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Basketball Skill Drills

What are the basketball skill drills all about? Basketball skill drills are the main way you will improve basketball fundamentals and basic skills.

There are a wide variety of drills you can perform for each skill, but for the sake of time and space, I limited one drill per basic fundamental. Enjoy…




Shooting isn’t the most important skill to learn (that goes to dribbling and defense), but I’ll mention it first because players usually want to score. Shooting takes more practice and patience to master.

A good shooter will spend years at a basketball hoop shooting shot after shot. Some players improve their shooting stroke by going through a ridiculous amount of shots in a day – say about 1,000 shots or more.

My best advice is to start young and if you did not, make up for lost time with more shooting reps per day (hey nobody said Reggie Miller could shoot overnight either).


The great concept about shooting is it’s easy to do alone. In fact, shooting is even better when you are alone because it will keep you company. Another teammate always helps because they can rebound your shots, but it’s only a luxury.

So if you shoot by yourself, take turns shooting at different spots on the court. Start close and work your way out. Do not immediately shoot three-pointers. Work on shots often ignored, like bank shots and baseline jumpers. Challenge yourself to make a certain number of shots from one spot before changing locations.

If you have a partner, you now have even more reason for competition. Designate five spots on the floor. If you want to work on your perimeter shooting, it’s advisable to do so with a partner (because long shots mean long rebounds).

Set two spots behind the arc on each baseline. Set two more spots at each corner of the hoop and the final spot directly in front of the hoop behind the arc. Instruct your teammate to stand near the hoop.

Start on one of the baselines and have the teammate pass the ball out to you. Make sure you are ready to shoot before you receive the ball. Bend your knees and hold out your hands to accept the pass. Shoot quickly when receiving the ball. While this is only a drill, shooting quick to help you adjust to game scenarios.


After taking the first shot on the baseline, roll into the second shooting spot to your left or right (depending on what baseline you started at). The teammate should rebound and pass the ball quickly so you receive just as you are running into the shooting spot. Shoot again.

Continue the same procedure all the way around the three point line. When you get to the other baseline, start in the other direction.

You should take a total of 10 shots before stopping. Have the teammate keep track of the number of made baskets. Work on improving that number.


Ball Handling


Grab five cones and set them ten feet apart, the entire distance of the basketball court.

Start in a triple threat position. If a friend is handy, give him a stop watch.

Once the whistle blows, immediately dribble down the court, interweaving between the five cones. Focus on getting as close to the cones as possible without knocking them over. Keep the crossover dribble tight and close to your body. Dribble and run fast, but under control.

When you reach the other baseline instruct your friend to immediately hit the stopwatch. Record the time.

Repeat the same process two more times. Keep your best time and constantly work on improving on it. That’s you develop skills with these basketball skill drills.

For an added challenge, place the five cones closer, so the last one does not cross the half-court line. Time and work on your ball handling.




Passing is a tougher drill because you almost always need a teammate.

While you can pass with a standard basketball, it’s always nice to also have a “weighted” ball on hand. “Weighted” basketballs are much heavier than standard basketballs. They help improve forearm strength and passing.

Stand ten feet away from your teammate. Grab the weighted ball and begin with chest passes. Take ten steps back and pass over the head. After you do this drill for about five minutes, switch to a normal basketball.

Notice the difference? Starting to grasp these basketball drills? Here’s one more…




Talk about a great conditioning drill on top of a rebounding drill.

Stand at the free-throw line, but on one side of the key. Place the ball in your hands, as you face the rim.

Turn your head and look at the opposite corner of the free-throw line.

See it?

That’s your destination.

Time the drill for 30 seconds.

Toss the ball at the backboard at an angle, so it will land somewhere on the other side of the key. As soon as you toss the basketball, shuffle your feet over to the other corner of the free-throw line in anticipation. If you throw with the right power and speed, you will more than likely have to jump over to the other corner as the ball comes at you.

As soon as you land, toss the ball back angling it towards the other corner. Repeat the process until time runs out.

This constant back and forth shuffle on the free throw line improves rebounding, strength, and conditioning. That’s it! Master these basketball skill drills and do them over and over till you can do them in your sleep.



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