Lower Quarter Injury Prevention and Sports Performance for the In-Season Basketball Player

by Sam Kushner, PT, DPT

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Let’s get right into understanding 3 key differences between off-season training vs. in-season training.

Training Frequency

  • Off-season: 3-6x/week
  • In-season: 2x/week (or 3 if less experienced with resistance training)
    • to provide complemental mechanical stress to tissues while not overloading then in congruence with sport-specific training (practices, games, etc.).
    • Lower frequency is also more realistic for consistency purposes as well. Consistency is key in any training program in order to see results!

Training Focus

  • Off-season: long duration, high volume, high intensity
    • In other words, long training sessions, with a large variety of exercise variations at high weight/effort
  • In-season: short duration, lower volume, still high intensity
    • In other words, continuing relatively heavy weight/high effort to maintain off-season gains, but fewer exercise variations performed throughout a shorter training session.
    • These parameters will allow for more consistency, while avoiding excessive soreness or fatigue during practices and games that may affect sport performance.

Type of Exercise

  • Off-season: a large exercise menu with more of an emphasis on building muscle size, strength, power and overall conditioning.
  • In-season: similarly to concepts from above, we want to combine a small group of exercise variations that promote injury prevention and performance optimization.
    • Ideally, we want our exercise selection to be specific to sport demands, positional demands, and individualization to the athlete.

Exercise Examples

The exercises below are a great place to start to enhance basketball-specific performance and injury prevention!

3-Way Jab

Lateral Lunge w/ Forward Press

Broad Jump Squat Jump w/ Stick

Lateral Bound w/ Stick

If you’re already experiencing lower quarter (hip, knee, ankle) pain at this time, please refrain from performing these exercises and give us a call to set up a formal evaluation with a licensed physical therapist!

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