Training in the Off-Season Vs. During The Season

by Patrick

in Training Tips

When I played basketball back in high school I used to train all the time. Everyday during the season my friends and I would hit the gym and do our vertical jump workouts to help improve our game. However, one thing we never really paid much attention to was overtraining. This eventually turned into a serious problem for us.

Since we were working out so much during the season our bodies were constantly being torn down in hopes that we could build back up and become stronger. Unfortunately, the exact opposite happened. By the time we got to our games we would be so tired and sore that we couldn’t even keep up with the teams we were playing against. As you can imagine, this resulted in a lot of losses and frustration. I constantly found myself saying, “How could we be losing if we were working so hard?”

As you probably guessed already, we were SERIOUSLY overtraining our bodies. The workouts that we did on our own were on top of our basketball practices which were already very intense. I always thought that the time to train for basketball was during basketball season since that’s when I’d be on the court most. However, I quickly learned that the offseason is one of the most important times of the year for your development as an athlete.

If you play basketball (or any sport really) you should focus on building your strength, speed and explosiveness before your sport begins. That way you’ll already be in prime shape when your actual season starts, and all you’ll have to do is maintain what you already have. Don’t just sit around and wait for your season to begin again. Take action and get in the gym or out on the track so you can prepare for the upcoming season.

So, if you’re going to follow a vertical jump program I would recommend doing it during the spring/summer season when you’ll have plenty of time to rest and recover. This will ensure that your body will be building athletic ability rather than breaking it down.

If you’re planning on working on your basketball skills such as dribbling, shooting, and passing you don’t really need to worry about when you do it. Practicing these skills is something that doesn’t require a ton of effort and you should be focusing on them year-round anyway.

Focus on things like muscle and speed building during the offseason so you don’t overtrain your body. Overtraining can lead to injuries, or as in my case, lots of fatigue, frustration and losses. Having an injury during your season can take a serious toll on your athletic career, and losing will knock down your self-esteem quite a bit.

So, to summarize what I’ve said just look at these equations

  • Offseason = Time to build strength, muscle, speed
  • In Season = Time to maintain what you’ve built during the offseason


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