The MVP Shooting Method
The MVP Shooting Method is a simple system we created at Rising Stars Basketball that focuses on a shooting progression to prepare athletes for practice, games, or competitions. There is nothing ground breaking or earth shattering with the MVP Shooting Method, other than that it takes into account the ability to progress from one drill to the next based on your performance. As you progress through the drills, you increase your shooting range, shooting efficiency as the drills are timed, and you ultimately make more shots in a shorter period of time.
The last step in the methodology is a workout that is timed against the number of makes you are required to complete.
The best part, you can measure every single part of the shooting system to show your constant improvement over time.
Starting with Mechanics
The M in MVP stands for mechanics. We're placing a heavy emphasis on the shooting mechanics by employing the B.E.E.F. acronym. B.E.E.F. stands for
B - Balance in Athletic Position
E - Eyes on the Target
E - Elbow under the ball
F - Finish the shot.
Goal number one is to drill the mechanics and focus on teaching the athletes to use proper form and technique to start the shooting workout.
Benefits of Shooting the Basketball
The biggest benefits of shooting the basketball from the player's perspective. It doesn't require super speed or quickness. It doesn't require a 40-inch vertical. It doesn't require a crazy sick handle. It simple requires some time, energy and resources dedicated to putting in the work. Now, let's stop right there and put a definition to "putting in the work." Putting in the work implies that there is a plan to work on. There are thousands upon thousands of plans you can access online free of charge. The challenge you will find with these plans is that they don't cater to the individual needs of the athlete. Typically, a player development plan is based solely on the needs of the athlete.
The benefits of shooting the basketball are vast. According to college coaches, "there is always a spot on a team for a high level shooter" and in most high school teams, the "floor stretcher" is a pivotal part of a team's success. In high school the ability to shoot the ball is likely more pronounced in its effectiveness as most teams focus on getting the "best shot" which is usually a layup. A team that can hit 10+ three point shots per game is going to be a tough team to beat.
Teams will typically be forced out of their primary defense to ensure they're covering shooters that can hurt them from deep. If they're a typical 1-2-2 team that focuses on getting tips and forcing turnovers, a shooter can force that team into a man-to-man where they may be less effective.
A shooter that gets hot can likely change the landscape of a game when they're hitting key shots at key moments.
How to Become a Shooter
There are thousands of comments and theories about becoming a good shooter. I think history is the best indicator of what works. Let's look at a couple of elements that indicate how a shooter has become a shooter.
5 Characteristics of Good Shooters
5 Characteristics of Below-Average Shooters
You can really see where you are, if you're on the path to becoming a good shooter, you'll be following that simple recipe for success. if you're doing the below-average shooter activities, you'll likely not see much success in your ability to shoot the basketball.
Shooting Assessment Specifics
Let's look at some shooting specifics first.
I have three levels of shooting that I help athletes identify, so they know where to start on their player development journey.
Makes less than 40% or Less unguarded shots from 12 ft or more from the basket
This is a very simple thing to gauge. The players are to pick 5 spots, and shoot 10 shots from each spot. If they can use good form and proper mechanics to shoot from 12 feet, and make less than 50% - or - go less than 25 of 50, they're considered a beginner in the 10,000 Makes Challenge program.
If you can make 50%, then move back to 15 feet, this is about the distance of the free throw line. Have the athlete shoot 10 shots from the 5 spots at roughly 15 feet out. If the athlete makes less than 25 out of 50, then they're a beginner.
If they can make 50%, then move back to 19.9 or the 3-point line. Have the athlete shoot 10 shots from the 5 spots. If the athlete makes less than 25 out of 50, then they're a beginner.
This is a simple assessment anyone can do and if they're honest with their results, they should stick with the beginner program. The beginner program works exclusively on mechanics and shooting form from various distances until the form breaks. Once the form breaks, the athlete is to limit to just that range. Again, a very simple assessment that any athlete can do alone or with their parents. In my honest opinion, there is nothing more detrimental to a player's development than having them shoot 3s with poor form, mechanics and technique.
Makes less than 50% to 60% unguarded shots from 12 ft or more from the basket
The athlete can make 50% consistently from 12 feet. If the athlete is residing around 25 to 30 makes out of 50 attempts they would be considered an intermediate level shooter.
If the athlete can make 50% to 60% from the 12 feet range, then they move to the 15 feet range, and finally to the 3-point line. If the athlete can finish with 50% to 60% for their totals, they should work on the Intermediate Shooter plan.
