Basketball is a competitive sport. So, whenever you suit up and see action on the court, brace yourself not just for a physical match but also a mental struggle. Yes, the psychological aspect of the sport is just as intense and crucial as the physical side. For this exact reason, you have to develop a strong basketball mindset.

An unwavering and resilient mentality is often what sets a player apart from the rest. After all, having the mental toughness gives you an edge on any kind of field. Now if you want to develop a competitive mindset on the court, Coach Donald Watts has some tips just for you!

Basketball Mindset: Approaching Today’s Game The Right Way

Never back down from elite competition

When you are aiming to compete on the next level, there will always come a time that you would lock horns with a top-ranked player or someone ranked higher than you. While it can truly be a pressure-laden situation, never let it weaken your competitive spirit.

If you allow this to affect your mindset, a thought of immediate defeat will occupy your mind. Now when you lose the mental battle before the match begins, the focus and confidence to bring out the best in you will be gone in an instant. So, face elite competition head-on, and take everything in stride no matter the results. 

Come to think of it, matching up with high-ranking athletes may put you in a challenging situation, but for as long as you overcome the mental pressure, success may be well within reach. This can come in the form of a win, a career-high feat, or even a scholarship offer.

Tune out social media fuss

In recent times, social media platforms have become a hotbed of basketball content. Highlight reels and mixtapes of players are appearing and going viral online. This creates a general perception that these hoopers are unguardable, which may put pressure on other players.

In case the impact has gotten into you, learn to tune out social media distractions. Always remember that every highlight film is tampered in order to emphasize on a player’s strength. It should never be used as the sole barometer of skills and success on the court.

Just focus on your craft and put in the necessary work. This will improve your mental toughness in sport and harden your basketball mindset.

As Watts put it, “The game is not played on the ‘Gram, unless you let it be. The game is played on the floor. Nobody knows the type of work that you’ve been putting in and the dedication that you have but you.”

Mental Game

There is no denying that a basketball mindset impacts your performance on the court. So, learn to approach the mental aspect of the game the right way, and you will gain a leg up on the competition in no time.

13 steps to getting recruited for college basketball


Do you have goals to play at the college level, but don't have the recruitment you want or need to get there? Or maybe you have some recruitment, but it's not at the level you dream of playing at? 

Having a blueprint of the exact steps you need to take your recruitment to the next level will help you find your missing piece and create a clear path to your goals.

Take control of your future with this 13 Step Checklist to Increase Your Recruitment - written for serious players by Coach Watts who was a D-1 and pro standout and has helped hundreds of players like you earn a college scholarship!

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