coaching youth basketball

Tips for coaching youth basketball

Always start with the basics

Take it one day at a time. Start teaching the basics first. Some players might know more about the game but you should teach as if they are all beginners. Combing the web for tips and techniques is beneficial only if you focus on starting from the bottom rather than advanced level drills. Getting acquainted with the common playing habits of each player is necessary. Each player cannot be taught the same way and you will have to give them individual attention. Here are some basics to start the coaching process with:


  • Form Shooting: Keep your players close to the basket to show them the proper shooting form. Bend the knees and draw your elbows in. The ball should be on the pads of your fingertips and not in your palm. Follow through as you release the ball.

form shooting

  • Ball Handling: Your knees should be bent with eyes looking upwards. 


  • Passing: In youth basketball, passes should be sent with two hands and the ball has to be received in the shooting pocket. The chest pass, over-the-head pass, and the bounce pass work at this level.
  • Triple Threat Position: The triple threat position gives an advantage to the player to make any offensive move. Bend your knees with the ball on the hip to shoot, pass, dribble or pivot easily. 


  • Defensive Stance: For a perfect defensive stance, bend the knees with arms out wide. Keep the back straight. Make sure your players are not standing straight-legged or their backs are hunched.
  • Boxing Out: Teach the young players to box out and then aim for the ball. Do not let them just run to the rim for the basketball. This is especially important.
  • Screening: The proper way to set a screen needs to be taught early on. Bend the knees, stay set and then cover yourself.



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