Basketball Handling Drills

Improve your ball control with our 8 Basketball Ball Handling Drills. Each drill has a video demonstration, organisational instructions, and coaching points.

Control your Moves

The aim is to improve control and handling, dribbling. The player starts by dribbling forward 3 to 5 bounces. On the last bounce, the player stops, catches the ball in front of them, making sure their knees are bent and feet are parallel to each other.

Progressions:

  • Player can now dribble the ball backward in the same fashion.
  • Dribble to the left and right in a shuffling action, when going to the right make sure the ball is dribbled with the left hand, and when going to the left the ball should be dribbled using the right hand.
  • Use alternate hands when going forward and back.
  • Increase speed
  • Dribble lower

Coaching Points

  • Make sure the player gives the ball a hard, quick slap when changing hands.
  • The hand that is not in use should be ready for the switch at all times, so should be held between the player’s legs.
  • Concentrate on stopping quickly, making sure the knees are bent.
  • Everything should be done in control.

Around the Body

The aim is to improve control and handling. The player starts with the ball in above their head and circles the ball clockwise around their neck, down to the waist, knees, and then ankles.

Progressions:

  • Increase the speed of movement.
  • As the ball is circled around each body part, the player can slap the ball with one hand.
  • change direction to anti-clockwise

Coaching Points

  • Keeping the fingers spread
  • Making sure the ball is held firm as this should improve a players ability to hold on to rebounds, passes, or collecting a loose ball.

Scissor 2

The aim is to improve control, dribbling, and handling. Player starts bent over, low to the ground, knees slightly bent, and toes pointing straight ahead. Player moves their legs forward and backward alternately.

When the player’s left leg is forward, they move the ball behind it and between their legs to his opposite (right) hand, and when the right leg is forward the ball is moved behind that and to their left hand.

Progressions:

  • Increase the speed and distance of the dribble

Coaching Points

  • Players should keep looking ahead and not at the ball
  • Make sure the ball is behind each of their legs to avoid tripping over in the event of the ball being dropped.
  • Maintain control of the ball at all times

Quick Hands, Lazy Legs

The aim is to improve control, dribbling, and handling. Player starts by sitting down on the floor with their legs spread wide apart. Player alternately slaps the ball between their left and right hands.

Progressions:

  • Whilst sitting the player can try to dribble the ball between their legs using alternate hands.
  • Lower and faster dribble

Coaching Points

  • Try to keep the ball below chest height whilst dribbling

Flip, don’t drop

The aim is to improve control and handling. Player crouches over with their knees bent, feet shoulder-width apart, with both hands behind their legs, holding the ball. The player then flips the ball forward and up, brings their arms in front of their legs and catches the ball with arms outstretched.

This exercise can be reversed so the player throws the ball back between their legs, and catches the ball behind them.

Progressions:

  • Increase the speed of movement.
  • Have 1 hand in front and the other behind their legs and hold the ball between them, drop the ball, then switch the positions of the hands before the ball hits the floor.

Coaching Points

  • Keeping the fingers spread.
  • Making sure the ball is held firm as this should improve a players ability to hold on to rebounds, passes, or collecting a loose ball.
  • Concentrate on smacking the ball hard, when changing the position of the hands.

The Slapper

The aim is to improve control and handling. The player holds the ball in their right hand with their fingers spread and slaps the ball hard with their left hand. Repeat the process in the left hand and slapping with the right.

Progressions:

  • Whilst keeping the ball moving lower the hands below the knees and above the head.
  • Do not look at the ball.

Coaching Points:

  • Make contact with the ball using fingers and thumbs. Not the palm of the hand.
  • Pound the ball hard to improve the feel for the ball and grip