Does Basketball Build Muscle? (Must Read!)

Does Basketball Build Muscle? (Must Read!)

Despite being one of the most popular sports globally, basketball does not provide significant muscle-building benefits. Resistance training is the most efficient way to build muscle. Basketball does not provide this because you are not lifting weights or applying resistance. Basketball is a lower-body dominant sport as you will be running and jumping the majority of the time. 

Does Basketball Build Muscle?

The First Reason You May Not Be Seeing Gains Is You Are Not Doing The Right Type Of Exercise! Basketball is a great sport. It’s fun, easy to learn, requires very little equipment, and is an excellent way to spend a few hours with your friends or family.

Unfortunately, spending hours playing basketball will not result in significant muscle development. This is because resistance training is the most efficient way to increase muscle size and strength. What you should be doing instead of playing basketball is performing resistance exercises three times per week. These exercises should include the major muscle groups of your body.

Your two most prominent muscle groups are your legs and your back. You also have smaller muscle groups like your chest, shoulders, arms, and abdomen. Any exercise that targets all these muscle groups is known as full-body exercise. There are many different types of full-body exercises. Some of them are pushups, pullups, jumping jacks, lunges, and running in place.

Whatever type of exercise you choose to do, make sure it is one that you find fun! If you find the exercise tedious, you won’t do it regularly and will not see any significant results. Choose an exercise you can do for 20-minutes or less, and you will enjoy the benefits for the rest of your life. Doing resistance exercise regularly will have a significant effect on your body composition.

Basketball and Muscle

Basketball is a game of inches. It’s tough to gain a significant amount of muscle mass while playing basketball. If you play basketball seriously (as most people who play basketball are), you will lose muscle mass. This is because resistance training is necessary to prevent muscle loss and promote muscle growth. There are two primary reasons people get muscular: resistance exercise and a high-protein diet.

When you eat more protein, your body breaks it down into amino acids, which build new muscle tissue. If you want to get lean and cut up, you have to severely restrict your calories and take in almost no protein at all.

On the other hand, most people who get muscular do not do resistance training. This is because it is complicated to perform strength training exercises when you are playing basketball. Also, most muscular people do not realize the adverse effects that having too much muscle will have on their health. Let’s examine this issue from two angles: Angle #1:

Building Muscle for Basketball

Players Professional basketball players need more muscle than other athletes because of the rigors of the game. They must be able to run up and down the court, jump as high as possible and shoot baskets with incredible accuracy.

These are very demanding tasks for an athlete and, if he doesn’t have enough muscle, he will fatigue very quickly and will not be able to perform at his best. Therefore, a pro basketball player needs to build more muscle mass than other athletes to perform at his peak throughout the entire game. 

This is also true for amateur players. Even though an amateur may not have the physical conditioning of a pro, he still needs to develop as much muscle as possible to have an advantage over his opponent. 

The reason is simple: When you are playing one-on-one, or in a small group, your opponent can only use bodyweight and skill to defeat you. However, if he has more muscle mass and greater strength, he can use that to his advantage and overpower you. So, if you want to play pro basketball or play it better, you need to pack on as much lean muscle mass as possible.

Can playing basketball kill my muscle gains? 

Yes, it will. However, it will not immediately. It will slow down your muscle growth for a little while. But, in time, your desire to build muscle will be so great that you will start basketball training even during the season when you are not playing the game.

This will cause you to put on so much lean muscle mass that your body will become “muscle-bound.” This is a situation where your body is so used to building muscle that it will continue to do so even when you are not working out.

Will I build muscle by playing basketball every day for 1-2 hours? 

No, this is not how you will gain the maximum amount of muscle mass. Playing basketball for such a long period will prevent you from building as much muscle as you could. Basketball is not a sport where you can build muscle mass very easily.

Muscle is built during resistance exercise (like lifting weights). During a basketball game, you are constantly engaged in high-intensity activities, which depletes your available energy and prevents you from engaging in any type of significant muscle-building activity. 

Is shooting a basketball more difficult when you’re stronger?

Initially, you will feel that it is more difficult to shoot a basketball when you are stronger because your body is not used to all the new strength you have acquired. However, this feeling will quickly disappear because your new strength will make the basketball go almost every time. You will soon realize that the only real factor affecting your shooting ability is the form and mechanics of your shot. 


Does basketball build muscle? No, the game of basketball itself does not build muscle because it does not have any resistance training in it. However, if you combine playing basketball with lifting weights, then you will definitely develop more lean muscle mass than someone who only plays basketball. Also, you will become much more athletic and be able to perform at a much higher level in all sports.

But remember this: Muscular development is only one part of becoming a great all-around athlete. You also need to work on your cardiovascular endurance, agility, speed, and many other skills. The best way to improve in all these areas is by doing cross-training with something else besides basketball.