Thursday, March 31, 2011

Spring Break Camp in Peachtree City

Posted by Chris Langley | Thursday, March 31, 2011 | Category: , , , | 0 comments

The Elite Hoops Spring Break Basketball Camp at Kedron Fieldhouse in Peachtree City, GA will run April 4-8, 2011 and will be directed by the Elite Hoops staff. This camp will focus in individual skill improvement with our offensive skills stations and 3 on 3 league. Each camper will also participate in our Individual Improvement contests each day to compete for prizes. All Elite Hoops basketball camps maintain a player to coach ratio of 8:1. This camp is limited to the first 24 players that register and is open to boys and girls ages 8-14 (currently in grades 4th-9th). The Camp fee is $195 per player. Kedron is a convenient location for anyone in Fayette County, Peachtree City, Fayetteville or Tyrone. Camp times are Monday-Friday 9am-12pm. Lunch will not be provided, so please bring a drink and snack for breaks.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

3-Step Training Approach

Posted by Lee Miller | Thursday, March 24, 2011 | Category: , , | 0 comments

We train middle school, high school and collegiate players 10 months out of the year.  However, we train players differently in each of the three basketball seasons: In-Season, Pre-Season,  and Post-Season.  Most players tend to train the same way all year long.  Is that wrong? No. Anytime a player commits to training they are going to get better, but we think there is a systematic approach to improving your game different ways throughout the year.

In-Season (November-February), we perform "Maintenance" workouts where we focus on getting lots of individual repetitions for our trainees.   Most teams and coaches are working on team development in these months-ie, installing a new offense, out of bounds plays, full court presses, etc. and most players on the middle school and high school level do not get the quantity of individual reps needed.  I'm sure you've heard it before, but "teams are made October through March and players are made March to October." That is why during the season we don't "make" players, just maintain them.

Once the regular season is complete we move our workouts to "Growth" sessions (March-May). During this time of year, we really look to expand each players game both offensively and defensively.  On the offensive end, we strive to add 2-3 moves to each players arsenal (see two of our moves to the right), work on their first step quickness, elevate their shooting percentage/range and also improve their ballhandling speed. On the defensive end, we look to improve their first step cutoff, lateral quickness and body positioning.

During the pre-season (August-October), our workouts are "Performance" based sessions.  These sessions are a combination of of Maintenance and Growth sessions, but with the addition of statistically tracking players shooting percentages, ball speed, repetitions, quickness, etc.  This allows players to truly see progress in their game as they prepare for the season to begin.

Lee Miller
Elite Hoops
"Release Your Potential"

Big East vs. ACC

Posted by Tysor Driesell Anderson | | Category: , , | 0 comments

Every year we seem to have the debate over which conference is the best in college basketball. This year the consensus has been that the Big East was the best conference in the country. Its a trap that is easy to fall into: mistaking the biggest conference for the best conference. With 16 teams the Big East is more like an association than a conference. It is a good league with some big name coaches and schools in some big market cities: New York, Philadelphia, Chicago. But the Big East lacks one major variable that a league must have to be the best....the best players.

I grew up in a basketball family with a legendary college coach for a granddad and he always says, "It don't matter how good a coach you are, you ain't going to win any games if you ain't got great players." Well the Big East hasn't won many games so far in this years NCAA tournament and that's in large part because they haven't got great players. As a former ACC player I know where the best players in the country are and that's in the ACC. I was not one of those players that makes the ACC great but I had to see them every night for 4 years and it is a different brand of basketball than anywhere else in the country.

The Big East set a record this year with 11 teams recieving bids to the NCAA tournament. The ACC got 4 bids while 2 teams, Virginia Tech and Boston College, sat anxiously on the bubble only to find out they were playing in the NIT. After 68 has been whittled down to 16, the Big East has 2 teams remaining from their original 11 (Connecticut and Marquette) and both of those teams beat other Big East teams to advance to the Sweet 16. The ACC has a 7-1 record so far in the tournament and has 3 remaining teams from their original 4 (Duke, UNC, Florida State). Now I realize that March is a crazy time and if the ball bounces a different way or the whistle blows at a different time then things could have been a bit different but the atroscious opening weekend for the Big East was capped off with a dominating performance by a beat up, middle of the ACC pack Florida State team over a premier Big East team, Notre Dame. The FSU vs. Notre Dame game embodied some major differences in the 2 conferences. FSU physically dominated the Irish from start to finish. They were swarming on defense, quicker on offense, and brutally pounded Notre Dame holding them to nearly 20 points below their season average.

