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Why Do NBA Players Workout Before Games?

Working out is an essential part of any sport. Basketball is not an exception and compared to other sports, a pre-game workout routine is considered pivotal before the game starts.

Why do NBA players work out before games? Players generally work out before every game to reduce tensions that accompany a particular match. Also, they are warming up to avoid injuries and make themselves fit prior to the beginning of a basketball game. 

Individual players have their individual routines before the game starts. In this article, we will have a look at possible reasons and how the workout looks in general.

Pre-Game Workout Differences

As we have already mentioned above, not every player’s routine is the same. For example, LeBron James has a specific workout routine, where he trains for 4-5 hours before the game starts. Giannis Antetokounmpo mostly follows the same routine and he pays a lot of attention to his physical shape. Some players are simply shooting the ball to “feel the game”. Generally, it is not advisable for any player to exhaust himself, because he will not be able to perform the same way in an actual game.

Main Reasons to Work Out Before Matches

There are a lot of reasons why the majority of players work out before basketball matches. Here are some of them which we can point out in the article.

Warming Up

The first and foremost reason is warming up. In every sport, it is a good idea to make basic moves that would help to adapt to the game quickly and efficiently. The same can be said about football, hockey. When players from the bench are entering the game, they are warming up. When a player is shooting the ball, he is already ready to enter the game with more preparation. 

Reduce the Tension

Basketball is not only about making shots and beating your opponent – it is also about reducing the tension and making yourself more agitated. Workout is an excellent way to alleviate all the pressure and direct more towards the actual game. Some players feel this is the best way to prepare effectively for the game.

Pre-Game Ritual

Some players do not even require to go through a particular training session before the game. They do it because of the routine and as a ritual. It is an omen for a good result. Of course it varies from a player to a player and basketball athletes look at this topic individually. LeBron James, which we have already mentioned above, is a notable example of pre-game rituals.

How Do NBA Players Work Out?

For professional NBA athletes, sports are not just a part of life, but a real job. And for many of them, it does not end with the match. The best NBA players go beyond a regular training plan and enjoy practising on their own. It is important to have a look at this topic as well.

LeBron James

During an independent workout, The King pays special attention to the muscles of the core. LeBron trains with special ropes. They allow you to work out different muscle groups well. Although fatigue quickly sets in during this workout, it helps to develop strength and endurance.

First, he performs alternating waves in a half-squat. The mini-workout ends with lifting the body with dumbbells. Once again, LeBron pays specific attention to the training process and it helped him to become one of the best players of all time.

James Harden

One of the favourite exercises of the Houston Rockets leader is push-ups. But not simple from the floor, but in a more complex variation. Harden uses special stops that allow you to change the load vector and perform exercises “deeper”. This equipment helps to diversify home workouts.

Kyle Kuzma

The Lakers player did not relax even during the coronavirus pandemic in 2020 and continued to train hard at home. He prefers to work with weights, making the usual exercises, which are suitable for beginners, more effective. One of them is a one-arm dumbbell bench press. This involves the trapezius, deltoid and gluteal muscles, as well as the quadriceps.

Kuzma also performs Bulgarian lunges or squats. The back leg is placed on a bench or other elevation, which allows you to focus the main load on the front leg and pay more attention to it. The basketball player does this exercise with dumbbells, but you can also use a barbell, and beginners will do without weighting at all.

Zion Williamson

The New Orleans Pelicans striker can boast of outstanding arms even for a basketball player – many will envy his biceps. Of course, regular exercise is essential to stay in shape.

Among other things, Williamson does not neglect dumbbell squats and classic reverse grip pull-ups. During the first exercise, in addition to the biceps, the load is also given to the quadriceps, gluteal, trapezius and deltoid muscles. And during pull-ups, the latissimus dorsi and the muscles of the forearms are also involved.

Luka Doncic

The Dallas Mavericks player also devotes time to training. He performs a “farmer’s walk” with a special double bar. The exercise uses the whole body and develops strength well. Instead of a barbell, you can use any weight: from ordinary dumbbells to especially heavy platforms for advanced crossfitters.

Another exercise from Doncic’s arsenal is a dumbbell row with an emphasis on an athletic bench. The main load falls on the broad muscle of the back, the large circular muscle, the posterior deltoid and the brachioradialis.