Of all the skills in Basketball, shooting off the dribble can be one of the most challenging, as it involves a good number of techniques. First, try to make the movement as seamless as possible. This will limit the chance for the opposing team to steal the ball. When preparing for the stop and the shot, make sure that you are well grounded and in a good shooting position (body balance).

Knowing how to dribble is more than simply being able to move a ball from point A to point B. If you are truly skilled with your dribble you can also use it to easily get around other players and break through the defense around the basket. Doing this can put you in good position great shot. However, because there are so many elements involved in dribbling, it can be one of the most difficult skills to master. There are many players who score high in the percentage of baskets to points but who find it difficult to move around the court while dribbling a ball.

If you are skilled at dribbling, it can make you a very valuable team member. Therefore, it is something you have to practice intensively. Start slow so that you can pay attention more to the dribbling of the ball than you do the amount of ground you are covering. Remember to keep the ball close to you so that you are moving the ball instead of chasing it. This is because if you let the ball get too far out in front of you there is a greater chance that you will end up losing it to a defender.

As you practice your dribble and get used to handling the ball in motion, try to speed up. Practice stopping and starting and moving the ball around you while you are stationary. Make sure that your dribble is strong with both your strong and weak hand. This can be one of the best ways to throw an opposing player off their stride. Moving the ball around your body so that you can keep it out of the hands of the other team will help you control the ball until you can either shoot it or pass it to another team member. If you feel confident, try doing your dribbling drills with two basketballs. This will heavily increase your feel for the ball and develop your hand-eye-coordination.

Once you don’t have to worry as much about the dribbling side of things you can begin to work more on shooting off the dribble. If you are able to end your dribble in a controlled fashion and get set up for the shot faster this also reduces the chances that you will have the ball stolen away. You want to make sure that your feet and body are in the proper position to sink a basket. You should also practice shooting off the dribble using each hand so that you know that you are equally strong on both sides of your body.

Keeping yourself balanced at all times is another thing to think of and critical for scoring the basket. Make sure that your shooting form in the air is as good as it is on the ground. When attacking the basket you will usually have forward momentum going on, so turning the horizontal momentum into a vertical can be difficult. Consciously think about your body position and prevent drifting while you are taking your shot. It can mean the difference between scoring and making every shot count.

Picture credit: Nathan DaintyCreative Commons Attribution