Friday, November 27, 2015

Life Lessons & Life Questions

Hello Everyone!

I believe the lessons learned from aspiring to be great in our sport (and/or great in our health) are the same lessons that make us successful in the competitive world we live in.

Lessons like:

  • We often can achieve far more as a team than we can on our own.
  • Having a good coach helps us maximize our training, planning, and execution. 
  • Our choices determine our results. We have the power of choice, therefore we have the power to get the results we want.
  • If we have hope and encouragement from those around us our success is much more likely (and more enjoyable). 
  • Success of any kind requires action, repeated over and over. 
Success of any kind requires repeated action. Photo credit: 
I could go on and on, but a better way for us to look at these lessons is to ask ourselves questions like:
  • Are you on a team with similar goals as you?
  • Do you have a good coach that is maximizing your efforts?
  • Do you take time to focus on quality choices?
  • Are you surrounded by others that are supportive and encouraging?
  • Are you doing the daily action required to achieve success?
I encourage you to ask yourself these questions at least once a week as a way to keep you on track and accountable to the future you want. 

Keep Training!
Coach Amanda Kephart 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Your Win Needs To Be A Team Win

Hello Everyone!

To be successful you have to first know what a win is for you. Without clearly defining what a win looks like it is hard to develop a plan and take appropriate action.

There is a common problem I see athletes have when they define their win:

  •  Their own win often does not translate to a win for their team.

Successful athletes understand that their personal win needs to also be a win for their team. Whether life or sport, athletes can’t win at the cost of selfishly sacrificing those around and then expect to have long-term success. As an athlete, you need to learn your role on the team and find a way to win your personal role in a way that translates to a win for your team.

The most successful athletes: stay true to themselves, their own wins, AND their team's win.

To be a great athlete you can't get caught up in personal accolades. Being an athlete means your coach will tell you what your team role is. You don’t (and let's be can't) tell your coach what your role is. You have to show up as best as you possibly can in your team role. To be successful, you need to show that you can put other people’s interests first AND can still achieve your own personal wins! That is true success! If you achieve your own personal win, but your team loses, how can you truly consider yourself a winner? You must achieve both!
At my PGC Basketball Athlete Performance College in Seattle, WA athletes trained to win at becoming quicker, stronger, and more explosive. This personal win will also help their teams win!

What should be empowering to know is that if a win for your team can not be a win for you personally (example: because of politics you won't play much) you can (and dare I say, should) find a new team where you can win for them and yourself. That's because this winning thing is at its best when it is reciprocal. If you can't win personally, you can't truly win for your team and vice versa.

Take some time to write down the following:

  • Wins for me
  • Wins for team
Once written, take some time, or even ask your coach to help you, to find ways to make sure that there is a reciprocal relationship between both. That way, you truly win.

Keep Training!
Coach Amanda Kephart

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Weight Room Hero but On-Court Zero

Hello Everyone!

I often warn athletes to be careful of being a weight room hero, but an on-court zero!

It is easy for athletes to get caught up in the process and forget the reason for why they are doing what they are doing. This is especially true for working out in the weight room. The number one reason why athletes should be training in a weight room is to enhance their performance on the court. Period. End of story.
Photo Credit:
Getting big muscles, moving big amounts of weight, and setting school records in the weight room mean nothing to an athlete if their training doesn't produce better performance in their sport. Yet, I often see athletes consumed with lifting as much weight as the other people in the weight room or how their muscles look. Neither of which gain an athlete any more playing time.

Sure a by-product of working out may be bigger muscles and the ability to move more weight (hence the science of exercise), but those are not the goal of the weight room for an athlete. We all have seen that big athlete who can move mountains in the weight room only to see them riding the bench because they can't perform on the court.
Photo Credit:
Athletes have to remember that sports like basketball are all about power and:
POWER is How Fast You Can Move Your Strength

Make sure your training in the weight room (and on-the-court like I explained here & here) produces the number one goal for an athlete TO IMPROVE PERFORMANCE. Don't be a weight room hero, but on-court zero!

Keep Training!
Coach Amanda Kephart

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Always On the Attack

Hello Everyone!

This past weekend I was in Dixon, California with PGC's Athlete Performance College (APC). The athletes, coaches, and PGC staff in attendance were an incredible group that really embraced the process needed to get quicker, stronger, and more explosive. A main theme of the APC weekend is to "be a shark".

To learn all the aspects of being a shark you'll have to attend an Athlete Performance College yourself, but one important aspect of it is if you are not attacking you are not trying to win, if you are not trying to win, why are you on the court?

It doesn't matter if you are on offense or defense, champion athletes are always in an attack mindset. Champion athletes are always hungry.
Dixon, CA had athletes that were ready to get better!
As an athlete that desires (or hungers) to be their best, it is important to understand that when you are not attacking you are not trying to win. It doesn't matter if you are up by 10 points with 0:12 seconds left on the clock. If you are on the court you need to have an attack mindset, you need to be trying to win, if not, why are you on the court?

Regardless, if you are an athlete that gets the opportunity to play D1, D2, D3, NAIA, or Juco, you will have to fight tooth and nail to get on the court. That same attack mindset to get on the court needs to stay with you when you are on the court. The only other alternative is that you are trying to lose. There is no middle ground, you are either trying to win, or trying to lose. Just like a basketball game ends with someone winning and someone losing, you have to play as a winner. That's why athletes have to learn an attack mindset. They can't wait for opportunities to come to them, they have to go find them. If you are starving for your dreams you will always be taking action. Always be on the attack.
Be a shark!
Keep Training!
Coach Amanda Kephart