Q: Hi, I am a university women's basketball player I was wondering, do you think it is beneficial to be using a shooting machine, rather than shooting on my own? (As long as I concentrate on shooting with proper technique) My goal this summer is to shoot 500-600 shots a day (besides the scrimmages that I participate in).
A: I have mixed feelings about the shooting machines. They are sold because people think
repetitions are everything, but they're not. Awareness of what you're doing is everything!
You can learn more from one shot, if truly aware, than you can from 100 or 1,000 shots.
Most players are just firing them up there. The machines make them shoot higher, and
that might help, but if you don't learn from the experience of shooting higher, what's the point in that?
And once you truly learn how to apply awareness, you don't need 500 shots a day to learn
to shoot. And your shots will be going in and dropping down, often coming back toward
you, when swished or hitting the back rim, so you can get a lot of practice in pretty quickly. You'll need to take a lot of shots, however, to learn and re-learn and groove your technique and learn to trust yourself, so a machine that doesn't change or interfere with your stroke can be helpful for that.
Again, awareness is the key. When you're aware of what you're doing with your body, arms and hands, you will get better and better in less and less time. When you know where you want to go (my video shows that), then learning is really accelerated. Once you "know" what you're doing, you don't need thousands of repetitions to groove it. That's what most players are doing, trying to groove an unknown and/or unreliable stroke