What is a "PROFESSIONAL" Basketball Trainer?
by Devin Williams on Jul 01, 2018
In college, there are actual basketball classes, I know because I was in one at Fresno State. I was shocked that there was even a basketball class to begin with. To no surprise, this was a class for beginners. My expectations were super high for whatever reason. I was expecting to learn new information about pick and rolls, moving without the ball, things like that. Instead they were teaching what the free throw line is and how many points the three point line was worth…what a travel and a double dribble is.
Years later, Im a basketball trainer, and thinking back on things…there really is no place where you can get a degree in basketball, so where do you get the term professional basketball trainer? What does it even mean, and what qualifies you to be a pro? The short answer to that is…nothing…id like to tell you that it’s experience, but I’ve seen some wild stuff over the years. You can decide tomorrow that you are a pro trainer. Seriously…If you have a friend who is playing professionally, you can have them post a picture of you two together stating that you’ve taught them everything they know and BOOM…you’re a pro (to the people who have no idea what’s really going on). I’ve actually seen this before.
I personally do think that I am a professional basketball trainer and I only believe that because I’ve studied it from others who are smarter than me. Allow me to explain.
I started out training players for free. Many of you know that I did it because I had no clue what I was doing so I didn’t want to charge people just because I knew how to dribble the ball. The guys I started off were my test subjects. Some ended up a success, and others a failure. The whole day before I’d train these guys, I’d sit in a computer lab and watch basketball ALL DAY. I invested into NBA LEAGUE PASS which allowed me to watch all of the games on replay whenever I wanted. I’d look at literally everything, the spacing on the floor, to the similarities the shooters had, I’d even look at which players were best at cheering their teammates along while on the bench.
Years later I saw the result of that as the kids I worked with went to college, played pro, and even sometimes moved onto other things.
Eventually I began to charge because I learned to value myself and the time that I put into my craft. Information is worth money. We pay money to go to school to receive information so that we can go into the world and make more money than we paid for school. I believed that I had information that was worth millions ( I really believed that and still do). Even still, at that point I didn’t consider myself to be a pro.
But one day I started training players in college who were REALLY good, better than I ever was. I know most college kids can’t afford to pay for training, but i refused to train for free. We found out a way to compensate me for my time, but it wasn’t money that they paid with. See….Watching league pass is one thing, but learning first hand from a college coach is another. Their coaches allowed me access to their film and also to sit in on practices, and for me, this was a game changer.
Clips that were organized by where players were on the court, ISOLATION, TRANSITION, PICK AND ROLL, HAND OFF, I instantly knew I wasn’t going to sleep for the next few nights because I’d be locked into learning. If it’s money that you seek, then seek to be educated.
Those college players, turned into overseas players, those overseas players turned into NBA players. I taught them what I knew from traveling all over the world and studying this sport, and they blessed me with information…FILM….
As time went by, people who were considered professional coaches, players, and trainers began to call me a professional trainer. It was at that point that I was sure of it, I WAS A PROFESSIONAL TRAINER. From that point on I started charging these players and everyone else that wanted to learn what I’ve put so many hours into.
Today I’ve trained over 100 college athletes, and helped more than half of them get there. I see that what it is that I’m doing works because of how fast Ive learned to help players apply the things that we work on. Sometimes things go wrong, but most of the time they go right. It’s what being IN THE LAB is about. You’re going to have experiments that fail on you, but those are teaching points, a time to learn from those experiences.
To those still reading, value yourself if you’ve put the work in. You are worth a dollar amount. In some cases, the info that you receive over time will determine your value. But beware! before you declare yourself a “PROFESSIONAL”, know that the curtain always gets pulled back. The truth of what you did or did not do will come to light.