Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Basketball: Playing Defense (why it's hard for older guys)

For the past several months, in addition to my regimen of playing league (when in season) and pick up basketball, I have been working out at the gym pretty frequently.  In the past, I used to just do cardio exercise with some light weight work.   Since my office gym isn't all too crowded, I've spent more time on weight work, primarily focusing on arms, chest and shoulders.  However, I decided to do some leg muscle work as well.

The leg work seemed to have a bit of an unexpected effect on my basketball playing.   I seemed to get a little more bounce in my step playing DEFENSE.  I've never been the quickest guy in the world but in the past couple of months, I've noticed I'm able to stay in front of younger / quicker guys a little bit better.    My friends will laugh at this as I'm better known for my jump shooting than defense but I have been moving my feet a little better.

Alas, there is a flip side to this.  After playing several hours of pick up ball on Saturday (guarding a couple of quick guys), my knees were quite sore.  I think younger guys have more energy and recover faster.  If I was asked to play ball the next day, it would have been difficult.   Plus, if you focus on defense, your offense suffers a bit.    It is extremely hard to be a two way player.

Regardless, it's pretty fun to try to guard quick players at my age.  Who says old people can't play?

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