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Upper Hand

Sports Management Blog

3 Keys to Your Best Sports Business Budget

on Sep 29, 2015 9:30:27 AM | By Upper Hand | 0 Comments
Have you ever wanted a simple excel template to budget for your sports business? A budget projection that provides the basics like revenue and expense estimates so you can arrive at projected profitability? Upper Hand is pleased to offer you a customizable free sports business budget template, to help you do exactly that! Our free budget template was put together with the help of a national facility franchise and contains additional input from our customer’s feedback. 
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on Nov 5, 2014 1:55:22 AM | By Upper Hand | 0 Comments
In the 1st post in this series, we discussed the importance of post-season complete rest, post-season active rest and having a Skill Development Plan to become a better player in 2015. As you sit down to formulate your Skill Development plan be as specific as you can be. For example, it is common for QBs to be told, "Improve your footwork and throwing mechanics". Ok, there are a 1,000 footwork drills and there are a 1,000 throwing drills. How do you know which one to use? Which ones will help you in 2015? The answer is depends. What do you need your feet do? What part of your throwing mechanics need to improve? Ball hold and security? Vertical L? Horizontal L? Wrist Positioning? Extension? Elbow location pre-release? This may seem hard to do at first. But dig deep because the effort is worth the reward. And keep in mind, generally, if you ask good questions, you will arrive at good answers! These "good" answers will give you the context needed to judge whether or not a given drill will help you achieve your 2015 Skill development goals. At the Fairfax Football Academy, for example, when it comes to footwork, we focus on 3 things: 1. Weight distribution during movement 2. One piece foot movement 3. Ending all movements with an efficient throwing base. No matter how good a footwork drill appears to be, if it does not help our QBs get better at the things outlined above, we do not do it. You can begin your assault on the 2015 Season by joining us Joining us on November 29th-30th:  REGISTRATION FOR FUTURE STARS QB CLINIC
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Healthy Snack Ideas for your Athlete

on Jun 23, 2014 7:23:45 PM | By Upper Hand | 0 Comments
Sports can take a lot out of your athlete so it is really important to keep your kids well fueled with nutritious snacks. The below pre and post-game healthy snack ideas will help your kids stay energized all day and will help you avoid having to feed them junk food from the concession stand. 1. Fruit Cones Ingredients: Ice Cream Cones, Mixed Fruit, Yogurt Cut the fruits of your choice up into bite size pieces. Take your ice cream cone and put in a layer of your fixed fruit, then a spoonful of yogurt, then another layer of fruit and continue until you end with a layer of fruit at the top of your cone. Chill cones until you are ready to serve.
Topics: Youth Athletics
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The NBA is Back!

on Nov 5, 2013 11:54:26 AM | By Upper Hand | 0 Comments
With an eventful World Series behind us and football in full swing, the NBA is back! This off season didn’t have a lack of headlines. From CP3 committing to LA, to Dwight’s decision to dump LA, to Derrick Rose’s #return (again), to future hall of famers making a new home in Brooklyn, to the Cavs shocking draft… 2013-2014 will certainly not disappoint. Here’s how we feel this season will shake up. In the East: Chicago Bulls - With DRose now healthy, this is the best overall team in the league. The balance of speed, defense, size, depth, and experience, gives the Bulls the best shot at the #1 seed and home court in the playoffs. Miami Heat - Why aren’t they a number 1 you ask? If the Heat are smart, they will rest Wade for 10-15 games in the regular season to prep for the playoffs. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Greg Oden should give the team some much needed bulk down low… if he can make it to December. Brooklyn Nets - KG, Joe Johnson, Darren Williams, Brook Lopez, and Paul Pierce offer the best starting 5 in the NBA. Not much depth behind them but should be enough talent to make some noise throughout the year and in the playoffs. KG will also teach Lopez what it takes to be a “great” player in the NBA… not just a “good” player. Indiana Pacers - Granger’s injury seems to be lingering but this tough squad did make huge leaps last season in the right direction but the east is very deep. No one will want to play them in the playoffs. Their size is second to none and Paul George is poised to be a true superstar. New York Knicks - Didn’t do much to change their roster from last year and Melo already is talking free agency. Don’t see much happning at the Garden this winter. Cleveland Cavs - Kyrie is a superstar and ready to prove it. Detroit Pistons - Surprise Team of the year! New look with Brandon Jennings, Josh Smith, Greg Monroe and a deep bench will keep them in games all year long. Atlanta Hawks - Paul Milsap and Al Horford should make up for a challenging low post presence for any team in the east. Guard play is questionable… First Round: Bulls beat Hawks, Heat beat Detroit, Nets beat Cavs, Pacers beat Knicks Second Round: Nets beat Bulls, Heat beat Pacers Conference Finals: Heat beat Nets In the West: LA Clippers - There are very few coaches in the NBA that can make a real impact in their first year… Doc Rivers is one of the few. Chris Paul decided to stay to end the curse of Clippers and raise the first ever banner for this franchise. Memphis Grizzlies - Mike Conley will lead this talented team to the best record in the west. Golden State - Healthy David Lee, Andre Iguadola, Bogut, and Stephen Curry are ready to make a run at a title. San Antonio - They just win. Oklahoma City - Westbrook and Durant are super stars but have zero help around them. Watch for a mid season trade to improve their line up. Houston Rockets - It’s Dwight’s time to shine. Young and athletic but do they have enough to compete in the west? We saw what Dwight did in Orlando with no one around him… enter… James Harden Utah Jazz - Will win games simply because of their strong home court advantage. One or two players away from being a powerhouse. Dallas Mavericks - Simply because I don’t like the playoffs without Dirk in them. First round: Clippers beat Mavs, Grizzlies beat Jazz, Rockets shock Golden State, OKC beat Spurs Second Round: Rockets beat Grizzlies, OKC beats Clippers Conference Finals: Rockets beat OKC Finals: Heat beat Rockets MVP: Lebron James Comeback Player: Greg Oden Coach of the Year: Jason Kidd Defensive Player of the year: Dwight Howard Rookie of the Year: Victor Oladipo Most Improved: Eric Bledsoe Written By: Jeremy Clouse
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In Leadership Experience is Key

