching fast, it is time for you to ask yourself a significant question…

    What separates you?

    What is it about your game that separates you from every other player?
    Are you as massive as Dwight Howard?
    Are you as explosive as LeBron James?
    Are you as skilled as Kevin Durant?


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  10. Advice From a Legend

    by Alan Stein 10-17-2010 06:26 PM Athlete Career Development | Coaching | Sports Psychology

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    Jerry West is a living legend.
    Yeah, he is in the NBA Hall of Fame.
    Sure, he was voted one of the 50 greatest players of all time.
    For crying out loud… Jerry West is the NBA logo! 
    When he speaks, you need to listen.
    Jerry West is friends with the father of a basketball player at Gonzaga High School in Washington, DC.  A couple of weeks ago he stopped in to address the team after a pre-season workout. He spoke from the heart and gave sound advice: 


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