First things first, before you go to the weight room or playing basketball, you should stretch your entire body, particularly the muscle groups that you will be using for the upcoming training.

 

Importance of Stretching for Basketball

Not having enough stretch will limit your range of motion and tighten your joints and muscles, which will impede your flexibility and wind up in affecting your athleticism or even increasing the risk of injury.

When I was in high school, I didn’t take stretching seriously and it brought lots of soreness to my muscles and highly restricting my athletic ability. After knowing that, I started to stretch at least 10 – 15 minutes every day and it made me way more explosive than I had ever been.

 

Static Stretching and Dynamic Stretching

For those of you who doesn’t know whether you should be doing static stretching or dynamic stretching, you should first learn about the difference between them.

If you haven’t done any stretching exercises before, static stretching is more suitable for you. Remember to warm up your muscles before you stretch.

It is a relatively deep and slow stretch, executed by stretching your muscle until you feel a bit of tension, then held in place for a period, it is recommended to hold the stretch for about 15 – 30 seconds and at least 2 – 3 times to really enhance your flexibility and mobility.

 

Dynamic stretching, on the other hand, is more challenging. It should be done only if you already have a solid grasp of static stretching. It can be done as a warm-up exercise.

It is a series of motion executed by moving your joints and muscles repeatedly through a full range of motion, which can also increase your flexibility and loosen up your joints and muscles, prepare your body and get ready for more intense workouts.

 

Static Stretches

  • Shoulder Stretch

1. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, place your right arm across your chest.

2. Use your left hand to pull it towards your chest slowly. You should feel the tension on your right shoulder.

3. Hold for about 15 – 30 seconds and repeat on the other side.

 

  • Tricep Stretch

1. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, bend your right elbow and place it over your head.

2. Slightly pull your right elbow downwards with your left hand, your right palm should touch down of your back as far as you can. You should feel the tension on your right triceps.

3. Hold for about 15 – 30 seconds and repeat on the other side.

 

  • Standing Quadricep Stretch

1. Stand on your left leg and hold onto support like a chair or a wall with your left hand.

2. Bend your right knee and hold the ankle with your right hand. As you keep your knees in one line and hold your leg in the bent position. You should feel the tension on your right quadriceps.

3. Hold for about 15 – 30 seconds and repeat on the other side.

 

  • Standing Hamstring Stretch

1. Stand straight and place your left leg on a chair or a bench.

2. Slightly bend your right leg and touch your left toes. You should feel the tension behind your left thigh.

 

  • Standing Calf Stretch

1. Stand about 1 – 2 feet away from the wall. Place your right toes on the wall and keep your heel on the ground.

2. Keep both of your legs straight and lean towards the wall. You should feel the tension on your right calf.

3. Hold for about 15 – 30 seconds and repeat on the other side.

 

  • Butterfly Stretch

1. Sit upright and bring the soles of your feet together while bending your knees.

2. Keep your back straight and pull your feet towards your body slowly. You should feel the tension on your thighs.

3. Hold for about 15 – 30 seconds.

 

  • Seated Spinal Twist

1. Get into a seated position with both legs straight out.

2. Bend your right knee, cross it over and place it next to your left thigh.

3. Use your left arm to press your right thigh while twisting your body to the right. You should feel the tension on your spine.

4. Hold for about 15 – 30 seconds and repeat on the other side.

  • All these static stretches should be held for about 15 – 30 seconds and repeat at least 2 – 3 times for each side.

 

Dynamic Stretch

  • Toy Soldier Stretch

1. Stand upright with your feet hip width apart and engage your core.

2. Swing your right leg up as high as possible while keeping it straight.

3. Put your left arm out and try to reach it. You should feel the tension on your right hamstring.

4. Return to the starting position and alternate with the other leg.

5. Do at least 10 – 15 times for each side.

 

  • Runners Lunge

1. Hold in a plank position, step your right foot forward between your hands.

2. Slowly move your hips toward the ground.

3. You should feel the tension on your right hip.

4. Do at least 10 – 15 times for each side.

 

  • Lunges With Twists

1. Step forward and lower your hips into a lunge position. Keep your front knee behind your toes to avoid injury.

2. Slowly twist toward the same side for more tension on your hip. Hold for 1 – 2 seconds then switch to the other side.

3. Do it at least 10 – 15 times for each side.

 

  • Bodyweight Squats

1. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and place your arms on the back of your head. Your toes can slightly turned out.

2. Keep your core tight and lower your knees to 90 degrees.

3. Hold for 1 – 2 seconds, you should feel the tension on your hips.

4. Return to the starting position.

5. Do at least 10 – 15 times.

 

  • Walking Quad Pull

1. This exercise is similar to the standing quadriceps stretch.

2. Stand on your left leg, bend your right knee and hold the ankle with your right hand.

3. As you keep your knees in one line and hold your leg in the bent position. You should feel the tension on your right quadriceps.

4. Hold for 1 – 2 seconds, you should feel the tension on your right quad.

5. Return to the starting position and alternate with the other leg.

 

Stretching Exercises for Basketball

Conclusion

Now, you should already have a better understanding of static stretching as well as dynamic stretching and which type you should be doing before workouts.

So, if you are serious about basketball, start stretching on a daily basis and I’m sure you will be amazed by how much you can improve through these simple exercises.

If you have any questions, please let me know and I’ll be happy to help you out.

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