Kobe Bryant was truly a player apart, including during the offseasons. Following his first title with the Lakers, the back had thus undertaken a rather surprising activity during the summer… which nevertheless proved to be very useful thereafter.
If he spent 20 long years on the courts playing basketball, Kobe Bryant was more generally a big sports fan. Having lived for a time in Europe, especially in Italy, the former Laker was able to rub shoulders with other disciplines, such as football for example. As a real workaholic, he therefore set out to integrate certain routines from these sports into his own, in order to find new ways to train and progress.
All of this started very early on, a good example having been relayed by the five-time champion himself in his book Mamba Mentality. In 1999-00, LA emerged from what would be a three-peat’s first title. Not yet at the level of the legend he later became, Vino also ended the season with physical ankle problems. Not being able to test the swelling during the off-season, he had therefore decided to practice another discipline:
Kobe took to dancing after the 2000 Finals
Kobe Bryant on recovering from an ankle injury in the 2000 NBA Finals:
“I couldn’t hoop much that summer. What I did do, though, was take up tap dancing… I worked on it all that summer and benefited for the rest of my career.”
(via The Mamba Mentality Book) pic.twitter.com/9EntAHKn2F
— Legion Hoops (@LegionHoops) August 1, 2022
I couldn’t play much basketball that summer. What I did, however, was take up tap dancing…I worked on it all this summer and enjoyed it for the rest of my career.
For the trouble, the drastic change of sport practiced can raise eyebrows. It’s hard to see someone like the Black Mamba shining like this…and yet, it’s an approach that other basketball players have taken before him. We think in particular of Dirk Nowitzki, his personal coach Holger Geschwindner having also made him work on his dance steps as well as playing the saxophone. And when you look at it, the idea is quite brilliant.
Indeed, dancing requires extreme coordination and above all excellent footwork, qualities that are just as sought after in the world of the orange ball. Having been known for their impeccable fundamentals, KB24 was therefore not pulling that nowhere, and took advantage of this experience to improve a bit more technically. Unsurprisingly, fans of the late player loved this rather unusual anecdote about their favorite athlete:
That’s my goat 😤
— IG @otfwhodat⚜️ (@4pfwhodat) August 1, 2022
That’s my GOAT
Unable to play basketball, Kobe Bryant therefore decided to improve… by going dancing. You had to think about it! But above all, we would have liked to see videos of Vino practicing this new discipline.