Yoga, Weights & Basketball

The Metta World Peace/Ron Artest Offseason Workout

Yoga, Weights & Basketball - The Metta World Peace/Ron Artest Offseason Workout
Although it was 14 years in the making, the ghost of Frederic Weis will finally be exorcised at Madison Square Garden come the fall. Making up for a first round blunder in the 1999 NBA Draft, the New York Knicks have welcomed Metta World Peace – known at the time as Ron Artest – back into the city he was born in.

Yoga, Weights & Basketball - The Metta World Peace/Ron Artest Offseason WorkoutAt 33 years of age, the forward out of St. John’s University is now an NBA veteran and brings a lot of intensity to the Knicks, a trait that they sorely lacked on the defensive side of the ball. This all became possible when the Los Angeles Lakers released him through the league’s amnesty program after the 6’7”, 260-pound World Peace averaged 12.4 points and 5.0 rebounds per game for them this past season.

Yoga, Weights & Basketball - The Metta World Peace/Ron Artest Offseason WorkoutTo stay in the type of condition that he has throughout his career, World Peace has always maintained a strict offseason training program that keeps him on top of his game and stronger as the season approaches:

*REST PERIOD – a two-week recovery following the NBA season
*3 WEEKS – of single daily workouts four times per week
*2 WEEKS – two daily workouts, every other day
*2 WEEKS – four daily workouts, every day

“In the morning, I’ll do some ball handling, shooting and post-ups for about an hour and 15 minutes,” he says. “The later on, I’ll lift some weights. In the afternoon, I’ll swim for about a half an hour. Lastly, I’ll play some full court basketball.

“Some days, I’ll substitute the weight training for agility drills like jumping jacks with a lot of flexing, stretching and even yoga.”


Chest –
1 – flat bench barbell or dumbbell presses (3 sets/10 reps)
2 – push-ups (3 sets, 10 reps)

Triceps –
1 – push downs (2 sets/10 reps)

Shoulders –
1 – front dumbbell or machine lateral raises (3 sets/10 reps)
2 – side dumbbell or machine lateral raises (3 sets/10 reps)

Biceps –
1- dumbbell or machine curls (3 sets/10 reps)

Back –
1 – back extension machine (3 sets/10 reps)

Legs –
1 – leg extensions (warm-up, a few light sets)
2 – leg presses (3 sets, varying reps)
3 – squats (3 sets, varying reps)

“A lot of people forget about their legs,” World Peace says, “but that’s where you get your power from.” Regarding squats, he says, “I can do 225 pounds for 10 reps and then 315 pounds for four to six reps. I max out for one rep with 405 pounds.”

Earlier in his career, World Peace squatted heavier weight like the above, but has kept his highest at 225 pounds the last few years. It is similar thinking that made him implement precautionary measures into his training repertoire to limit injuries and stay on the court.

“The muscles around my knees are healthy,” explains World Peace. “I do agility drills – the same type of things that I’m doing in a game. I keep all the leg muscles strong. My quads, hamstrings and calves.”

This is where doing unconventional training such as yoga can make such a big difference. With limbs as long as the ones World Peace posses, proper stretching and strengthening of the surrounding muscles will help those achy joints, the type that are commonplace in basketball.

Judging by the Knicks recent track record signing veteran frontcourt players, World Peace is either going to become another one of the walking wounded or finally break the trend. Big men such as Kenyon Martin, Rasheed Wallace and Marcus Camby all had their injury issues and the team is overdue to hit the jackpot with one sooner than later.

Welcome home, Ron…we mean Metta.

Photos By Per Bernal

Joe Pietaro

Online Editor-in-Chief, Fitness RX For Men

Contributing Editor, Muscular Development

Co-host, FitnessRX Radio