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These basketball shooting tips are a great way for players, parents and coaches to learn and understand the proper mechanics and techniques needed to be a great shooter.
Every basketball player loves to shoot the ball! The most practiced skill in the game is shooting. Coaches spend a good deal of their practice time on shooting drills to improve their players’ skill level. After all, if you can’t shoot – you can’t score!
Whether a player is shooting a jump shot, lay-up, or free throw – there are certain techniques they must use to be successful. The basketball shooting tips below will give players, parents and coaches a better understanding of what these techniques are!
Remember BEEF (Balance, Eye, Elbow, Follow Through) when shooting the basketball. Get into the habit of always using these proper shooting techniques – whether in practices or a game. If proper techniques are not used, bad habits are formed that are often difficult to correct. If players don’t have a shooting technique – they need to develop one!
Be relaxed and concentrate on the basket. Focus on the back of the rim as you make a jump shot or shoot from the free throw line. When shooting lay-ups and bank shots, focus on the part of the backboard where you will bank the ball.
Know when you have a good shot – and then take it. Find the right balance between shooting too often and not shooting enough. As you develop confidence in your shot, you will also develop the ability to know when you have a good shot to take.
Be in proper balance when shooting the basketball. Proper balance (front to back and side to side) is critical on all shots.
Follow through on every shot you take. Hold your follow through as this is one thing that will show you why you made or missed the shot.
Jump naturally. please!! Avoid forcing your jump – it should be nice and easy. You should jump straight up in the air smoothly and release the shot at the top of your jump letting the force easily slide off your fingers at the same time
“Up, Hang, Shoot” is an easy way to remember this.
Make sure you have an arc on every shot you take. The height of the arc will vary from player to player. Some players shoot with a high arc, while others have more of a flat shot. As long as you are using proper shooting techniques and the shots are going in, then the arc is fine.
Be relaxed when shooting free throws. Concentrate on the basket, and have your knees bent slightly. Keep your routine simple. This helps you concentrate more on your shot and not your routine. Avoid excessive and unnecessary movement. Only use the motion needed to take and make the shot.
Practice all of your shots. Learn to shoot from any location on the court, within your range. By doing this, you become more of an all-around shooter. Strive for the following shooting goals: 99+% lay-ups, 70+% free-throws, 50+% field goals, 33+% 3-pointers. These goals can be modified for younger players.
America’s Unbeaten Food Challenges
For many people, the word eating challenge evokes the iconic scene in the movie “The Great Outdoors,”when John Candy tackles “The Old 96er” to the chagrin of his digestive tract. More recently, the Travel Channel’s “Man vs. Food” show has popularized eating challenges, which have increasingly become a strategy for restaurants across the country to make a name for themselves, draw in new customers, and simply have fun.
For those testing their fortitude through eating challenges, clearing a plate of outrageously large or spicy meals will often win them a T-shirt, their photo on the wall, and dinner on the house. There are some challenges, however, that push the limits of consumption and no individual has yet to cross the proverbial finish line.
‘That Burger’ Challenge
Restaurant: That Bar
Location: Danville, California
A massive, undefeated burger challenge can be found at That Bar in Danville, California. Appropriately named “That Burger,” the monstrous mass of meat and cheese measures approximately 1 foot in diameter, and includes two 100 percent Angus beef patties, one of which has a hole in the middle where a grilled cheese sandwich is placed. Each patty is topped with four different cheeses – cheddar, American, pepper jack and Swiss – as well as a woven bacon patty. Finally, the burger is topped with crispy shoestring fries and doused in barbeque sauce, with an appropriately sized bun. The challenge also includes one-quarter pound each of fries and onion rings on the side.
In more than 40 attempts, nobody has been able to finish the challenge in the allotted time of one hour. “We’re going to need a professional eater to do this challenge,” says Stephanie Emig, co-owner and co-founder of That Bar, which is located about 30 minutes outside of San Francisco. “We wanted to have a giant burger. It was a collaboration between the three owners and our chef, and it took a couple tries but eventually we got it to work.”
Emig says the burger was created in order to have an interesting menu item. When someone does place an order for the That Burger, it’s likely for a group to share. “It’s a popular burger on weekend nights for big groups. And if someone does manage to get through this pile of meat and grease all by themselves: They will earn a T-shirt that reads “I ate That Burger at That Bar and it was That Good.”
The Inferno Bowl
Restaurant: Nitally’s ThaiMex Cuisine
Location: St. Petersburg, Florida
Generally, there are two things that make an eating challenge difficult: sheer size of the portion, or overwhelming heat or spice. The Inferno Bowl at Nitally’s ThaiMex Cuisine has both.
The soup is served in a 48 ounce bowl and includes no less than 12 different peppers from around the world. Although the mix changes with the season, it always includes bhut jolokia (also known as the “ghost chili”). The chilies themselves comprise about 16 ounces of the soup. The restaurant uses both Thai and Mexican techniques to draw as much heat out of the peppers as possible.
