Optimal Return To Basketball

Optimal Return To Basketball

Proudly presented by The Optimal Health Lab

There are important factors players of all ages and abilities must be aware of when returning to basketball after a long break. Physios Darcy & Scott from the Optimal Health Lab in Eltham sat down to talk about the important strategies players and coaches can adopt to reduce the risk of injury and return to the game at an optimal level. They also provided a basketball specific active warm up, home strength program & band warm up for our Wildcat members.

Eltham Wildcats Active Warm Up Routine

Eltham Home Strength Program

Eltham Wildcats Pre Training & Game Band Warm up

Optimal Tips For Junior Domestic Players & Parents

– Train at home/local court with your parents or friends
– Reload back into basketball nice and slowly
– Build strength up, get training loads back into your body
– Do a good warm up for training/games
– Talk to your coach if you are tired or sore
– Don’t expect to play a full game (fatigue can increase the risk of injury)
– Cool down (stretch, foam rolling, light walk)
– Hydration, nutrition & sleep
– Practise basketball movements (change of directions, jumping & landings, pivots)
– Low intensity training to begin with (skills based then build in competition)
– Prior injuries can reoccur, don’t push through it, get it checked and manage the injury

Optimal Tips For Coaches


– Make sure you do a good warm up (active/moving warm up & activation)
– Build trainings up nice and slowly. Start with low intensity skill based drills. Build up intensity and game play each week.
– Cool down as a team (team bonding opportunity) gentle stretching, walking, foam rolling etc

Game day:

– Make sure you do a good warm up (active/moving warm up & activation), meet up before the game and utilise an outdoor area/space
– Minimise and adjust game time for players, don’t play players full minutes
– Use your timeouts
– Talk/listen to your players and their parents (are they tired? Are they sore?)
– Utilise halftime with hydration, rest and small snack
– Warm down as a team (team bonding) utilise an outdoor area/space
– Encourage players to hydrate and have good nutrition after games
– If you overplay your players and work them into fatigue the risk of injury increases

Optimal Tips For Senior Domestic Players

– Start doing some light training at home (light running, gym, shoot around at your local court, home workouts)
– Practise basketball movements (change of direction, pivots, jumping & landing)
– Minimise risk of injury by building up a good strength base
– Ease back into playing
– Utilise your subs and time outs. Don’t try and play a full game
– Do a good warm up, don’t just jump straight onto the court after sitting at the desk all day
– Hydration, nutrition and sleep after the game
– Start exercising now, don’t wait until the week before the season starts
– Physically demanding jobs are not a substitute for exercise or strength training
– Prior injuries may reoccur when you begin playing again. Don’t push through it, get it checked and develop a plan to manage that injury