Playing in the ACC I can tell you we were never once physically intimidated by a school outside our conference. That includes playing teams like Kansas, Connecticut, Ohio State, Memphis, Indiana, USC, Oklahoma State, UNLV etc. We weren't physically intimidated because we played against teams every night, in the ACC, that had better athletes, stronger defenders, and played a more physical style of basketball.

The evidence that the ACC is the best conference in America lies in 2 telling factors: the style of play teams build reputations for playing.....and NBA players.

The ACC is known for having physical defensive teams. Duke, North Carolina, Florida State, Clemson, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Wake Forrest are all teams with defensive reputations. The Big East has 3 maybe 4 teams with that reputation (Louisville, Pitt, Cincinnati, and Villanova as the maybe). But neither of those teams has the calibar of athletes that the ACC has. Just look at the players in the NBA.

There are more ACC players in the NBA (56) than any other conference. I won't take the time to name them but go ahead and check out some NBA rosters and see where guys played in college. You'll see where the best league in the world gets most of their talent. As we know, "You ain't going to win without great players," and the ACC has those players.

Ty Anderson
Elite Hoops Basketball
"Release Your Potential"

Monday, March 14, 2011

Evaluate and Plan

Posted by Lee Miller | Monday, March 14, 2011 | Category: , , | 0 comments

My previous blog covered the initial steps of the off-season: RestRecover, and Reflect.

The next two steps are Evaluate and Plan.

After ample rest, players need to formally evaluate their strengths and weaknesses. This step is vital to success; yet rarely done.

Players need to clearly establish what they do well and what needs improvement.  This can only be done effectively by a comprehensiveevaluation by both player and coach.

Rate the following 15 traits:

1.    Ball handling (weak hand? variety of moves? maintain court vision?)
2.    Shooting (form? off the pass? off the dribble? range? FT’s?)
3.    Passing (understand angles? feed post? pass on the move?)
4.    Rebounding (box out consistently? go to the ball?)
5.    Defending (on ball? in post? through screens? team concepts? contest shots? don’t foul?)
6.    Strength & Power (finish with contact? knocked off ball screens? dunk?)
7.    Quickness & Reaction (explosive first step? first to the ball?)
8.    Agility & Movement Efficiency (effectively accelerate, decelerate & change directions?)
9.    Flexibility & Mobility (stiff hamstrings? low back? tight ankles?)
10.  Body Composition (need more muscle? have excess body fat?)
11.  Conditioning (great basketball shape? as effective in the 4th quarter as in the 1st?)
12. Basketball I.Q. (know how to play? quality decision making?)
13. Leadership (do teammates listen? do they follow? ‘Play Present’?)
14. Teammate (know & accept role on team? care about teammates?)
15. Work Ethic (1st in the gym, last to leave? give 100% all of the time?)
Rate each trait on a scale of 1 to 10. Players should write down what they believe; not what their parents or girlfriend thinks or what a scouting service says. Then players should have their coach rate each trait too. 

How do the results compare?  Any score that the player and coach agree on is probably accurate.  If they both believe ball handling is an “8”, then it probably is.  But what if the player thinks it is an “8” and the coach believes it is a “5”?  Is it possible the player thinks an aspect of their game is better than it actually is? Regardless, average out both scores and have a final rating for each trait.  Then list them in descending order: highest scores (strengths) are at the top and lowest scores (weaknesses) are at the bottom.  This ranking will help players prioritize what to work on this off-season (the theme of my next blog).

Once player and coach have filled out the evaluation, averaged the scores, and ranked the traits in descending order… it is time to plot the framework of an off-season training plan.

Before planning the off-season, let’s define it by dividing the year into 3 distinct phases:

Off-season: beginning the day after the last game and ending 8 weeks before the first practice.

Pre-season: beginning 8 weeks before the first practice and ending the day of the first practice.

In-season: beginning the day of the first practice and ending the day of the last game.

