- Dec 8, 2015
Yes! This is what I'm saying... basketball is way more individual and park time than other sports (in the USA at least).Basketball is a bit unique, in my experience.
I was fortunate enough to play basketball in college (and everything before: HS, AAU, travel, etc.) and my back was a disaster by the time I was 20. I didn't finish my college career because of it. In hindsight, I'm convinced the biggest problem wasn't all of the organized ball; it was the countless hours of pickup at parks May-Oct. Concrete/asphalt/whatever is absolutely horrible for your body if you're running and jumping. Your knees and your back, your ankles too. I gave up playing outside by the time I was 25. I tried playing once in my 30s and stopped after the first game.
So in HS, during the off-season, we'd have one or two weeknight practices for AAU (assuming it was that time of the year), games on the weekends, and then the other days we'd be at the park for 3+ hours. Ball was life. If AAU wasn't in-season and it wasn't warm enough outside we'd be at a local rec center almost every night. That's something that other sports don't have. You can't find quality pickup soccer, baseball, or football games at any time like you can with basketball. You may not be involved in the organized, crazy aspect of the youth development/showcase scene on those days but you are still putting a ton miles on your body. Hell, some days at the park playing 3-4 hours was more intensive than any AAU practice I ever participated in.
My absolute favorite thing about the game of basketball is that it isn't just practice and games. There are still thousands of kids in NYC out every night just playing because they love it. You don't see that with soccer or baseball here.