on May 20, 2013 2:51:23 PM | By Upper Hand | 0 Comments
If you’ve followed our blog, one thing that you’ve noticed is our fascination with the subject of leadership. For today, let’s take a look at a how you can become a better leader. Sure, there are tons of books, classes, articles, blogs, etc. that are available for you to hone your leadership skills, but there is no mistaking the best teacher for you to become a better leader -> experience. When it comes to learning to lead, experience is what will teach us the most. In leadership experience is key. When you are inexperienced in any field, typically what happens is you will fail or get tripped up in the process of gaining experience and knowledge. So, really the purpose of this is to point out a few “ah-ha” moments along the road to learning about leadership to help you avoid some frustrating moments…if you find this helpful, pass this on to others to help them in their journey and let us know if there are other truths that you have discovered along your journey. (1)  Take care in the building and advancing of your team. Having a high performing team, whether in business, sports, etc., is all about having the right team assembled and then having each member of that team in the right role. Take time initially putting together and building your team. When it is time to add new team members, do it methodically and thoughtfully. Additionally, as there are new roles available on your team (captain, manager, etc.) make sure you are promoting quickly. If you make a bad choice, which you will, correct it as quickly as possible. (2)  Not only should you listen to your team’s feedback, but you should do everything in your power to promote your team sharing feedback (constructively). You won’t use all the feedback you receive, however, this is valuable data on yourself to collect and reflect on. Leadership is not stagnant it is fluid and you must be willing to change or tweak your style should it become necessary. (3)  Recognize and never forget that everyone on your team is watching, observing and judging you. Everyone has different qualities or character traits that they find important in their leader. One thing that everyone can align on is that they don’t want to follow someone who is not credible. If what you are doing does not match what you are asking of your team, you will lose credibility and your team. Your actions as a leader must always match up with your words. 24-7-365 you are being observed; there is no quicker way to lose your team than to lose credibility. (4)  As a leader oftentimes the impulse is to talk when in reality, you should be listening. (5)  Questions are far more powerful than command. A great leader can have a discussion with one of their team members and through conversation and questioning can lead that team member to the answer or command without directly commanding them to do so. It is an art, but work on helping your people come to the right conclusion themselves as opposed to always having to command them to do things. (6)  Finally and most importantly, this job…being a leader…is about the people. At the end of the day, people are all that we have between success and failure. You must truly enjoy people and working with them to help them succeed and develop. Pay attention to your team, show interest in them personally and professionally and build them up. This will be a key step to your success as a leader. We hope the above help you in your never-ending quest to becoming a great leader. Ultimately no course, book or blog is going to be a substitute for experience. You will trip along the way, but you will be better for it! Written By: Eric Blumenthal
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Offseason Workout for Basketball Players

