The first three words that were common in our household during the early years of basketball were bend your knees. At the ripe age of 12 years old my son ran up and down the court, finding the basketball in an effort to keep up with the others on the court. To somehow find the basket when shooting seemed a bit much for him both mentally and physically.


There was nothing more frustrating than watching him run up and down the court time after time, only to hit the rim and miss the basket. On the other side of the spectrum, there was nothing more rewarding that the sigh of relief and the smile on his face once he managed to not only make it down the court, but to also watch that ball go through the net and bounce slowly back on the court. Then there was that loud scream coming from #HoopMoms herself when he was fouled by an opposing player, and the silence in the gym as he stood on the line only once again to hear the voice of #HoopMoms. Focus son, and finally “Bend Your Knees.” He knew it was me. Nothing but net, what would the kid do without #HoopMoms sitting there cheering him on.


Vanessa Hughes is the proud mother of Larry Hughes, 13-year NBA veteran. Vanessa has written a series of blogs about her experiences raising a basketball player.


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