Makes less than 70% to 100% unguarded shots from 12 ft or more from the basket
If the athlete can make 70% to 100% consistently from the three different ranges, then they would work on the Advanced Level Shooter plan. This plan focuses on the athlete getting to their spots, creating opportunities for themselves, and becoming a high level scorer through the 3-Level Scorer system.
Avoiding These Shooting Landmines
Basketball is a game that is open to interpretation. There are a lot of people out there that step into coaching because a spot is available, and there are a lot of people that step into coaching because they played at one point in time and then there is a smaller group of people that know, study, and practice the game they teach. These are the students of the game.
Shooting Above Your Head
I had just came across this one recently. One of the coaches were preaching, "Shoot above your head" so you don't get blocked. Now, two things come to mind for me.
1. If you're going to get blocked, wouldn't you be taking a shot whereas you're not open?
2. Is every athlete strong enough to shoot above their head - if not, then are you limiting shot selection to their range?
Follow Your Shot
You can hear this screamed about 20x at any youth basketball game or tournament. Parents in the stands are screaming to follow their shot. Here are a couple of facts that contradict the "follow your shot" crowd.
1. A follow-through is part of the shooting mechanic that is universally taught
2. If you're following your shot - aren't you planning to miss that said? If so, why shoot it?
Square Your Feet to the Basket
Now, there is new technology that has surfaced and new video of the greatest shooters that indicate that squaring your feet to the basket is not what the greatest shooters in the world are doing. In fact, they're turning the base of their body (their feet) away from the basket, so as to allow the shoulder and elbow the ability to align with the basket. One of the most important components of accurate shooting is to have a shot line and your ball to follow that shot line. If we follow that, the most efficient way to ensure the ball follows the shot line is to line up your toe, knee, elbow and basket on that shot line - then execute the shot to follow said shot line.
Dipping the Basketball
A lot of people are in favor of the dip as a way to generate force and power on the shot. However, here's what happens when you dip the basketball. You take all of this time to develop proper mechanics, and shooting motion with the least amount of resistance possible to keep your shot efficient. Let's be honest, when you're getting into those late game situations, you want the absolute most efficient motion as possible to minimize mistakes and/or misses. One way to combat this is by practicing your free throws when you're tired. Just about every coach on planet earth has the athletes shoot free throws after running some type of wind sprints or conditioning drill.
Conventional wisdom says, if you're tired, you use whatever force you have available to you at that moment to execute a movement. If you're practicing the dip without the need for a dip, you're creating additional motion, a longer kinetic chain for force generation and moving the elbow off of your shot line.
In short, dipping the basketball is nothing something we teach at Rising Stars Basketball. We teach the shooting shelf, and having the ability to shoot from that shelf.
Let's use the example of the Olympic weight lifters. They bring a barbell from the floor that weighs hundreds upon hundreds of pounds using the "Power Clean" movement. Once the power clean is executed, the barbell sits in the "Rack" position. From this position, they're able to generate enough force to move that barbell that contains world-record weights above and over their head with the most efficient form of movement possible. Why would you want to dip, when we can generate enough force from our "rack" or shooting shelf to execute the shot?
10,000 Shot Clubs
Now, I'm not bashing anyone or any club out there that hosts 10,000 Shot Clubs. We at Rising Stars Basketball created a 10,000 Makes Club because feel strongly that makes are far more important than attempts. When you focus on makes, the goal becomes to make the prescribed number of shots against the clock vs taking your time and getting up 200-300 shots. There is validity in both, but the true differentiator is going to be moving at game-speed using game-situation movements to accumulate the 10,000 Makes vs standing still and shooting 10,000 shots over the course of the summer. There are hundreds of thousands of athletes each year that put up 10,000 shots in a summer, there are very small numbers of athletes that follow a detailed plan to make 10,000 game-speed and game-situation shots over the summer.
Do you have a player development plan?
If you do not have one, our Rising Stars Basketball members get a free 10,000 Makes Challenge program, and are given 10-weeks to join the 10,000 Makes Club. If they make the prescribed shots in those 10-weeks they get a t-shirt, and plaque, as well as become part of an elite class of scorer.
The goal is to start the athletes young and get them into the thought process of making game-speed shots regularly and working on those game-speed shot that match the shot selections they'll receive within their team's system.
For more information on joining the 10,000 Makes Club - feel free to reach out to Club Director, Curtis DeCora; Player Development Coach, Hootie Hautamaki; or Youth Development Coordinator, Chandler Walowinski.
Rising Stars Basketball