As NBA star Ray Allen goes for the all-time three-point record this Thursday, we take a look at the conditioning regimen that has kept Allen in the game over the years.
Back in 2007, the Boston Celtics strength and conditioning coaches, Walter Norton Jr. and Bryan Doo, worked overtime to get Ray Allen ready for 2007-'08 after he underwent double ankle surgery during the off-season. "We were concerned about getting his joints to move well again," says Norton, "as well as strengthening his lower body, from his ankle to his knee to his hip." Most athletes, the trainers say, tend to be quad-dominant, so they had Allen train with resistance bands to recruit his glutes when running or jumping.
"When he's on the court," says Doo, "we want him to use all his muscles, not just his quads." The bands also help Allen focus on proper mechanics. "In an effort to get him more explosive, we've had to try and teach him how to land all over again," says Norton. Allen performs nearly every exercise in an athletic position to simulate how his body moves on the hardwood.
He may have a band around his ankles or knees while squatting, lunging, or reaching.
"He'll train in shoes one day and bare feet the next to change the stimulus," Norton adds. Allen might stand on one foot while a staff member throws him medicine balls at different heights,allowing him to work on his balance.
"He has to use muscles in his core to slow the ball down," says Doo. This sort of functional training, combined with Allen's attitude, has kept him healthy and performing at a high level this season. "Ray is a pro," Norton says. "He definitely understands the value of what we do."