Elena Delle Donne on Her Basketball Preparation

The professional hooper discusses how she prepares for practices and training while balancing recovery with these basketball tips.

Becoming an elite basketball player takes time, patience and, of course, practice. Working on your skills and fundamentals can help you achieve your goals on the court. Honing your skills can also keep you disciplined with a solid work ethic.

With training comes preparation. Getting yourself prepared is key in basketball. Studying your playbook. Watching film on your opponents. Practicing one-on-one with teammates. These are all different ways you can prepare yourself to make an impact on the hardwood.

Elena Delle Donne knows all about preparation. The champion guard and forward credits her success to her hard work on and off the court. She says she divides her time between the gym, the court and even taking moments where she steps away from the game to relax.

“I spent a lot of time in the gym just playing one-on-one, especially, like, with my brother I would always have him try to guard me and challenge me in different ways,” she says. “And then, I worked a lot on my one-on-one skills.”


You have to find the right balance between working hard and recovering. Pushing yourself beyond your limits can negatively impact your game. Delle Donne says mental preparation is just as important as physical preparation.

“I know ways to kind of just, you know, get away from the game and relax and meditate. So, I wish my 17-year-old self knew how to take that mental break,” Delle Donne says.

Taking a break from basketball and taking care of your body can help rejuvenate you and get you energized for your next workout or game. Remember to listen to your body and avoid overexerting yourself.

Use these tips on preparation before your next game or practice to help you achieve your basketball goals.

Looking for more tips from professional basketball players? Jewell Loyd gets candid about how to be confident in your own skin and own your unique characteristics with her advice to young female athletes.