Home Blog Basketball Article
Questions? Call us! 1-800-406-3926

NBC Camps Blog

September 12, 2019   |   Tagged Motivation

Key Ways a Positive Mental Attitude Will Help You Achieve in Basketball

Positive mental attitude basketball camps nbc

How's your PMA? is a key question coaches ask campers at NBC.

“Be careful how you think; your life is shaped by your thoughts.” Proverbs 4:23

PMA stands for Positive Mental Attitude and has been a cornerstone of teaching at NBC Camps for almost 50 years ago. Many years ago, there was many theories on success and the best way to live but very little scientific proof on what was truly the most effective. Some people believed the mental attitude part of sports was a waste of time. NBC founder Fred Crowell would hear from dissenters that they loved the workouts on the court but the time to talk about the mental aspect of the game was, for them, pointless.

Now, thanks to the golden age of research, campers and parents don’t have to just take our word for what works. PMA or positive mental attitudes has been discovered by researchers to be the game changer for teams, programs, coaches, players, leaders, businesses, and schools. Positive people are more successful, healthier, have better relationships, and live longer than their negative peers. A positive attitude toward a task influences how long a person will work without quitting or experiencing anger/frustration. A positive attitude towards others determines how meaningful and healthy these relationships will be. Take a look at your PMA and see what positive changes occur when you increase your positive mental attitude.

Key Ways a Positive Attitude Can Help You this Basketball Season

Mentally set your intentions for practice and games before you step on the court. Your will is your roadmap for your emotions and actions. Your will makes life happen. Don’t allow your emotions or your daily circumstances decide your life. Set your intentions beforehand.

Your mind sets the goals that your body obeys. Your body needs to obey your mind. Otherwise, your body will quit long before it should. As with all maxims, wisdom is needed. If you don’t listen to your body, you can get injured. Know yourself. Are you too soft on yourself or too hard? Balance this with your mental attitude.

Your inner dialogue on the court tells you so much about the quality of player you are. Try and notice what kind of thoughts race through your head. Your thoughts should be powerful and positive. Avoid any thought of trying to prove yourself or attract the attention of the coach or the crowd. Avoid any negative thinking toward yourself or your team. When you are in a negative mindset, mistakes ensue.

Comparison robs everyone. Don’t judge yourself against siblings or teammates. If comparison robs your energy to become better, stop comparing.

Don’t talk about your skills or have your parents talk about your skills. When parents start to brag about your skill set, you are setting yourself up for failure.


Dr. Martin Seligman, leading researcher on learned helplessness, has found how negativity leads to depression and a feeling of apathy. When we are in this helpless frame of mind, creativity stops, initiative stops, problem solving stops, and we start to shut down. This kind of passivity and negative override will move into a thinking style with clear three categories:

Personal, pervasive and permanent.

Learned Helplessness makes crisis and difficulty personal
If a student begins to start having a negative experience in school with someone that is being a bully, he or she can start to personalize what the bully is saying and start to believe it. He or she cannot reason that the bully has chosen to be cruel and is just looking for anyone to listen. Instead, this student internalizes what the bully is saying and makes the words personal.

Learned Helplessness makes the difficult words or situation feel pervasive
Next, after personalizing the words, the person extends to believing that everyone sees this person this way. If the bully is the coach, a player can personalize by saying I will never be a good player, and then make it pervasive by saying no coach will believe I am a good player.

Learned Helplessness makes this thinking style permanent
Finally, the thinking becomes permanent and the student believes there is nothing that can be done to alter his or her experience. This learned-helplessness is how people move toward depression, and other extreme self-destructive measures or attitudes.

You can change this learned helplessness thinking by a decision of your will to adopt a positive mental attitude. How you view yourself matters. If you believe you are miracle, unique and deeply loved, this now becomes your principle foundation for all other thinking. Negative comments or situations no longer become personal or because “I am a bad person”. When you live from a sense of deepest worth regardless of what you do, then no one or no situation can take away you.

About NBC Basketball
NBC Basketball offers intensive basketball training at camps, academies, clinics, holiday hoop camps, travel teams, pure shooting camps, and more. NBC stands for Nothing Beats Commitment and the mission to help athletes get better on and off the court. For more information about NBC Basketball visit www.nbccamps.com.

Share This

Find a camp that's right for you:

Get into camp!

If you need more assistance, just give us a call
at 1-800-406-3926 we would be happy to help!

close