If you’re hoping to improve your control of the ball, here are some helpful tips and ways to strengthen your ball-handling skills.
1. Practice dribbling hard. Keep in mind that when the basketball is in your hand, you have complete control of it – and opponents can’t easily take it away from you. So when you dribble hard, the ball gets back in your hand faster and more often. Practice dribbling at different speeds, and challenge yourself by going faster so you can develop better control over time.
2. Keep your head up. This is a basic skill for basketball players. Looking at the ball while you have possession of it means you can’t see what’s going on around you. If you can maintain control of the ball without even looking at it, you’ll be that much better equipped to play on the court! Practice your dribbling and ball skills while keeping your head up at all times. Look at the rim of the basket or keep your gaze at a specific spot on the wall while practicing all your ball-handling skills.
3. Use your fingertips instead of your palm. When you’re handling the ball, always use your fingertips more than your palm. This will give you better control and speed. Make sure to spread your fingers apart so you can cover more space and improve your control of the ball!
4. Practice moving at different angles. During a basketball game, you need to be able to move in any direction to evade opponents and quickly get to where you want to go. Being able to move from side to side while controlling the ball is important – but remember to always keep an eye on moving forward, too! Take some time to practice moving back and forth and side to side while maintaining good control of the ball.
5. Don’t forget your feet. Work on lengthening your dribble and use your feet to gain distance quickly. Dribbling the ball in a way that covers more ground means you can get away from opponents faster. Also, try not to use two dribbles if you can accomplish the same thing with one. Efficiency and speed are key!
6. Challenge yourself! Always push yourself outside your comfort zone. If you lose control of the ball, that’s okay – just try again and keep going! Practice improving your speed, accuracy, footwork, and dribbling skills. Getting the basics down pat will help you excel when you play the game on a team, and you’ll have a great foundation for building other skills, too. Just focus on getting better every day.