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Workout While Watching TV

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Many young players don't realize is that with a little creativity it's possible to get in a productive practice session in almost any circumstance. For example, here is a circuit work out that can be done while watching television: 

Place a sold, stationary chair in the middle of the room. (Preferably the chair should not have wheels of any kind or arms on it.) Begin the workout by placing both hands on the seat of the chair and doing 15 push-ups with perfect form. Immediately after the last push-up is completed, grab your basketball and sit on the front edge of the seat. 

Once you are in position, cross over the ball from hand to hand as quickly as possible between the back of your knees and the front of the chair. 25 repetitions is a good starting point but it's very important that you continue watching TV and not look down at the ball while doing this part of the drill. 

When finished with your crossovers put the ball down and prepare yourself to do 15 triceps dips on the chair. From a seated position on the chair, straighten out both legs and slide slightly forward. Your weight should now be supported on both hands which have remained anchored to the chair, while your butt and back are a few inches in front of the chair seat. 

Slowly lower yourself down as far as you can go and then return to the starting position by pushing down with both hands. You should immediately feel this in your triceps, which are the muscles in the back of your arms. (Stronger triceps helps increase shooting range!) 

The next drill requires that you sit back on the chair and this time you are going to execute "Figure 8's" around both legs while you are seated. Go as quickly as you can while keeping complete control of the ball and again it is important to keep your eyes on the television and off the ball while you are dribbling it. You can do these Figure 8's for a certain amount of time (30 seconds?) or for a set number of repetitions (10?) 

Now it's time to get a little ab work in and so for the next 30 seconds you need to do crunches, leg lifts, or planks while laying on the floor. (Each time go through this circuit use a different ab exercise. 

Grab your ball and sit back in the chair for the last drill in the circuit. This time dribble "around the world" by dribbling forward around both of your feet and proceeding all the way around the back of the chair and then continue in one continuous circle. This is harder than it seems as you won't be able to see the ball at all when going behind your back and chair. After finishing 10 trips around the world you will have completed one full circuit in about 3-5 minutes. 

Depending on your skill level you can get in between 6-10 circuits while watching a normal half hour TV show and completely eliminate the "I don't have time to practice" excuse! 

If you are looking for some variation or to improve even quicker, do the ball handling drills mentioned above using a tennis ball instead of a basketball. If you have a tendency to look down at the ball instead of at the TV, buy a pair of Dribble Specs and see immediate improvement. One last suggestion - if you need some extra cardio or want to work on your foot speed then try adding jumping rope to your TV circuit. 

Here's a recap of the drills in the circuit: 

1. Pushups
2. Behind the knee crossovers
3. Triceps Dips
4. Figure 8's
5. Ab work (crunches, planks, leg lifts)
6. Around the World (chair)
7. Jump Rope

This type of workout certainly doesn't replace time well spent in the gym but is just an idea of what can be done if you refuse to make excuses and are serious about improving your game. 

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