Basketball Conditioning For Everyone!

Whether you love the game of basketball, play a few pick up games every now and then, or have never touched a ball in your life, a basketball court can be an amazing tool for getting into tremendous shape. Basketball conditioning is undoubtedly some of the toughest drills you will ever do. You can combine sprinting with strength and plyometrics all in the same workout—and come out the other side lean and in great shape.

If you currently play ball some, this article will give you some drills that will help improve your game from a physical standpoint. If you don’t play at all, and just want to look great on the beach, then these drills will help you do that as well.

Conditioning for basketball truly does offer something for everyone.

Drill #1: Suicides

This is the staple of all basketball conditioning drills. The drill itself goes by many names, such as suicides, gassers, and court shuttles. 

At it’s essence, the drill is a very intense shuttle run, but one that requires you to get down and touch the lines on the court, making them even tougher.

To perform the drill, begin on one baseline (the line under the basket). Sprint to the near free throw line, drop down and touch it, and immediately sprint back to the baseline. Touch it, then sprint to half court, then back to baseline, then to the far free throw line, then back, then to the far baseline (full court sprint), then back. That’s one!

With each sprint to the next line, you are extending the distance, and you have to crouch down and touch the line before sprinting back. This drill forces you to change directions several times, sprint at an all out pace, and explode from a dead stop. It is no wonder that this classic drill is the mother of all basketball conditioning drills.

If you’ve never done them before, shoot for between 5-8. Work your way up until you can do 20 in a row, with only 60 seconds in between for rest. By then, you will be in incredible shape!

Drill #2: Backwards Sprinting

Developing the hamstrings without using weights can be a little tricky. It is surely not impossible, but if bodyweight training is your main program, then you have to get a little creative. One great way to develop the hamstrings, and elevate your heart rate through interval training is backward sprinting.

Just as the name sounds, you will be sprinting backwards. Start on one baseline, and turn your back to the opposite basket. Sprint backward, looking over one shoulder so you don’t take a spill. Go all the way to the far baseline, turn around, and sprint back. Since you are not doing quite as much as in the suicides, I suggest only resting 30 seconds in between each sprint.

Work up to 20 sprints in the same workout.

Drill #3: Carioca

The carioca drill is difficult to explain in words (and no, it isn’t pronounced karaoke!), so I have a video clip that will help you to understand. While this drill is very commonly seen on the football field, it is great for basketball and general conditioning as well. It forces you to move your body in a unified and cohesive way, builds coordination, elevates heart rate, and gets your core involved as well.

All in all, it’s a great drill. Perform it from one baseline to the other, and back again. Shoot for 20 or more in one workout.


Fast Tube by Casper

Drill # 4: Sprints And More

This drill is a bit of a medley that will have you sprinting, and performing strength exercises in between those sprints. Here is how it works.

Start at one baseline, then sprint to the other and back. Instead of resting, do 10 push ups. Repeat the sprint, down and back, then get under the basket, and jump up to touch the rim (or try) 10 times. Make sure you are jumping as high as you can each time.

That’s one. Rest for 60-90 seconds, and repeat. Shoot for 10-15 in one workout.

Get Basketball Conditioning Into Your Routine Today!

There you have it, four basketball inspired drills that will help you get leaner and fitter, or will help improve your game if you play. You can start by adding just one or two, mix and match, or go for broke and fit them all into your workout.

Whatever you choose, take advantage of the nice weather and try out some basketball conditioning drills today!

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