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ESPN has a new feature on Steph Curry, loaded with behind-the-scenes details on how he trains. One regimen, in particular, will blow your mind.
ESPN rolled out an incredible new in-depth feature on Steph Curry today. The piece, by David Fleming, is framed around his quest to pass Ray Allen for the most 3-pointers made in NBA history. But the feature is loaded with context — the details of Curry’s life and career arc that have made him such a devastating shooter, how the Warriors offense functions around him and how he keeps his body in shape for the nightly grind of running off a thousand screens with a defense completely focused on stopping him.
The feature is packed with mind-bending anecdotes about Curry’s conditioning and different training regimens but one, in particular, will take your breath away. It’s how Curry makes sure no one can ever take his breath away:
“As the ball changes hands at the top of the key, Curry, in the right corner, does something counterintuitive, something he hasn’t done the entire possession. He stands still. Curry’s second wind comes from his ability to rapidly lower his heart rate during short breaks, even in the middle of games. It’s something he trains his body to do. Once he’s out of breath at the end of most workouts, Curry lies on his back, and Payne, his trainer, places sandbag weights below his rib cage in order to overload, and train, Curry’s diaphragm.
Through conditioning and breathing techniques like this, Curry can often coax his heart rate below 80 during one 90-second timeout.”
How does slowing his breathing help Stephen Curry create space from defenders?
This anecdote is incredible, both the functional training aspect — overloading his abdomen with sandbags while he tries to catch his breath at the end of a workout — and the specific scenario and advantage it targets. Catching his breath in these tiny windows gives him an edge when play and movement resumes, and he’s back to sprinting through a maze of picks trying to leave his defender behind.
Steph Curry is an outlier in so, so many ways and this is just another great example of all the ways he’s separating himself from the field.