Are you looking for a new drill to improve your shooting so you can score like the best of them? If so, try the Dirk Nowitzki shooting drill. He does this in the offseason for his basketball workout and if you want to score better, you have to give it try.
Dirk Nowitzki is often considered the original unicorn of the NBA.
When he entered the league in 1998, he was a rare type of player. He was 7-feet tall but was able to shoot the ball like a guard. He wasn’t like any of the other big men at the time, who mainly scored from the post.
Nowitzki often pulled up for jumpers, shot 3-pointers, did spin moves, and cut for mid-range jumpers.
His playstyle was different and this disoriented a lot of the American bigs in the NBA.
But as players got more comfortable with Dirk, they started to figure out ways to defend him.
At first, this stunned him.
However, as a professional does, he went to the drawing board (or the basketball court in this case I suppose) and looked for new ways to break down the defence.
Dirk Nowitzki’s Odd Basketball Workout
And one of the activities he did was this peculiar shooting workout that his trainer, Holger Geschwindner, taught him.
This workout makes you do weird things. Not weird to the point where you have to eat a Popsicle while balancing a fork on your finger, as you shoot free-throws, but it is unorthodox.
There’s lots of spinning, lunging, and hopping before you shoot the ball or go in for a layup (as the video above illustrates).
When I first watched the exercises, my initial thought was, “how do these drills help with basketball?”
You’re probably thinking that too. But then I thought about it. These odd movements teach you how to be balanced, and thus help improve your footwork and shooting.
It’s just like in Karate Kid. When Mr. Miyagi made Daniel LaRusso wash his car and paint his fence, it wasn’t to get chores done.
The end goal of those exercises was to teach Daniel-son how to block strikes.
And that’s what Geschwindner’s drills do as well.
Its purpose is to teach players how to score when they’re frazzled and unbalanced. It shows players how to regain composure and how to get into their shooting position after escaping a pesky defender.
It’s not meant to teach you how to pull off the pirouette in a game.
Why This Workout Worked For Dirk
These were the type of drills that Nowitzki needed.
When he became the Dallas Mavericks’ go-to player, defenders began to clamour him up (much like what they do to his successor, Luka Doncic, right now).
They didn’t want him to shoot the ball (as they knew the result), so they made it as difficult for him as they can. They played physical with him and stuck to him like white on rice.
So, Nowitzki used his trainer’s odd exercises (along with some other things) to evolve and it worked out for him.
In 2007, he won the NBA’s MVP title.
And in 2011, he beat a Miami Heat team led by LeBron James and Dwyane Wade to win the NBA Championship title with the Mavs (and was also deemed the Finals’ MVP).
How This Drill Can Benefit You
What I want you to get out of this story is that you shouldn’t judge a seemingly odd drill or workout until you’ve tried it.
There can be a ton of benefits that you don’t realize until after you’ve done it.
If the drill looks safe, give it a go.
It may be the one thing that elevates your game to the next level.
How To Do Nowtizki’s Odd Basketball Workout
So, if you’re interested in trying the Dirk Nowitzki Shooting Drill, you can learn it in the following video:
Some Key Notes:
- Watch the video thoroughly before trying the workout. Make sure you know the movements.
- Start off slow and get the footwork down first before worrying about making shots.
- If the exercises look too confusing, start with one drill. Once you’re comfortable with it (you have the steps down), practice doing the following one. Keep doing this until you can do the entire workout in one session.
- Be patient. It will take time for you to get good at these movements (and longer to start using them in games).
Dirk Nowitzki is one of the best shooters to have ever played NBA basketball.
He is a legend.
And he reached this level by working hard and by doing unusual workouts.
So, if you want to be like Dirk, you have to try his shooting drill (and other ones that seem odd, too)