Here are four dribbling tips to put you on the right path to getting better handles.
Dribble with your eyes up.
Even though this might be difficult at first, don’t dribble facing the ground and hunched over the ball.
(A common exception to this rule is when leaning forward and attacking the basket/using your eyes to fake out a defender)
When hunched over the ball, other defenders can leave who they’re guarding to come steal the ball off you.
But, with your eyes up you’ll be able to see them coming.
Face forward when you dribble with your eyes scanning what’s in front of you (even when practicing by yourself).
This will help you to analyse the defense and find open teammates when playing.
Often, new players don’t do this and miss opportunities like passing to their teammate for an easy bucket.
Protect the ball with your off-hand (the hand you aren’t dribbling with).
Doing this will prevent your opponent from making a steal.
By doing this, it becomes MUCH harder for your opponent to knock the ball out of your control.
Make a habit of protecting the ball with your off-hand to reduce your turnovers.
Learn to dribble with both hands.
As a beginner you have the opportunity to get both hands at a balanced skill level.
At this point, one hand won’t be far more advanced than the other.
Only being good with one hand makes you predictable and easy to defend.
It also limits the amount of moves you can do in certain situations.
Training dribbling on both hands as a beginner will build a great base for your game moving forward.
You’ll be more of a threat as you improve, as you can do dribble moves on both sides of the basket.
Use your body wisely
As a beginner, you can start learning to use your body wisely straight away.
This will help you progress to being a better dribbler MUCH faster.
One way of doing this is keeping your body in between your defender and the ball.
Like when using your off-hand, this will prevent the defender from stealing it.
Another way is to make a habit of dribbling the ball by your side, instead of in front of you.
Many new players dribble the ball straight in front of them, making it easy for their defender to steal.
Dribbling the ball by your side puts it further from your defender, in a more protected position.
Go out and apply these dribbling tips when you’re playing next.
It might be difficult at first but will become easier and easier each time you play.
You’ll be an improved dribbler soon enough!