on May 4, 2013 3:39:41 PM | By Upper Hand | 0 Comments
Basketball season is winding down and many of you ballers are in your off-season now. Other than enjoying the NBA Playoffs, what are you doing to take your game to the next level? First thing you should do is look to connect to one of TRAINlete’s GREAT Private Sports Trainers. Second, you need to check out the below workout. This will give you an incredible workout designed to improve your vertical, speed and endurance. Much of this was taken from the explosive Nate Robinson. If you aren’t familiar with Nate, he is a 5”8 baller who has won the NBA Slam Dunk Contest…twice. He is able to play with and against players more than a foot taller than him solely because his athleticism, explosiveness and leaping ability. Get after it during this offseason! Time: 45 minutes Duration: Once or Twice a week Focus Muscles: quads, glutes, calves, core Leaping ability isn’t all about squats.  If you want to get to truly above the rim next year, focus on working your core along with your legs to get maximum results.  This the work out below for 5 weeks and soar above the competition next season! Key is to write it down and keep a journal so you can improve every week. -Needless to say…. Start with a 5-minute stretch -Jump Rope 200 times (increase foot speed and fast twitch muscles) -Leg Curls (2 sets of 10) and in between sets hold yourself in plank position for 1 minute -30 Squat Jumps (no weights, height is key) -Leg Extension (2 sets of 10) and in between sets hold yourself in plank position for 1 minute -Dumbbell Lunges w/ weights 10x’s each leg (should start to struggle at 8) -Jump Rope 200 times -20 High knee-raise sprint (Sprint the length of a basketball court staying on your toes and lifting your knees as high as possible.) -Shoot 5 sets of 10 Free Throws
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The Disappointment of Lance Armstrong

on Feb 21, 2013 7:58:53 AM | By Upper Hand | 0 Comments
Lance Armstrong
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When one door closes, another door opens

on Feb 15, 2013 1:09:02 PM | By Upper Hand | 0 Comments
Have you ever heard the saying "when one door closes, another door opens"? Most people have. This quote is actually a part of the full quote by Alexander Graham Bell. The full quote is: "When one door closes another door opens; but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us."
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Indiana Hoosier Basketball

on Feb 7, 2013 4:50:42 PM | By Upper Hand | 0 Comments
I am an Indiana Hoosier basketball fan. I am a fan of history, legacy and greatness. After watching Indiana and Michigan play each other on Saturday night, I can’t help but see all the good things going on with Indiana basketball.  Assembly hall was on their feet, the team was playing with high intensity, and the players were showing their will to win.  They ended up knocking off number 1 ranked Michigan, 81-73. Indiana basketball is a team full of tradition and history. They have had many great players come through the program including: Isiah Thomas, Steve Alford, A.J Guyton, and Jared Jefferies.  Also, they had one of the most famous college basketball coaches ever, Bob Knight, coach there.  He coached from 1971-2000.  While he was there he lead the team to 3 national championships.  Bob Knight’s 1976 team remains the last unbeaten team in college basketball, finishing with a (32-0) record. Their current coach, Tom Crean, has been coaching at Indiana since 2008.  He inherited a weak team at the start of his Indiana career.  His first 3 seasons with the Indiana Hoosiers were terrible, including their worst record ever (6-25).  With his hard work ethic and great coaching ability, he has turned the Indiana basketball program completely around.  They are now one of the toughest contenders in the country, and they have earned their number 1 ranking in college basketball.  Currently they are (20-2), and their only two losses have come at the hands of Butler and Wisconsin. The Hoosiers have a very tough schedule throughout the rest of the season.  5 out their 9 games left will be against ranked opponents.  It is great to see Indiana back atop the world of College Basketball, it just feels better when The Hoosiers are a contender! #TeamTRAINlete “ Like” us on Facebook and “ Follow” us on Twitter Are you a private sports coach looking to increase your business? Sign up here.
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Sun Tzu: Every Battle is Won or Lost Before it is Fought.

on Feb 4, 2013 8:57:07 AM | By Upper Hand | 0 Comments
 Are you all familiar with Sun Tzu? If not, he was an ancient Chinese military general who was born around 550BC. He was also an incredible strategist and philosopher who is credited as the author of the famous book The Art of War, an influential Chinese book on military strategy. So why discuss an ancient Chinese general/philosopher who was born some 2,500 years ago? Well, quite frankly, his philosophy is brilliant and timeless. Let’s take one of the chapters from The Art of War:
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