Players need to plan their spring and summer schedule and take a look at everything that will necessitate their time. Spring sport? Tutor? AAU? Vacations?  The more they know in advance, the better they can plan a viable schedule.

The initial goal of the off-season is to improve strength and power.  There is no such thing as being too strong!  When players ask me why strength is so important, I say:

“What do you want to be; the bug or the windshield?”

Quickness, agility and conditioning are important, but for the first part of the off-season, players need to focus on increasing their overall strength, address structural imbalances, and develop proper movement patterns. This is the foundation of the entire off-season program.

If you need a quality program to follow, this is an invaluable resource:

My next post will cover the third phase of the off-season: Execute. I will discuss how to prioritize strengths and weaknesses.  My thoughts may surprise you!

As always, feel free to email me directly if I can be of any assistance.

Work hard. Work smart.

Alan Stein

PS: A similar evaluation can also be done by coaches.  After all, the off-season isn’t just about players getting better… coaches need to constantly develop too! Possible traits for coach’s evaluation:
·         Practice plans
·         Game strategies & adjustments
·         Scouting reports
·         Pre-game routine
·         Motivational techniques
·         Teaching concepts
·         Relationships with players
·         Overall attitude
·         Leadership style

Monday, March 7, 2011

Rest, Recover and Reflect

Posted by Lee Miller | Monday, March 7, 2011 | Category: , , , | 0 comments

We pulled out a thrilling 3 point win last night over Gonzaga High School to capture the 2011 WCAC Championship.  It felt amazing to see our kids so happy.  We have a tremendous group of young men and they deserve to call themselves CHAMPIONS.

But our season isn’t done yet.  Winning the conference tournament earned us a ticket to play Theodore Roosevelt High School in the DC City Title Game on Monday, March 7th at the Verizon Center. 

Even though we are still playing, I realize many teams across the country have completed their seasons.

This blog is the first in a 3-week series of posts to help you plan your off-season strength & conditioning program.

Most youth and high school basketball players no longer have a true off-season as they immediately jump into AAU and then into the summer camp circuit.  While I am not an advocate of this schedule, I realize “you can’t stop the waves; but you can learn to surf!”

Given that basketball is now a year round sport, having a sound approach to training is essential:

1.    By making the muscles, tendons, ligaments, and joint structures stronger and more mobile, players will lessen the occurrence and severity of acute and overuse injuries.  If an injury does occur, they will recover quicker. 

2.    By improving strength, power, footwork, reaction, agility, coordination, flexibility and conditioning, players will be able to perform their basketball skills more efficiently, perform them at a higher level, and perform them for longer before the onset of fatigue.

3.    Players who train hard are more confident on the court. That is why ‘The Best Players are in the Best Shape!”
Players need to take one to two full weeks off after their last game.  This is non-negotiable. They need to rest their minds and their bodies.  They need to spend quality time with family and friends.  They need to make sure their academics are on point.  They need to get extra sleep.  They need to eat well. They need to kick back and enjoy being a kid! High school & college will be over in the blink of an eye; they shouldn’t take this time for granted.  They need to enjoy the journey.

Players need to address the nagging injuries they endured during the season.  They shouldn’t ignore sore ankles, sore knees, and sore backs. If appropriate doses of Advil and ice don’t do the trick, they need to see a medical professional (an Athletic Trainer or Physical Therapist).

The only physical activity I would recommend during the recovery phase would be a daily full body foam roll routine (‘self-massage’) and/or some active stretching and mobility type movements like these:

If you need further guidance for the rest and recovery phase, this is an excellent resource:

Players need to take 10 minutes every day during this two week period and sit comfortably in total silence – no phones, no computers, nomusic, no TV, and no barking dogs.  They need to close their eyes and reminisce on this past season. If it was a successful season, they should take time to feel good about what they accomplished and pin-point what made it such an impressive year.

If it was a rough season, they need to use it as a learning experience to get better. They need to reflect on the challenges they faced and brainstorm ways to handle those issues in the future. Remember, from every adversity comes opportunity.  

My next post will cover the second phase of the off-season: Evaluate and Plan.

My main goal is to be a resource for as many basketball players and coaches as I can. Please email me if I can ever be of service (

Train hard. Train smart.

Alan Stein