Your Author's Bio,
As I wrote this bio I remembered a couple things my grandmother told me...
She said, "Eric when you're old, all you have is your memories. It's like a locket you wear around your neck and can remember whenever you want. So make sure you create good memories to carry around with yourself for the rest of your life."
She also told me, "when you're 90 years old and on your death bed, do you want to say I lived life by all the rules or do you want to say I lived! ... I went for it!"
Well, here are some things I remembered from my athletic career...and yes I have several very exciting athletic memories, that many years later I still enjoy remembering and telling people about. And yes I went for it and continue to go for it. I hope you do too!
Here are the highlights:
I started out as a little skinny kid who just loved basketball. I loved playing basketball, I loved watching basketball, I loved reading about basketball, and I loved talking about basketball. Every spare minute I had was spent practicing or playing basketball. I literally spent from morning til night practicing and playing basketball. I remember many times shoveling snow off the court, playing in the rain, the dark, or playing when it's 100 degrees. There were several really cool college players in my area and I wanted to be just like them. With practice, improvement techniques, and growth, I eventually went on to pass up many, but not all, of my local childhood "idols." I went on to improve my jumping ability, skills and play enough that I earned college basketball scholarships and an overseas professional basketball contract.
Increased my vertical leap, primarily on my own from 16 to 23 inches
(7 inches) at age 14.
But, I also used a few tips I learned from a basketball skills record. We had
record players back then, we didn't have the Internet, computers, or instant
e-Book downloads. It was
about 25 years ago, or so. Shorts were still short, and we were still wearing Converse and Addidas
shoes back then.
Nike and Michael Jordan were still about 10 years into the future. Good
information was hard to find. A
person can get the best information almost instantaneously, now.
Increased my vertical leap from 23 to 31 (8 inches) with a
Repetitive Jump Program and Weights. I bought a couple programs out of
the Sporting News and Street & Smiths Basketball year books. They're not
selling the programs anymore but they were pretty good programs back then and
I give them a lot of credit. One of the programs that is sold today, one that
is highly advertised and is semi endorsed by a couple pro players, is
almost identical to a program that I bought about 20 years ago. That is pretty
scary considering that there have been no improvements and it still has just
one mode of improvement.
I first dunked when I was 5'9 & 135 lbs., and amazed coaches, friends, and
teammates, and especially my neighbor who was 6'6" and couldn't dunk. There
were quite a few jealous people around watching when I first did it in public!
Looking back, that is one of my fondest memories. I can still remember
their faces. On that account, I'd have to agree with my grandmother, it's great to have
exciting memories to look back on.
At age 36, I increased my vertical leap from 31 to 35
inches (4 inches) using a "True" Plyometrics program with principals developed
at Bob Gajda's Sport Performance Institute, an Olympic Decathlete
coach, plus a few training tips from a major college
high jumper's coach. This took about a year to accomplish, working out 1-2
times a week for a half hour on jumping, and doing my regular fitness weight
training workout and playing pick up basketball to stay in shape. It was well after
my basketball career was
over. Nonetheless, I was pretty excited about the increase because I had
thought I had hit a barrier or
plateau at a 31 inch vertical. If I were a young guy starting out today,
and knowing what I do now, I would go for a 40 inch vertical leap. I
believe that would have been possible over a few years combining methods from
package such as my "True" optimal Plyometrics methods, explosive power
training, and a few other secrets that I reveal in the package.
Imagine what you could do with a 40 inch vertical leap!
O.K., back to the 35 inch vertical. You can do some pretty crazy dunks with a 35 inch vertical!
I have this one insane dunk where I cuff the ball with one hand and
tuck it under my shirt in front of me (or under my shirt in back on a good
day) and pull it out and slam it, all without
traveling. Even today, as an older guy of 40, I can still do that one, too! I
still often surprise young guys 1/2 to 1/4 my age with that one! (Soon I'm
going to get some photos up on this site of some dunks me and my students do)
I'm also pretty excited because of the total increases made overall from a 16 to a 35 inch vertical leap. That's a 19 inch increase. Even if I add a few a few inches to the start height, let's say going from 20 to 35 is still a conservative 15 inches increase. And I believe I could have added a couple inches more if I kept going or started earlier. It's gratifying and exciting because many coaches told me I wasn't much of a natural athlete, which in retrospect was true. If I were a natural athlete I suppose I would of had a 35 inch vertical jump when I was a kid, without using any program at all. I took coaches negative comments as a challenge. I wish I knew this information about 25 years ago. Maybe I would have made the NBA and won 6 championships alongside Michael Jordan? John Paxson and Steve Kerr did it. Well, at least I get to pass this information on to you!
I had the unique and unusual fortune of going to 4 colleges in 5 years,
which in retrospect was a blessing and a learning experience. I had full basketball scholarships to two major
Division 1 universities, one in LA the other in Illinois. I met and made connections with many coaches, players, and trainers.
I learned many different ways of doing things; jumping, strength training, shooting, offense, defense, conditioning, drills etc. Additionally, I learned how to get along
with people, teamwork, leadership, and winning.
As I grew in high school, I went from very small and weak but somewhat speedy freshman to
a taller, more uncoordinated slower sophomore year. To say the least I wasn't a natural athlete at all.
I had to work hard for it. When I had a good game, headlines in my
hometown newspaper read "Big Dork Does OK." It wasn't funny to read
that back then, but it added
to my motivation to do better in sports, than just "ok." I knew I needed the
extra edge, information, and techniques to improve.
Some of the accolades and awards I earned: Was a high school all conference, all area basketball player. Was high school and college team MVP, high scorer, and high rebounder.
Was college all conference too.
I missed my entire junior high school basketball season with a back
injury from weight lifting. I went to the Sports Performance Institute and was
rehabilitated by the famous Bob Gajda, a former body building champion turned
sports performance guru and strength coach. He told me, "You want to play
basketball, I will have you playing basketball like never before." Although I
didn't realize it then, his techniques and tactics were completely high tech, right out of the Olympics strength department.
He also had me doing "True" Optimal Plyometrics, which I didn't realize the
amazing distinction until years later. He had me not only
rehabilitating but building strength, quickness and balance. He got me in shape,
and more, for a highly successful senior season. It didn't hurt that I grew 4
inches over the summer either!
Played in Chicago pro summer leagues against numerous college stars and
pro basketball players such as Glenn "Doc" Rivers, Terry Cummings, and Mark
Aguirre, as well as pre season practices in Los Angeles,
playing head to head against pros Magic Johnson, Michael Cooper, Kiki
Vanderweigh, and Darren Daye. Playing against and guarding Magic
Johnson is another great memory that I always enjoy thinking about. I even
scored the first shot I took against Magic! I've told that story about a
thousand times! People dig it! Remember....memories.
Currently I enjoy playing basketball and all sports, working out 4-5 times a
week with weights, running, reading and researching on sports performance,
sports, health, and self improvement. I'm a big Los Angeles Lakers, Chicago
Bulls and a fan of all Chicago and Los Angeles sports teams. I offer a
very unique and valuable perspective to the athlete, because of all the hard work, learning
and struggle I went through as an athlete myself. I like athletes, I was
an athlete and most of my friends are athletes. Athletes are good people. And today, most of all, I enjoy giving
athletes information to succeed in the fastest, easiest, most efficient way. I
enjoyed sharing "my story" with you. I care!
"Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed." Booker T. Washington