Effective Ball Handling Drills For Youth Basketball Players, Parents And Coaches

Why are Ball Handling Drills so important? Consider this, every offensive skill in basketball - shooting, passing, catching, dribbling, individual moves and rebounding - requires players to handle the ball.







It's obvious then, that ball handling drills are needed to improve each of these areas of a player's game. By learning and understanding these drills...

basketball clip art, basketball pictures, youth basketball drills, youth basketball, ball handling drills, basketball drills, ballhandling drills,

  • Players will be more comfortable handling and controlling the ball. This improved comfort and control will make them more effective with their offensive skills.

  • Parents will be in a better position to help their child practice and improve their basketball skills.

  • Coaches will be able to teach their players the importance of developing good ball handling skills. They will be able to help their players improve their skill level when handling the ball, and also as offensive players.
Pointers For Ball Handling Drills

  • Players should hold and control the basketball with the padded part of their fingers, known as their finger pads.

  • Players should avoid using their palms to control the ball.

  • Players should keep their fingers spread apart while performing these drills.

  • Players should be spread out on the court facing the coach or team captain for these ball handling drills.

  • Players should practice these ball handling drills on their own as often as possible.

  • Coaches should use these ball handling drills at the beginning of every practice to help improve their players skill level.

Goal For Ball handling Drills - To practice and develop the skills needed to be comfortable handling the basketball.

Equipment - Basketball court, half court, one ball per player or per pair.

Action - The players spread out on the basketball court facing the coach. Each player should have a basketball or share with a partner. The players will perform the following ball handling drills for 30 - 60 seconds.

Ball Handling Drills


1. Finger Grabs - Players will hold the basketball with their fingertips, keeping it off of their palms. They will squeeze the ball and rotate it back and forth from hand to hand.

2. Ball Slaps - Players will slap or pound the basketball back and forth from hand to hand. They should pound the ball hard to improve their grip and feel for the ball.

3. Tipping Drill - Players will start with their hands over their head and begin to tap the ball back and forth from hand to hand, only using their fingertips. They will then work their way down to their chest, waist, knees, ankles and then back up to their head. They should keep their elbows straight and control the ball with their fingertips, not their palms.

4. Head Circles - Players will stand with their feet together. They will move the ball quickly around their head in a circular motion. They should work the ball in both directions.

5. Waist circles - Players will stand with their feet together. They will move the ball quickly around their waist in a circular motion. They should work the ball in both directions.

6. Leg Circles - Players will stand with their feet together. They will move the ball quickly around their legs in a circular motion. They should work the ball in both directions.

7. Ankle Circles - Players will stand with their feet together. They will move the ball quickly around their ankles in a circular motion. They should work the ball in both directions.

8. Body Circles - Players will stand with their feet together. They will combine the head, waist and leg circle drills into one. They will start with the basketball at their head, work down to their waist, then down to their legs, and finally to their ankles. They will then work their way back up their body. They should work the ball in both directions.

9. Around Each Leg - Players will stand with one leg forward. They will move the ball quickly around that leg in a circular motion. They will then switch and use the other leg. They should work the ball in both directions.

10. Figure Eight - Players will stand with their legs spread out wider than shoulder width. They will start with the basketball in their right hand. They will move the ball through their legs to their left hand, then around their left leg and back through their legs to the right hand. This forms a figure eight motion. Players should work the ball in both directions.

11. Ball Drop - Players will stand with their feet shoulder-width apart. They will hold the basketball between their legs by putting one hand on the ball in front of their legs and one hand on the ball behind their legs. They will then drop the ball and quickly switch the position of their hands. A simple variation would be to let the ball bounce before catching it.

12. Straddle Flip - Players will stand with their feet shoulder-width apart. They will hold the basketball with both hands in front of their legs. They will drop the ball and swing their hands behind their legs, catching the ball before it hits the floor. They should do this as quickly as possible.

13. Toss and Catch - Players will stand holding the basketball in front of them at waist level. They will then toss the ball up over their head and catch it behind their back. A more difficult variation would be to have the players reverse pivot after they toss the ball up and then catch it behind their back.

14. Wall Taps - Players will stand about three feet from a wall. They will hold the basketball in their right hand, extended above their head. They will quickly tap the ball 10 times off the wall. They will then switch to their left hand. Players should work on controlling the ball with their finger pads, and not the palm of their hands.

15. Ricochet - Players will stand with their feet shoulder-width apart. They will hold the basketball in front of them with both hands. They will quickly bounce the ball between their legs and catch it behind them with both hands.

16. Crab Walk - Players will walk down the court in a bent over position. They will work the basketball between their legs in a figure eight motion as they walk down the court. The players should move at a pace they're comfortable with.

*****


I hope you found these Ball Handling Drills for youth basketball to be helpful and informative. Remember - ball handling skills are needed to be more effective at shooting, passing, catching, dribbling, individual moves and rebounding. Players can become a complete, all-around basketball player by mastering these ball handling skills!

If you need more great information on these basketball drills or other basketball topics, I would suggest you purchase some good basketball books and videos. These will provide you with a wealth of knowledge about the game of basketball.



Return To Ball Handling Drills Top

Return From Ball Handling Drills To Youth Basketball Drills

Return From Ballhandling Drills To Home Page