Better Basketball Dribbling Drills for the Individual
Any young person who has ever played the game of basketball and found that they enjoy the sport has a favorite team, or player who they seek to fashion themselves after. For many of you it could be Kobe, Lebron, Dwayne Wade, Allen Iverson, or any number of other talented players in the big show today. And it is normal for us to desire to be able to accomplish the things we see these players do. Handling the basketball is no exception. Anybody who will ever excel at the game of basketball has a desire to better themselves, being willing to work hard, to commit the time and effort that is necessary to handle the basketball more effectively, even if you are a Forward or Center. Having the proper dribbling skills, and being able to handle the "rock" effectively is a top priority in today's modern day style of basketball. In the modern era, it is almost impossible to compete, or be a viable offensive threat -at any level- if you cannot dribble the ball!!! Unless you are 7 foot tall, which most of us will never be. Below is our overview of tips, as well as what skills are necessary to be able to dribble a basketball more effectively. Following this you can find several drills from Basic, to Intermediate, to Advanced that you can work on and practice during your own time.
Individual Dribbling Drills and how to dribble a basketball more effectively
Individual Dribbling Overview
The fundamental skill of dribbling the basketball could very well be the most important and mandatory requirement for any player or team being competitive and successful upon the hardwood. Without a team's players have a good fundamental grasp of dribbling the basketball, of being capable of getting the ball
from point A to point B, then all there other efforts, no matter how talented or physical, will be of no importance. A player who sincerely wants to be good at this game must first master the basics of ball-handling! Below we have compiled a list of the most needful tips and requirements for accomplishing this.
Practice, Practice, Practice! Such a simple thing, but in reality it is the only true way that you will ever get to where you want to be. You must be willing to dedicate a lot of your free time to this effort. If you have a basketball, and you have free time, even for a few minutes, use it to practice. Are you sitting in a chair on the porch, playing in the yard, walking somewhere? Put a ball in your hand! Never let your hands be free of a ball, whenever possible. Even if it is nothing more than simple straight up right, left, or low dribbling, you would be amazed at what it will do for your skills.
Learn to keep the ball Low
Train yourself to feel the ball, not see it
Learn to position your dribble so as to protect the ball
Pound Dribble- One ball:
Perfect drill for your confidence, timing, feel, and learning ball control. There are four different positions in which you will be alternating your dribble. They are: Your shoulders, waist, knees, and low.
1. With the ball in hand and your feet spread a little over shoulder with apart(to give you stability), in a stance that would allow you to protect the ball, begin with your right or left hand dribbling the ball. For the sake of explaining this drill we will begin at the shoulder. 2. As you are dribbling make certain to bounce the ball with a good bit of force, causing it to come up hard off of the floor each time. This should not be your typical dribble-it should be harder. If at any time you lose control of the ball-it's OK. Simply pick it up and begin back where you were. 3. After about 30 seconds to a minute of good hard dribbling, bring the ball down around waist height. *Reminder*: Keep your lead foot forward, free hand in place for balance and protection. 4. Repeat step three, moving ball down to knee height. Do your best to keep your dribble solid. You will notice that as you move lower the speed of the bounce will increase. 5. Repeat steps three and four, this time bring the ball as low to the floor as you can get it while still maintaining your dribble. 6. After step five, quickly cross the ball over to your left hand, at the same time bringing your right foot forward in your stance, and repeat steps 1-5 with the left-handed dribble.
Cross-over Pound Dribble- One ball:
In this drill you will follow the same process as in the previous drill, but instead of dribbling solely with the right or left hand, you will be using the front cross-over. The momentum and force of your dribble should be no different than before.
Pound Dribble- Two balls
This drill is in essence identical to the first drill in this series, the only difference being that instead of dribbling one ball to the right or left and then switching, you will be dribbling with your right and left hand simultaneously. Using two balls follow steps in previous drill.
This drill is a simple and might be somewhat useless in some peoples opinions. But if you are short on space, and
have some time on your hands then it is quite useful in further gaining a feel for the ball. There is nothing to it
actually. 1. For this practice find a seat somewhere home, patio, gym, etc. 2. Begin by sitting in a position with your knees together and your rear on the edge of the seat. Your feet should
be out far enough to allow plenty of room between your lower legs and seat, and your upper legs and floor. You should
be positioned as if you were sitting at the dinner table, except be on the edge of your seat. 3. Begin with the ball in either hand dribbling back and forth, crossing the ball over underneath your legs.
For this exercise, all you will need is a ball and a good surface to dribble upon. 1. With the ball on the floor, get down on one knee in a kneeling position. 2. Make sure to have your back as straight as possible without being uncomfortable. 3. Make sure your forward leg(the one with your foot placed on the floor) is positioned at a good ninety degree angle
so that your set foot allows for plenty of space underneath.
4. Take up the ball and begin dribbling the ball back and forth, crossing over beneath your upper leg.
5. Switch leg positions, and repeat steps 2-4.
Dribbling in Motion Drills:
The majority of these drills you can access by clicking in on the links below. This will take you to our Fundamentals
page where you can find them. Since the Fundamentals page takes into account these drills from a coaches perspective
in that they are explained to be done in a gym, you should be able to use them just as well as an individual drill as
long as you have a acceptable place to work on them, i.e. driveway, sidewalk, gym, etc. And although these drills
are the most basic of drills, they still are a necessary part to improving your ball-handling prowess.
Between Legs Crossover:
This drill is basically a full-court zig-zag lane drill except that instead of using the basic front crossover, player will use the drill to practice bringing the ball across through their legs while in motion.
Behind the Back Crossover:
Same as above drill, only player uses drill to work on bringing the ball across behind their back with a crossover at the moment of direction change.
Same as previous two drills, but using a good back pivot and ball control to bring the ball around to other hand when changing directions.