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 Dedication by Alan Stein

 My goal has always been to create an extraordinary environment for basketball players to strength train and condition. An environment for dedicated players to work hard, yet have fun as well. I work hard to stay on the cutting edge of basketball specific training methodology, techniques, and equipment to make sure I fulfill my goal.

 Dedication and commitment are essential for success in any endeavour, but especially in basketball. The game is so unbelievable competitive right now, if you aren’t dedicated, you won’t make it. That goes for everyone; from high school players to the NBA. Great players are incredibly dedicated. They are keenly focused on their own skill and physical development and on achieving their own personal goals. Great players are up early in the morning and work on their game, in some capacity, most of the day. They do that 5-6 days a week. That is dedication!

 On the topic of dedication, a powerful quote comes to mind (which was shared to me by the legendary Coach Don Meyer):

 “There are two pains in life. The pain of discipline and the pain of regret.

Take your choice.” 

 Everything in life, whether shopping for a new a TV or chasing your dream of playing in the NBA comes down to three simple questions:

 1)     What exactly do you want?

2)      What does it cost?

3)      Are you willing to pay the price?

 While listening to one of Coach Meyer’s stories he mentioned he heard that back in his prime, Tiger Woods used to make 100 9-ft putts in a row to end every practice. That is 100 consecutive putts. If he missed his 92nd putt, he started over! That is dedication. Keep in mind, in his prime, Tiger was the most dominant golfer of all time. I figure an appropriate equivalent for basketball players are free throws. Are you dedicated enough to end every workout with 5 or 10 or 20 consecutive free throws? Tiger went on to say, “If people knew how hard I worked they wouldn't think this came so easy to me.” I guess it is true; champions are made when no one is watching!

 Another example of dedication is what’s known as the NBA “early bus.” There are two buses that head to the arena before every NBA road game. One heads over 3 hours early and one heads over an hour and half early. The guys that head over on the early bus are usually rookies, guys fighting for playing time, guys on 10 day contracts, etc. Guys that need to put in the extra work as often as possible. They head over early to get up shots, work on their ball handling, and sometimes even lift weights. These guys are dedicated to getting better every day. Legend has it NBA superstar Tim Duncan continued to take the early bus every game, even after his legacy and super-stardom where solidified. In fact, the Spurs organization took notice and said “if our best player can take the early bus, then everyone can take the early bus.” Needless to say the Spurs only have one bus to games now!

 The truly dedicated players understand dedication isn’t a sometimes thing, it is an all the time thing. There is no such thing as being “kind of dedicated.” You are either dedicated or you’re not; there is no in between.

Now the question is, are you dedicated?

 The Following is an excerpt from the work of Alan Stein. Alan Stein is the world renowned Strength and Conditioning Coach of DeMatha High School as well as the Nike Basketball Camps.