My daughter gave birth to my 6th grandbaby on Saturday morning and so last night after training, I decided to go see her and the baby again at the hospital. As I was leaving the gym I remembered that my 2 grandsons had basketball practice right near there so I decided to go and watch them first. After getting lost and then having to drive around the school, on the sidewalk, I finally parked the car and got into the gym just after my youngest grandson, Bubba, had finished but just in time to see my older grandson, Dalton, start his practice. And was it fun to watch.

Dalton plays on an 8 year old team so you can imagine what that must look like. All sizes, shapes, and skill levels. Suffice it to say that none of these kids were fathered by LeBron James. Without boring you with the details, what I noticed most was that each kid was having a blast. They learned some basic fundamentals, setting a screen, blocking out, dribbling with both hands, etc. Each kid was corrected in a very short and precise manner, focus on just 1 mistake they made. Then they were sent off to try again. None of the kids hung their heads after they made the mistake or after they were told about it. They would just run back, smiling and laughing, to their line and wait for their next turn. There was a whole of looking around at what the other teams were doing. They were watching the other guys on their team were doing (Mirror neurons working?). The drills lasted just long enough for the kids not to become bored. At the end of the 45 minutes, the kids were laughing and playing and wanting more. And this was all accomplished without even 1 minute of scrimmaging not any mention of scrimmaging by either the Coaches or players, even though the other 3 teams were scrimmaging for about half their practice time.

Was the practice so great, that they all became all stars or the best players in the league? No, far from it. But each kid was a little better after the practice than they were before it started. Each kid gave a great effort in trying to do each drill, even if it was wrong, the effort was there because no limits were put on them. And each kid was excited to come back for Wednesday night’s practice.

Now I don’t if this was planned to turn out this way or not. Maybe the Coach just did it by accident. I don’t care as long as he does it all season. I am sorry I didn’t get to meet Dalton’s Coach and congratulate him for such a great practice. But you can be sure I will next time.

Rufus

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