Ally Valdez, who owns Nitally’s with his wife, describes how the dish was created: “My wife is from Thailand and my family is from Mexico…we always argued about who ate the hottest food. So, we went out of our way to find the hottest peppers we could use and made a soup that hardly any family members could eat.” They served the soup in traditional Chinese bowls meant for family-sized servings, but limited it to one person. “We found that the people who could eat the hot food couldn’t eat that much, and the family members who could deal with the quantity couldn’t handle the heat.”
Valdez says that since the challenge began in 2009, 116 people have attempted to finish the Inferno Bowl. The closest challenger came within two spoonfuls before throwing in the towel. Others throw in more than that. The Inferno Soup is so spicy that the restaurant requires challengers to eat it outside, since about 40 percent of the challengers have vomited while trying to finish the soup within the 30 minutes allotted.
“You have to come from the depths of hell to finish this,” says Valdez, who is currently offering a jackpot of $800 to the first person to conquer the Inferno Bowl.
The Full-o-Bull Challenge
Restaurant: Cowtown Diner
Location: Fort Worth, Texas
Not only does Cowtown Diner’s Full-o-Bull Challenge boast that it serves the largest chicken fried steak in the world, it might very well be the largest eating challenge, to boot. That’s not a surprising claim, given that things are always bigger in Texas. The Full-o-Bull “is Texas to the core,” says Scott Jones, owner of Cowtown Diner.
The challenge includes a 64 ounce chicken fried steak, served on an extra-large pizza pan, measures 14 inches in diameter and weighs about 10 pounds with gravy. But wait, that’s not all: You must also finish the Texas-sized sides, which include four pounds of mashed potatoes and 10 pieces of Texas toast.
There’s one piece of good news: The time limit to the Full-o-Bull challenge is relatively leisurely. You have from when the restaurant opens at 7 a.m. to the time it closes at 2 a.m. to finish the meal.
In the nearly two years since the challenge was created, close to 175 challengers have tried and failed to finish the Full-o-Bull. Jones says the inspiration for the challenge was to have “bragging rights in a place that is known for its beef,” and notes that when someone takes on the challenge, the staff sings songs and draws attention to the event.
If anyone ever wins the challenge, they’ll get their $70 meal on the house and a shirt that reads “I came to Cowtown Diner hungry and left Full-o-Bull.”
The J&J’s Kitchen Sink Challenge
Restaurant: J&J’s Pizza Shack
Location: Northern Indiana (five locations)
In what is perhaps the oldest undefeated eating challenge in the country, the Kitchen Sink challenge at J&J’s Pizza Shack in Indiana has confounded eaters for 27 years. The pizza is the brainchild of John Bogdan, the now-retired founder of J&J’s, who created the 16-inch round deep-dish pizza, It includes sausage, pepperoni, mushrooms, green peppers, onions, green olives, black olives, ham, Canadian bacon, bacon bits, and mozzarella cheese; it weighs about 6 pounds and must be completed within one hour.
Kim S., the manager at the Lake Station restaurant, says the Kitchen Sink is an extremely popular dish for J&J’s, because most orders are for groups and corporate events. In fact, The Kitchen Sink is the restaurant’s best-selling specialty pizza.
The pizza, which is intended to feed four to six people, has an estimated two to three challengers per year, and at least 100 people have attempted the challenge in the history of J&J’s. Surprisingly, the closest anyone has come in recent history to finishing the pizza was a 12-year-old girl, who ate 16 of the 20 pieces before she had to give in.
“When someone does try, the wait staff is all curious, because we really want to see someone do it,” says Kim. And, what does someone win if they do finish off the pie? They don’t have to pay the bill – the $27.55 pizza is free.
Note: The pizza pictured left is not the challenge pizza, but a normal-sized “Kitchen Sink” from J&J’s.
The Hail Mary Challenge
Restaurant: Stadium Grill
Location: Columbia, Missouri
Since opening in August 2009, Stadium Grill in Columbia, Missouri has been offering the “Hail Mary Challenge,” which involves finishing the “Unnecessary Roughness,” a massive burger measuring an impressive 8 inches high. Restaurant manager Joe Collins says more than 150 challengers have attempted to conquer the burger, including competitive eater Randy Santel. All have failed.
The Unnecessary Roughness includes five-plus pounds of meat, including griddled burgers, bacon, and pulled pork, three cheeses, onion rings, and fried eggs, all stacked between two buns. To complete the challenge, a contender not only must finish the burger but also polish off a full pound of French fries, all within 60 minutes. If someone can conquer The Hail Mary challenge, they will be rewarded with their meal on the house (a $50 value) and $50 in food and drink every month for a year. Best of all, you will become legend in your own time: The Stadium Grill will name the burger after the first victor.
