YUCAIPA, Calif. – Yesterday I rode the stationary bike for 20 minutes and didn’t enjoy one minute of it. I also lifted weights and that wasn’t much fun either.
I needed to make a change in my stale fitness routine and today I did. I asked myself: “What do I really enjoy doing physically to stay in shape?” The answer came quick – basketball.
So today I went to the Redlands YMCA determined to spend at least an hour on the court. And except for three younger guys on the far court, I had an open court all to myself.
Some of you are probably thinking, “what fun is playing basketball, a team sport, all by yourself?”
Since I was a little kid living on a farm, there wasn’t a lot of kids around for pick-up games. So I played basketball alone, shooting under the yellow yard light off the garage, or in the haymow of our barn when part of the floor was cleared. During haying season, the haymow was full to the peak, so the yard light had to do.
But my point is, it has never bothered me to play basketball alone. As a kid, I would pretend I was Lakers star Jerry West or 76ers backcourt ace Hal Greer. I’d pretend I was taking the game winning shot with just second or two left on the clock.
I delighted in shooting jump shots, set shots, driving to the basket for layups. I delighted in the sound of the bouncing ball or seeing it drop through the basket; and on an especially good shot, the sound of “swish” when the ball hits nothing but net.
I was on the court for 1:05 hours today. Just me, the ball and the basket. It sure beats sitting on that stationary bike.
(I still play senior basketball at the Drayson Center in Loma Linda, Calif.)
To learn more about senior men’s basketball, visit: Masters Basketball Association