Basketball Dribbling Drills for Beginners
When trying to improve a team, youth basketball dribbling drills can be an important element, but unlike passing skills, learning to dribble effectively is something that is important to individual play. Whether a player is bringing the ball up to the front court, driving to the hoop or simply attempting to get away from a defender without the opportunity to pass, dribbling skills are important. Many drills can be learned, so a player can practice on their own at their own pace. The following are four basic examples that I use to utilize at a young age.
High-low ball handling drill
The player begins by dribbling the ball waist high. As the balls moves downward, the hand follows the ball to the floor, and the player attempts a low and fast dribble. You repeat this type of dribble until your arms start to burn. I used to count 100 bounces in my head. This drill helps build skill in dribbling a low bouncing ball. It is a skill that is used in many situations during a game.
Circle Dribbling Drill
Dribble the ball around each leg with the same hand. First, put the left leg forward and with the left hand, dribble around the foot including inside the leg to make a complete circle. Do this also with the right foot and hand. This helps a player learn to control the ball while dribbling. Perform 20-30 circles around each leg without messing up.
Figure 8 Ball Handling Drill
Same as the circle dribbles but make figure eights around both legs and switch hands as you dribble through both legs. The trick here is to learn to do this without looking down at the ball. After practicing this, a player will learn to do this while looking straight ahead. This is an important skill to have as a player moving the ball can be more effective if he doesn’t have to look down while dribbling. Here is a Figure 8 dribbling video that I personally created that demonstrates the Figure Eight.
V Dribbling Drill
Place one leg forward and with the left hand bounce the ball once through the legs stopping it with the right hand. Immediately bounce it back through the legs to the right hand. Continue to do this making sure that there is only one bounce per hand and neither hand is catching the ball. Catching the ball or stopping the movement in any way is the equivalent of double dribble under game conditions.
For young basketball players wanting to watch great dribbling skills look no further than the National Basket Association. There is great debate as to who is the best dribbler among professional players, but Chris Paul of the Los Angeles Clippers is at the top or near the top of everyone’s list. Watching Paul handle the ball is a lesson for youth basketball dribbling drills every time he plays the game. Some of the key things you have to focus on when dribbling a basketball is keeping your head up, finger control, pounding the basketball, quickness and mental focus.
A list of basketball dribbling drills can be found here
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