Basketball Drills for Beginners

Your 8-year-old, his friends, and their parents have turned to you.  You’re to be the next youth basketball coach.  Where do you start?  Basketball drills.  But you haven’t played since high school. Sure you know the game and some drills, but will that translate to a team of 8-year-olds? Maybe, maybe not.  If you find yourself scrounging around for basketball drills for beginners, you’ve come to the right place.

While Coach K might receive accolades far and wide, he owes a big thank you to the youth basketball coaches who shaped the skills of his Duke players.  The proper basketball drills for beginners fine-tune the necessary skills for players to succeed at the next level.  They’re skills that a player will carry with them for the rest of their basketball careers.

Dribbling

For starters, while it may sound chaotic, you should try and make sure each player has a ball at all times.  It keeps them engaged, and it will enhance their ball handling.  As for a drill, start by lining up 5 on the court, 5 feet apart.  Have each player dribble to the first cone with their right hand then dribble to the next cone with their left.  Have them continue alternating between cones then, once everyone has gone, have them come back the other way.  It’s important to remember during these drills you can also emphasize footwork and other skills outside of dribbling.

Form Shooting

This is a basketball drill for beginners that all youth coaches should emphasize.  Without proper form shooting, bad habits can develop.  Start off by covering the proper grip and motion.  Then, as a drill, line your players up 2-3 feet from the right side of the basket.  Have them shoot and rebound 15 shots. Be meticulous about their form.  Then have them shoot from the left side.

Passing

When it comes to basketball drills for beginners, passing is about as easy as it comes.  Partner your players up and have them stand 6-8 feet apart.  Properly demonstrate then have them practice chest passes, bounce passes, and overhead passes. Emphasize the importance of teamwork and proper ball movement. Once they get the hang of it, you might want to introduce a 2-ball passing drill.

When it comes to basketball drills for beginners, it’s important to remember a few things.  For starters, they’re beginners.  Don’t assume anything.  Show them everything.  Then, show them again. Try and keep them engaged.  Try to make sure each player has a ball throughout most of the practice.  Otherwise, they’ll get bored and eventually develop bad habits.  Furthermore, and lastly, remember that there are a number of skills involved with each drill.  Remind your players about fundamentals throughout each drill, regardless of what its focus may be.