Is Zone Defense Bad for Youth Basketball?

Today I watched a video that vilified zone defenses and presses in youth basketball. Now, I am a man-to-man coach and played in man-to-man defense only leagues when I was young. However, as long as zone defenses are legal, I do not see why youth leagues should prohibit them or why coaches should be discouraged Read more about Is Zone Defense Bad for Youth Basketball?[…]

The Purpose of Practice

Last week, I spent the week running basketball camps for a high school coach. We had sessions for high school players; 6th-8th graders; and 3rd-5th graders.

With each session, I had a different purpose. However, I managed the camp based on the players’ enthusiasm: if they appeared to enjoy something, we continued; if they did not, we stopped. […]

Is Basketball Practice Work or Fun?

When I talk to youth and high school basketball coaches, many seem to make practice intentionally not fun. To most, fun and work are opposites, and practice must be work to prepare for games and develop players’ skills. In Daniel Pink’s A Whole New Mind, he quotes British management scholar David Collinson about the work Read more about Is Basketball Practice Work or Fun?[…]

Basketball Coaches Solving the Marshmallow Problem

In this TED talk, Tom Wujec discusses the Marshmallow Problem: For coaches, I see two important lessons. First, The Ta-Da Problem. Many coaches use a similar process as the groups that perform poorly. They orient, plan and build, but when they put the marshmallow on top at the very end, everything falls apart. This happens Read more about Basketball Coaches Solving the Marshmallow Problem[…]

Things that Great Coaches Think

The big story in women’s basketball over the past couple days has been the culture of fear and intimidation created by Oregon State University women’s basketball coach LaVonda Wagner, who ultimately was fired. Perhaps Wagner could have learned a lesson from Stanford professor and management expert Bob Sutton, author of Weird Ideas that Work. In Read more about Things that Great Coaches Think[…]

Coaching Basketball and Innovation

USA Volleyball’s John Kessel’s article “We Coach the Way We Were Coached” questions the standard volleyball practice. As a Kessel fan, I used the thoughts last season when I coached volleyball, and some players and the Athletic Director/Girls’ Volleyball Coach acted as though I had no clue. After reading the article, I found Dan Pink’s blog Read more about Coaching Basketball and Innovation[…]