Collins says the burger does a good job of bringing business to the restaurant. “We display it on the weekends for people to see, and we’ll sometimes display it out in front of the door.” Those that do order it are most likely to share it with friends. “That’s not part of the challenge,” says Collins, but he’s happy to sell it anyway he can.
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You may have heard that the U.S. Congress recently reaffirmed that pizza is a vegetable. Of course, the situation is more complicated than that. The U.S. Department of Agriculture—which regulates the school lunches served to millions of American children—proposed a new standard for school lunches. Specifically, they suggested reducing the amount of sodium in school lunches, and they also wanted to cut down on french fries and pizza. As it stands, two tablespoons of tomato paste (the amount that goes on a one-serving pizza) counts as a vegetable. The USDA suggested raising that to half a cup, which would mean that a one-serving pizza would no longer be a vegetable. Last week, Congress nixed these new regulations and reaffirmed that two tablespoons of tomato paste counts as a vegetable. (If you are old enough, this may remind you of President Ronald Reagan declaring ketchup to be a vegetable in 1982. The difference however is that Reagan never succeeded in implementing that suggestion.)
Depending on who you ask, a single food (or word, for that matter) may be classified in any number of ways. A scale performs a different function for a chef than for a personal trainer. One measures food, the other a person. Sometimes the difference in classification can be attributed to regional dialects. For example, depending on where you live in the United States, you may call a sweet carbonated beverage coke, pop or soda. (Read more about that fraught debate here.) In other cases, the common, or colloquial, definition does not match the technical, scientific definition.
The word “vegetable” comes from the Latin word vegere which meant “to be alive or active,” but it did not denote anything about food. For a long time the word “vegetable” was used synonymously with the word “plant.” As late as 1858, Oliver Wendell Holmes called both trees and peaches “vegetables,” in his book The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table.
What are vegetables now? Well, that depends on who you ask. Botanists, nutritionists, government agencies and everyday people all hold contradictory opinions on the matter. Let’s take the example of two tablespoons of tomato sauce. We already know what Congress thinks of that, but what does the USDA recommended nutrition think of it? Tomatoes are part of the family of “Red or Orange Vegetables” which also includes squash, carrots and red peppers. Botanists would say that tomatoes are Solanum lycopersicum, and we technically eat the fruit of the plant. (Genetically speaking, the tomato is very closely related to the potato.) According to nutritionists anything from beets (which are roots) to spinach (which are leaves) to tomatoes (which are fruits) count as “vegetables.” They are typically rich in nutrients and low in fat and protein. The main difference between fruits and vegetables are that fruits are sweet (and higher in sugar) and vegetables are savory (and lower in sugar). Find out what makes a berry a berry here.
Today vegetables have gotten a bad rap. They are seen as flavorless and disgusting, even though there are some desserts (carrot cake for one) that are made with “vegetables.” Maybe the word is the problem.
What do you think counts as a vegetable? Does the word itself change your feelings towards it?
good old food
NBA lockout: NBA players reject latest offer, putting season in jeopardy
After meeting for nearly four hours, the National Basketball Players Association announced its plans to disband in preparation for filing an antitrust lawsuit against the league. The move touched off an exchange of forceful and ominous rhetoric in a conflict that began in July and likely will continue through at least the end of the calendar year.
NBA players rejected the league’s latest offer Monday and began disbanding the union, likely jeopardizing the season. (Nov. 14)
“There will ultimately be a new collective bargaining agreement,” Stern said in a statement issued by the league, “but the 2011-12 season is now in jeopardy.”
Billy Hunter, who was the union’s executive director but will now head the players’ trade association, said Stern’s ultimatum to accept the league’s most recent proposal or receive a worse offer later was “extremely unfair.” Hunter said the union was forced to take this next step after Stern told the players last week that the owners were done negotiating them.
“We’ve arrived at the conclusion that the collective bargaining process has completely broken down,” Hunter said.
Although Stern did not announce the cancellation of any more games, Washington Wizards free agent and union vice president Maurice Evans said the players were aware of the risks of taking this path. Players were scheduled to miss their first paycheck Tuesday.
“We understand the consequences of potentially missing the season; we understand the consequences that players could potentially face if things don’t go our way, but it’s a risk worth taking,” Evans said. “It’s the right move to do.”
By taking their interests to the courts rather than the negotiating table, the NBA players would be employing a strategy similar to that used earlier this year by the NFL players, who filed to disband their union shortly before the owners locked them out in March. That led to a series of court battles over the next several months — with the players challenging the legality of the lockout and the league objecting to the legitimacy of the union’s dissolution.
Those issues ended up not amounting to much, as a new labor agreement was reached in August while legal appeals were still pending.
The significant difference in the NBA’s case is one of timing. While the NFL was forced to cancel only one exhibition game, the NBA already has canceled the first four weeks of its regular season, and Stern has said the league will need 30 days from the time an agreement is reached before games can begin. If that’s the case, the league’s popular Christmas Day schedule appears to be threatened — and if the courts are to provide the resolution, the entire season is in question.