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Ball handling Drill 1 - The Slapper

The player holds the ball in their right hand with fingers spread, and slaps the ball hard with their left hand. For more details :
Ball handling Drill 2 - Around the Body
 
Aim: To improve control and handling

How: 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.

Ball handling Drill 3 - Flip, don't drop

Aim: To improve control and handling

How: 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.

Ball Handling Drill 4 - Quick Hands, Lazy Legs

Aim: To improve control, dribbling and handling

How: 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

Ball Handling Drill 5 - Scissor Dribble

Aim: To improve control, dribbling and handling

How: Player stands with knees bent, toes pointing straight ahead, keeping back straight, and making sure not to bend over. Then they move their legs in a scissor-like fashion. Player dribbles the ball from front to back, from the left hand to the right and back. They can then complete this exercise from back to front, and should look to make fifty plus bounces without a mistake.

Progressions:

  • Lower and faster dribble

Coaching Points

  • Players should keep looking ahead and not at the ball
  • Concentrate on completing the dribble quickly
  • Maintain control of the ball at all times
Ball Handling Drill 6 - Scissor 2
 

Aim: To improve control, dribbling and handling

How: 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
Ball handling Drill 7 - Make an 8
 
Aim: To improve control and handling, dribbling

How: Player begins with feet apart, and leans to the right. Starting outside their right leg they dribble the ball with their right hand, the player must then lean to the left and dribble with the left hand.

Progressions:

  • Player can repeat the drill, but now on the move, and dribble on a figure of 8 path, changing hands as he leans in the other direction.
  • Increase speed
  • Dribble lower
  • Make the path of the dribble harder, with more changes in direction.

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 players legs.
  • Hands should be kept behind the ball as they dribble.

Ball handling Drill 8 - Control your Moves

Aim: To improve control and handling, dribbling

How: Player starts by dribbling forward 3-5 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 backwards 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 players legs.
  • Concentrate on stopping quickly, making sure the knees are bent.
  • Everything should be done in control.
How much effort do you put into your basketball drills? Take a look a this awesome ball handling video!
Cool Pete Maravich Ball Handling Drills!
 
More Pistol Pete Drills demonstrated by some players from Farmington HS.