Communication in Basketball

Communication is a method in which we interact. It allows us to exchange information through several medium and methods. The dictionary defines it as a process in which we assign, conveys and relate different meaning in an effort to create, share and provide understanding among people. In accomplishing the process, a vast range of repertoire of skills is needed.
The skills required are listening, speaking, observing, analyzing, evaluating and inferring. The process is developmental and is applied and employed in different fields of every industry and areas of life.  At home, schools, community and at working areas, communication and proper mode of utilizing it is vital. With appropriate mode used in communication process, cooperation, unity and cohesiveness is attained as better understanding about different issues are obtained.
Communication comes in various forms. Depending on the situation we are into, the appropriate form of communication we need to employ for effective communication employ may vary. Various forms of communication may include verbal, non-verbal and written. These different forms of communication can all be observed in watching or playing sports and different games. In sports, these forms of communications are present and very visible.

Every sporting event and game requires teamwork; from the plays and strategies devised by the coaching staff during training camp up to its proper execution on the hard court or playing field. For teamwork to flourish with in the unit is necessary. Coaches often stress the importance of communication while inside the hard court and playing, many times in interviews conducted at post games they comment on the lack of communication that leads to failure to work as a team.
They point out that communication by the players and the coach can spell victory from the agony of defeat. Thus, keys that will propel teams to victory and eventually to greatness include proper communication. Perhaps among the sporting events which glued audience to the end of their seats and watched by millions across the world college hoops is one sport that highlight the significance of proper communication. The players, team officials and school alumni’s passion towards the sports are admirable and drive them to push harder and be victorious.
College hoops or the NCAA in particular conveys a lot of message to us. Through pod casts, radios and TV broadcast over satellites TV that reaches every part of the world, the NCAA communicates with us. Verbal communication is attained through the commentators and analysts who present the game to us.
Although communication is one way it is still considered communication since messages are conveyed and related to us and as a result we are able to fully become aware and understand the game; who is winning, how the game is being played, to which phase it is in favor and we are provided with in depth analysis. Although fans are located miles away across the globe, fans are still able to follow the performance of his favorite team. Thanks to the advent of technology as communication has been made possible to all parts of the globe at any given time.
The intensity of the game is passed to us as commentators, announcers, court side reporters and game analyst detailed their stories of every happening on and off the court. Play by play they dissect the game, how things have lead to something and the effect of the players every action. With microphones and other electronic devices sound and conversation are amplified that add color to the already intense game. As announcers announced “Blue Devils basketball!” or “and 1!” fans break into a wild frenzy and plunges and burst into euphoric celebration.
The written form of communication can be observed through the live coverage conducted by the giant networks. Audiences are furnished with information that updates them with every happening on the hard court. As a result, viewers are able to experience and grasp the real spirit and the electricity enveloping the stadiums. Scores are flashed in the TV screen together with the game clock and shot clock and allow us to track every detail that would account to the result of the game.
During pre-games and half time reports we are flooded with information as games statistics are displayed in our screens. Through these we are able to deeply understand the game, how and why our favorite team is down and loosing, what is needed to overcome the deficit and eventually win, how can  “Mayo”  be neutralized and what does “Beasley” needs to do in the offensive and defensive end. Experts are able to relay us important keys needed to be accomplished to win.
After games, we are able to communicate directly to players as their thoughts are revealed during post game interviews. Written reports are also published in newspapers together with box scores. Through this writings messages are given and messages are passed. Thus they are considered form of communication.
If various forms of communication are already observed and present from network’s live coverage and outside the playing venues, more modes of communications are observed with in the venue and the live game itself. We can start our discussion from the array of strategies each school employs. In order t o win a ballgame a magnificent game plan must first be concocted and devised. Devising it will fall on the hands of the coaching staff, scouts and consultants.
With a game plan that able to maximize the teams strength and exploits the opponents weaknesses and liabilities, the only that would hinder and stall the team’s victory is its execution. In execution, coaches converse and discuss game plans to their ace and dependable players. They talk and interact in a manner in which both parties would understand and what each of them wants to do.
They exchange information. The coaches tell the players what they think is necessary to do and order their players to accomplish it. The players on the other hand try to do it and then relate to his coach the changes that might be necessary to adapt in order for the plan to be more effective. The end result then is a much better strategy as coaches performed major and small adjustments. These adjustments can then be the difference in a ballgame.
Used of verbal communication is not limited to coaches as the players in the court need to communicate as well with each other. Plays are called and players and staffs designed code names for them, so that only players from their side would know what play will be in the offing. They refer to the pick and roll with other names, the isolations and post ups with other codes.
Other teams are then led to confusion as terms with different meaning are made to mean something. Opposing teams are left guessing in trying to anticipate actions that would be done by their rivals. As long as every individual that is part of the team fully understand the description of each secret code and identify its correct message, communication among them would be effective.
Spectators also display oral communication as they react from astonishing and poor plays. They also tend to argue with bad calls. They shout on top of their lungs to express how the play has been magnificent and show their support by screaming “DEFENSE!”. Referees and committee officials also talk among each others to ensure that calls and judgment conform with each other’s decision.
In terms of the written form of communication, committee officials adapt the use of these system as signs are raised that would indicate if teams are on penalty, the number of personal fouls and who’s possession the ball would be. In return delays are avoided from happening that may arise from confusions in the fast pace tempo of the game.
Fans keep track of the scores from the giant electronic scoreboard that also shows the period and time remaining. It contains all sorts of information that would remind the players and the spectators of everything about the game. Posters, slogans and banners are also a mean of communication that can be observed in a basketball game. As a method of showing their support faniacs ( fan and maniacs alike) raised and lift banners that contain catchy praise that either showed unwavering support to the team or leave opposing team irritated.
In terms of non-verbal form of communication that is present through out the duration of the ball game, there are lots that can be observed. Rules and regulations that are implemented in a basketball game rely heavily on the use of signs. They are expressed mainly through the use of signs that have come to be identified with basketball. Violations such as traveling, dribbling infraction, fouls and goal tending are expressed through the different combination of hands and arms movement. With these various motions of the hands and body movement, a call is identified.
Thus, before someone or in order for anyone to play the game to this high level, he must know and understand the sign and language of the sports. Calls that are made are evaluated through these signs such as arms at crossed which means a substitution is being prepped up and closed fists which indicate that someone committed a foul. Through this, fans and viewers in the boob tube can readily recognize the call that was made. Furthermore, referees also used hand signals and gestures to report to the technical committee those who have made the infraction by signaling the player’s jersey number.
Clapping is also a sign of non-verbal communication displayed at games. Spectators cheered for exciting plays, pair of crucial free throws that are made and defensive gem performed by their team, supporters clapped and give each others high fives. Players and coaches also employed non-verbal communication by tapping their heads, crossing their fingers or pulling up the upper portion of their jersey. They can also raise their hand and their arms to indicate plays. They use it as a cover up to prevent opponents from reading their attacks.
Communication in the game of basketball is very important. Proper communication makes things better. Verbal, written and non verbal communication are all present in the game and the lack of any one of these can spell the doom to a team. Sports are perfect microcosms of life and if communication can lead to a team’s downfall improper communication also have adverse effect into the different areas of life.
Reference
Werner, S. (1979) Communication Theories: Origins, Methods, Uses. New York: Hasting House

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