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Posted November 1, 2016

Developing a player's weak hand

By Phil Beckner, Weber State University, Ogden, Utah

Post and perimeter players benefit from the development of both hands. The following drill develops a player's weak hand in the areas of dribbling, passing and finishing around the basket.

It's also a great way to warm up to start individual workouts in the offseason. Plus, coaches are allowed to be creative and modify the drill to suit the players' strengths or weaknesses or the team's style of play.

Beckner1.jpg

DIAGRAM 1: Weak-Hand Drill (A). The player dribbles with the weak hand to the cone, jump stops, pivots and makes a one-handed push pass with the left hand (most likely the weak hand) to the coach.

You want players to take as many dribbles as possible to the cone while going full speed, keeping their head up and coming to a good, balanced jump stop.

The player must execute the pass to the coach's chest/target area.

Beckner2.jpg

DIAGRAM 2: Weak-Hand Drill (B). After the push pass, the player cuts around the second cone and receives a pass from the coach while cutting to the basket.

When finishing, emphasize to players to focus their eyes on the basket and have the ball go through the hoop without touching the rim.

Also, choose from a variety of ways for players to finish the drill (by taking the shot). For post players, have them do the following:

  1. Off one leg shooting over the rim.
  2. Off one leg using glass.
  3. Coming to a jump stop and using a power lay-up.
  4. Coming to a jump stop and shooting a left-handed jump hook.
  5. Coming to a jump stop, using a shot fake and stepping through with the left foot.
  6. Finishing with contact as another coach is under the basket and bumps the player with a pad.

Try these seven finishes for perimeter players:

  1. Off one leg shooting over the rim.
  2. Off one leg using glass.
  3. Coming to a jump stop and using a power lay-up.
  4. Shooting a runner/floater off one leg.
  5. Coming to a jump stop, using a shot fake and stepping through with the left foot.
  6. Catching, taking one dribble back and shooting a five-footer off the glass.
  7. Finishing with contact as another coach is under the basket and bumps the player with a pad.

Choose three or four of these specific finishes and have each player complete them twice.

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DIAGRAM 3: Extra Dribble Moves For Guards. When your guards run this drill, a variation is to set up a cone at the free-throw line. The lead pass from the coach comes earlier so the guard can perform a speed dribble (blow-by), an in-and-out, a hesitation step or a stutter step. Most finishes then come off one leg and the player is expected to get to the rim in one dribble after executing the move. You may also add a pull-up jumper instead of finishing at the rim.

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