How to Improve Ball Handling
How to Improve Ball Handling
If you want to improve ball handling ability there is no replacement for good old-fashioned time and practice, however there are some keys that can help you get the most out of this time and practice. Obviously keeping a basketball in your hands whenever you can will help you improve significantly, but my goal is to help you improve your ball handling more quickly than you would with just any average practice session. Here’s some tips that will get you those ankle-breaking handles much quicker.
Increase Ball in Hand Time
One of the first things I learned when I started learning the art of ball handling was not to “slap” the ball, but rather to push it, making it much easier to control. Take this concept to the next level and you will instantly see big improvements in your ball handling. The idea is simple – on every dribble keep the ball in your hand for as long as possible before releasing it and when it bounces back up get one of your hands back on the ball as quickly as possible. This gives your greater control of the ball, allows you to change the ball’s path more quickly when reacting to defenders, and helps eliminate mistakes from variables such as uneven spots on the court, over or under-inflated basketballs, dead spots in the court.
The easiest way to improve you ball in hand time is to keep your hands close to the ground when you’re dribbling. For a further explanation of this check out my first Breakdown Moves video on my streetball moves page. In that video I show a detailed explanation of why ball in hand time is important to improve your ball handling.
Improve with Specific Ball Handling Drills
If you’re not practicing ball handling drills that have a specific purpose for your game, then you’re just getting a workout without improving much of your actual ball handling skill. Never mistake making yourself tired for a good workout when it comes to improving ball handling. Don’t get me wrong, you can get plenty tired while working on your handles, but if you want to know how to improve your ball handling you should start by looking at your weaknesses. Whether it is control, speed, your weak hand, or being able to react to game situations you need to find ball handling drills that can help you improve for your specific weaknesses.
Check these three ball handling drills that will work well for just about any player to improve their handles. They will develop your speed, coordination, reaction time, hand strength, and stationary ball handling ability. Once you get they become easy for you they still work great as a warmup. In the future I’ll have a full ball handling program with multiple drills that you can use to work on your specific weaknesses.
Practice Ball Handling for Game Situations
Working on your skills and putting in time on ball handling drills to improve your weaknesses is a great start, but it will only get you so far. At some point you have to work on your ball handling for game situations, and that means working on game moves when you practice, and getting out there and playing in actual games. One simple way to practice game moves on your own is to work on 1-3 dribble combinations that you can use to create space from your defender, which means you’ll have to focus on your ball handling while on the move.
If you really want handles that will leave defenders guessing check out the Ultimate Breakdown Moves program. It features 15 tips on how to read and react to your defender and 25 moves that will get you prepared for game situations. I discuss a lot of the secrets on how to improve ball handling both in practice and in-game scenarios. If you want to be the guy or gal with the handles everyone talks about you need to check it out!