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Basketball Ball Handling Drills

Basketball handling drills are very important for becoming a good ball handler and developing a feel for the ball.

Some of the most difficult skills such as shooting, passing, dribbling and rebounding depend on handling the ball. By practicing every day, a player will be able to make significant progress.


Stationary basketball ball handling drills

Tap drill – This involves extending the hands over the head and tapping the ball quickly between fingertips. Work your way down to the floor and then back up over your head.



Neck circles – Move the ball around your neck in a circular motion

Waist circles – Moving the balls around your waist as fast as you can



Leg circles – Keep the feet about shoulder width apart. Move the ball around your right knee. Repeat using your left knee. You can also do this basketball ball handling drills by keeping your feet close together and moving the ball around both legs.

You can combine the waist circle and leg circle by first standing with your legs together. Starting at the ankles, work the ball around your legs. Move smoothly up to your knees, then waist and then back down to your ankles again.

Wall drill – Stand three feet from a wall. Hold the ball above your head with both hands and then bounce it off the wall 10 times each with either hand. You must use the top padded areas of your fingers.

Ricochet – Stand straight with your feet apart. Bounce the ball hard between your legs and then catch it behind you with both hands.


Run in place – Keep running at the same place and then bend over. Move the ball behind your right leg with the right hand and behind your left leg with the left hand.

Straddle flip – Among basketball handling drills, this is quite effective. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Hold the ball with both hands in front of your legs. Drop the ball, swing your hands to the back of your legs and catch the ball before it can reach the floor. Drop the ball once more, swing your hands to the front and catch it there. Repeat as fast as you can.

Figure eight – Stand with your knees about shoulder width apart. Bend over slightly. Hold the ball in the right hand and then pass it between your legs in a figure eight motion to your left hand.

Swing the ball to the front and then pass it from your left hand back to your right hand through your legs.

Front and back – Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Dribble the ball back and forth between your legs using the same hand. Repeat the process using the other hand.


Basketball ball handling drills on the move

Walking dribble – This is a good drill for beginners. First, select a spot on the wall at the opposite end of the court. Dribble towards that spot with your right hand. Keep your head up and eyes fixed on that spot. While coming back, select a new spot and use your left hand.

Crossover – Place chairs in a straight line about 10 feet apart. Dribble in and out of the chairs, using the hand farthest from the chair. After passing the last chair, repeat the process.

Stop and go – Choose either of left or right hand and speed dribble from the baseline to the foul line. Stop quickly while maintaining your dribble. Speed up to the half court and stop again.

Follow this by speeding to the next foul line and stopping quickly. Conclude by running to the baseline and stopping quickly once again. During this entire drill, continue to dribble. Repeat on your way back down the court using your other hand.

Pull back, crossover drill – Start dribbling and then move forward two steps. Next, move two steps back using the pull-back dribble while keeping your head up. Cross the ball over to your opposite hand and repeat the ball handling drill.



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