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Struggles of an Athlete

  • Hayk Gyokchyan

Picking Your Off-Season Basketball Coach

The land of the ‘Offseason’ is probably just as demanding as gruesome ‘In-season’ schedules for any athlete. Offseason is the time where an athlete works on his skills, develops as a player and gets his body ready for the wear and tear of the upcoming season. Every decision taken in the offseason directly impacts in-season performance, positively or negatively. This post will illustrate the challenge of picking the correct basketball coach who will get you ready to your fullest potential.

A coach can either be a part of the player’s journey to success or downward spiral towards bad performance if not picked correctly. Each and every coach has his own philosophy, his unique regimen, and each player has his own aspects of his game that need to be developed, making the choice of picking your offseason coach a critical struggle. Personally, I have been working with the same coach for many years now for reasons I will discuss below.

Coach Tigran Gyokchyan has won many championships with different teams. He has coached the Armenian National team, Lebanese National team, and was a professional basketball player before becoming a coach. His resume speaks for itself, but in no way or form is it the essential reason why I decide to work with him every Offseason.

1. He is a Player’s Coach:

Being a player’s coach means being able to listen to the player’s body and mind. It means putting ego aside, thus being able to work with the player in a productive manner. Many coaches apply the same program to different players which tend to be either inadequate or overly repetitive for the player’s needs. Being a player’s coach means being able to develop a personalized program that pushes the player to the limit but never over it.

2. He follows my games all season long:

The perks of having an offseason coach who watches all your games throughout the season are colossal. Watching my games leads to having a better understanding of my needs and areas I need to work on. Watching my games, he learns the things that I am capable of doing, thus developing a regimen that is best fitted to improve moves that I can use in games.

3. Scheduling and Convenience:

Never underestimate the value of saving time and effort. My offseason basketball coach must be readily available and flexible with his schedule because basketball is not the only part of my offseason program. There is weightlifting, physical therapy, enjoying some of the couple months of break I get every year, and only a certain number of hours in a day to do all. Even if there were a better coach, but I would have to drive an hour through traffic to get to him, the time lost during that period would have a negative impact on my offseason. Even if there were a better coach, but he could only work with me at specific hours (say noon), then I would not have enough time to recover from my weightlifting session, hence I would be more prone to injuries.

Coach Tigran is my father. He has coached me since I was a kid. He knows what I can and cannot do maybe even better than me. Coach Tigran understands fully well that I am 28 years old, and an athlete at my age only has certain room for improvement, and he cannot be treated in the same manner as a 20-year-old player. He attends almost all of my games, and the ones he doesn’t he watches them on TV or online. He builds his whole schedule around mine so we could maximize productive hours and minimize time and effort lost in nonsense. On days that I have weightlifting in the mornings, we go to the gym in the evening, and vice versa.

For the above-mentioned reasons and many many more that I cannot put to paper, never will I ever work with a different coach during my Offseason, and the results I get from working with him every summer are more than what I expect.

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