How NBA players could battle COVID-19 and influence young players

COVID-19 has impacted many lives, especially professional athletes. Many saw their seasons postponed both during and before the competition began. So, what is the best way to prepare for a long hiatus with no basketball for a professional athlete? 

One short answer is a healthy diet and exercise. 

While many players view the two as common practices, some are indulging in junk food and unhealthy foods during this break. Hot Cheetos, ice cream and cookies have been common foods players have posted on their social media profiles.

The best way is to separate yourself is to continue to work out every day and burn the fat you consume from the food you eat. Great meals include plant-based foods, and a ketogenic diet promotes weight control

There will be an abundance of players who will take this time and not value it. The best thing to do is stay in the gym, a home one if you have it, and remain in shape. Whenever the NBA season does return, it will be apparent who goofed off their time and who took advantage.

This is what separates the stars from the superstars, the great players from the legends. Lookup any tape from Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant or Lebron James. These legends did not take breaks during the offseason. Often, they worked even harder and longer in the gym perfecting their craft every single day. 


For all those young players who aspire to be great and want to become the best, they should watch these players and see how they took care of their bodies during prime years that destined them for greatness. If you want to truly be great in the NBA, the work has to be put in when nobody is watching. What better time than the present when there is an abundance of free time?

With how things are looking, the NBA will not resume until at least July, if fans are even lucky enough to see their teams by then. As a result of the indefinite schedule, questions have been asked about whether the league will go straight into playoffs or have some sort of regular-season finale. Playoffs could begin as soon as mid-August and then the Finals would follow.

How can young players improve their game?

While professionals still have a bunch of time to get ahead of the curve, so do the youth. Although social distancing is of the utmost importance, there are still many ways to perfect your craft in your driveway. 

For those with a basketball hoop available, make at least 100 shots every day while incorporating skill moves. Work on your off-hand layups and ball-handling. In the midst of the season, you do not have as much practice time compared to the offseason. But now, take the time to master your strengths skills and build on your weaknesses. This allows for improvement as an all-around player and separates you from those who rely on talent alone. 

Lastly, maintain strength and conditioning.  Despite no gyms being open, use bodyweight exercises to build on your physical strength. More experienced players will look to expose your weaknesses: prove that you do not have any, physically or mentally. With strength, you can hold your own in the paint while successfully posting up players on the offensive end. Enjoy the great outdoors by going for a run in your neighborhood or around a local trail. When opponents start to fatigue in the fourth quarter, you will be ready to go due to intense training. 

There are many ways an NBA player can prepare for what is ahead by doing their due diligence in the short term which will pay huge dividends down the line. Young athletes can also learn a thing or two and improve their own game.

Once the season suspension ends, you will know who put in the work and took this time seriously, both in your own league and the NBA.