All the products listed on this page are products that I have personally used and found to have the substance that make the use of it valuable. I am not asking you to purchase, just offering you items that I feel are of value to a coach.

By clicking on the item you will be directed to the company from which you can purchase.

Basketball’s Third Element: Improvisation, Volume I

This book is the result of many years of study in an interesting segment of a basketball game – a segment that has always been there but remained hidden. These three chapters highlight not only the concept but the factual information which confirms that concept. It is targeted for coaches but will be a source of information for players, administrators, and fans. The author, Ron Ekker, has had extensive basketball coaching experience including high school, college, and the NBA. Though the book is small, it has a stunning message.

Basketball’s Third Element: Improvisation, Volume II

Volume II of Basketball’s Third Element: Improvisation is in essence a bridge between the theory (Volume I) and the implementation of the theory (Volume III). The theory we have put forth is that there is a third element in each game that goes unnoticed but is highly productive. It requires the use of improvisation which, in turn, is dependent on instincts. This volume builds the basis for Volume III which is essentially a coaching manual for a method of training and playing in the third element. It stays attached, in principle, to the theory of Volume I by developing a case for the technical portion that is the coaching manual. It explains the background of improvisation and instinctive play, the background of the Monk System, and the background of teaching in the system so that third element learning is advanced.

Basketball’s Third Element: Improvisation, Volume III

In Volume III we discuss the nuts and bolts of a system. It takes a step-by-step approach to offense and defense. All the drills that relate to the system are diagrammed and explained. The rules in both the offensive and defensive plans are given. This Volume ends with practice planning and offers the first twelve practice plans for developing the Monk System. Volume III brings closure to the entire theory and application.

Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game by Michael Lewis

Moneyball is a quest for the secret of success in baseball. Following the low-budget Oakland Athletics, their larger-than-life general manger, Billy Beane, and the strange brotherhood of amateur baseball enthusiasts, Michael Lewis has written not only “the single most influential baseball book ever” (Rob Neyer, Slate) but also what “may be the best book ever written on business” (Weekly Standard).

Eleven Rings: The Soul of Success by Phil Jackson

During his storied career as head coach of the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers, Phil Jackson won more championships than any coach in the history of professional sports. Even more important, he succeeded in never wavering from coaching his way, from a place of deep values. Jackson was tagged as the “Zen master” half in jest by sportswriters, but the nickname speaks to an important truth: this is a coach who inspired, not goaded; who led by awakening and challenging the better angels of his players’ nature, not their egos, fear, or greed.

RUN TO DAYLIGHT! (Fireside Sports Classic) by Vince Lombardi

If pro football is warfare, then the battle is won or lost in the six days before Sunday. Written by legendary head coach Vince Lombardi, the book details a week in the Green Bay Packers’ 1962 championship season. Lombardi assesses the grit of players and coaches. A must read for all true fans of pro football. A sports classic.

The Inner Game of Tennis: The Classic Guide to the Mental Side of Peak Performance by W. Timothy Gallwey

The Inner Game of Tennis is a revolutionary program for overcoming the self-doubt, nervousness, and lapses of concentration that can keep a player from winning. Now available in a revised paperback edition, this classic bestseller can change the way the game of tennis is played.

Practical Modern Basketball (3rd Edition) Practical Modern Basketball (3rd Edition) by John R. Wooden and Bill Walton

Coach Wooden, more than anything else, is a teacher. Basketball just happens to be his subject. This book outlines a pattern, a theory, a strategy, and a course for how to develop as a basketball player and as a person. It organizes and dispenses the knowledge that Coach Wooden has accumulated over a lifetime in the game of basketball. It gives the reader an understanding of the delicate balance of the simple reality of the game and the incredibly demanding effort and dedication needed to master basketball. This timeless book will help everyone who is interested in improving their life and their basketball game. This book is so well thought out, well planned, well organized, and well written that it is perfectly applicable thirty-two years after its first publication. Reading it will make you feel like a member of the team.

Basketball, Multiple Offense and Defense (Hardcover) by Dean Smith

This book contains the secrets, strategies, and techniques that produced the greatest winning tradition in college basketball and will produce results and successes for coaches and players at all levels. This book is a brilliant distillation of the game. The reader will learn the thoughts, insights, techniques, and strategies that guided the University of North Carolina to victory after victory over a span of thirty years. This book is timeless, tested, and proven to be the playbook of a winning coach.

Effortless Mastery: Liberating the Master Musician Within (Book + CD set) by Kenny Werner

Paperback book and CD set. Effortless Mastery: Liberating the Master Musician Within is a book for any musician who finds themselves having reached a plateau in their development. Werner, a masterful jazz pianist in his own right, uses his own life story and experiences to explore the barriers to creativity and mastery of music, and in the process reveals that ”Mastery is available to everyone,” providing practical, detailed ways to move towards greater confidence and proficiency in any endeavor. While Werner is a musician, the concepts presented are for every profession or life-style where there is a need for free-flowing, effortless thinking.

The book also comes with an audio CD of meditations narrated by Kenny to help the musician reach a place of relaxed focus.

Zen in the Art of Archery by Eugen Herrigel

It is almost impossible to understand Zen by studying it as you would other intellectual pursuits. The best way to understand Zen is, simply, to Zen. This is what author Eugen Herrigel allows us to do by sharing his own fascinating journey toward a comprehension of this illuminating philosophy.

In Japan, an art such as archery is not practiced solely for utilitarian purposes such as learning to hit targets. Archery is also meant to train the mind and bring it into contact with the ultimate reality. If one really wishes to be master of an art, technical knowledge of it is not enough. One has to trancend technique so that the art becomes an “artless art” growing out of the Unconsciousness. In this way, as the author simply, clearly demonstrates, archery becomes a path to greater understanding and enlightenment.

This program is an outstanding way to experience Zen–and an intriguing, influential work of literature.

Free Play by Stephen Nachmanovitch

This book is about the inner sources of spontaneous creation. It is about where art in the widest sense comes from. It is about why we create and what we learn when we do. It is about the flow of unhindered creative energy: the joy of making art in all its varied forms.

Free Play is directed toward people in any field who want to contact, honor, and strengthen their own creative powers. It integrates material from a wide variety of sources among the arts, sciences, and spiritual traditions of humanity. Filled with unusual quotes, amusing and illuminating anecdotes, and original metaphors, it reveals how inspiration arises within us, how that inspiration may be blocked, derailed or obscured by certain unavoidable facts of life, and how finally it can be liberated – how we can be liberated – to speak or sing, write or paint, dance or play, with our own authentic voice.

Talent is Overrated by Geoffrey Colvin

Asked to explain why a few people truly excel, most people offer one of two answers. The first is hard work. Yet we all know plenty of hard workers who have been doing the same job for years or decades without becoming great. The other possibility is that the elite possess an innate talent for excelling in their field. We assume that Mozart was born with an astounding gift for music, and Warren Buffett carries a gene for brilliant investing. The trouble is, scientific evidence doesn’t support the notion that specific natural talents make great performers.


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From Coach:

My purpose in establishing Basketball Talk Pro is to provide an opportunity to pass on to other coaches (or prospective coaches) what I have learned after being in basketball almost 50 years.  

It is talk about coaching and playing based on my experience and the experience of other basketball people. Our mission is to help our coaching colleagues in entering and sustaining this wonderful but challenging profession.  

Coaching takes years of experience and study to reach a level of performance that can sustain a career.  We hope these sessions will help to do that.       

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