By: Jeremy Brown (Treadstone Defensive Tactics)


I watched a professional pianist practice once. The thing I remember most, was the fact that he spent close to 3 minutes hitting the exact same key over and over and then he spent close to 10 minutes playing one of the most basic finger exercises. He told me that he was not satisfied, because he wanted to hit each key with the exact same precision as the previous one.

This is one of the big differences that I have seen between professionals and enthusiasts. The professional has this ability to spend countless hours working on the basics. It is easy to get bored with the basics and to want to rush ahead to the “fun” stuff. However, the basics are the foundation to everything else we do.  There is a time and place for the more complex (“fun”) items but if we do not keep up our basics, if we only train for fun, if we easily get bored we are only hurting our progress.

Here are my tips on how to train like a professional:


  • Devote more time on the basics
  • Deliberate practice is key and will help with the above.  Don’t take a shotgun approach to training but rather be specific in your training.
  • Prepare yourself psychologically. Instead of dreading the basic, focus on the task at hand: Making yourself better.

Practical Application:

  • Shadowbox your fundamentals.  (Read my ProTip on Shadowboxing for a more indepth explanation).
  • Write out or simply jot down a training plan before beginning your training session. (Ex: Today I want to improve on “such” and “such” and I will use these drills to do it.)
  • Try to focus on 1 to 2 elements that you want to improve
  • Plan for the long game.  Don’t rush, be patient, and be persistent
  • Vary up your speed.  Spend more time with slow and smooth but don’t neglect fast and explosive from time to time.
  • Video yourself training.  This can be hard for a lot of people.  We are embarrassed to watch ourselves (we usually are our toughest critics).  However, it is such a great training tool. 
  • Don’t fear failure. We should get to the point that we push ourselves to failure. Not with every rep but if we fear failure we will plateau and never reach our optimum potential. 

If you implement these simple tips you will get a better ROI on your training. Train Hard and be Safe