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Friday, June 4, 2010

How Kobe Bryant Does it!

Have to be careful here. Most of you who don't know better will assume this is another praise-crazy article about arguably the best basketball player in the game. Well I do have a lot of good things to say about Kobe, but let's focus on one aspect that many are learning throughout basketball and in the sports landscape in general: Kobe Bryant is one of the physically, brutally strongest athletes in the NBA!

The scene is familiar. Kobe brings the ball down or gets it via a quick pop-pass from Derek Fisher on the wing near half-court. In that Triangle offense he dribbles at a 45% angle to the basket towards the top of the key steps right into the paint where he usually draws a double team. Steps back jumps into the air usually drawing contact from another strong professional athlete. Is somehow able to square his body up to the basket in the air to shoot over hands in his face and 'swish' another through and frustrate the opposition's otherwise good defensive efforts.

This is outside of raw talent, and ability folks. Kobe has to work on his strength immensely to be able to consistently shoot over, under, around, and right into defenders.

As it turns out Kobe is a real 'Meat-Head' (Once again that is the utmost in compliments in Gym lore in describing a professional athlete) this means that he has to take his weight training 'deadly serious' particularly in the off season. In a recent interview with Muscle and Fitness magazine Kobe summed it up in a way that should be a lesson to all of you Hoops Hotshots out there: MF: So specifically though, in the off-season, what kind of weight lifting are you doing? Is it explosive movements, like plyometrics?

Kobe: Not really, it's all Olympic lifts. I do a lot of track work.

MF: So like snatches, things like that?

Kobe: Yeah, clean-pulls, deadlifts, Romanian deadlifts, back squats, things of that nature.

Well what do you know? The best basketball player of our time (whose team is up 1-0 in the championship series at the writing of this blog) has to work at it? And includes actually stepping in the weight room? Have you noticed as well that even though Kobe has been injured in his career that he seems to be able to bounce back rather quickly? Ya think his off season training has anything to do with that?

So hoopsters unlike your football brothers and sisters you have close to 6 months to get ready to play. Be ready! Hit the gym hard now! You could help your team hoist a championship trophy in March.

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