Grade school basketball is a wonderful way for players to develop their skills at their own pace. Coaches can really help their players' basketball development by selecting the right skills to teach. This article describes the basketball skills which help your players to be successful now and in the future.
Catching the basketball is the first skill for the grade school basketball player to develop. Getting a lot of experience catching the ball and pivoting toward the basket is a basic skll which helps a team immensely. By catching the ball instead of turning it over, your team has more possessions and thus more opportunities to score.
Then taking makeable shots is the next skill to develop. Makeable shots are shots in which your player can consistently reach the basket. As the season progresses, hopefully the shooting distance gets longer. It is better to establish correct shooting form on shots near the basket and then to move out gradually from the basket. Some young players try to shoot beyond their range, and they mess up their shooting form. Once the shooting form is correct and is repeated over and over, confidence builds as your player makes more and more shots.
Then it is good to focus on offensive rebounding. In grade school basketball, many shots are missed. Players who always go for offensive rebounds are going to get some of them. Spinning off players and sprinting to get to the ball are techniques which increase a player's effectiveness as an offensive rebounder. Offensive rebounds give your team more opportunities to score. When your players really realize the import of this, they are very eager to get those offensive rebounds.
Then playing fast is a great skill to develop. Moving quickly from defense to offense creates opportunities to score before the opponent defense gets back. Your player just needs to run fast on turnovers, long rebounds, and when your rebounder dribbles fast out of the pack.
It would be remiss not to mention defense as an important skill to develop. Proper stance, keeping the head over the ball, and active use of hands without getting off balance are all important defensive skills. The bottom line is for your player to do all he/she can(within the rules) to stop the opponent from getting makeable shots.
Then defensive rebounding becomes important. After playing solid defense, we want the opponent to get only one or no shots. Defensive rebounding is really to prevent 2nd shots by the opponent. Each of the your players on the court must be good at getting position in front of an opponent, getting arms and hands ready to meet the rebound, and to protect the ball from being knocked out once it is secured. This is not a glamorous skill, but it is so impotant to winning the game.
In grade school basketball, when your players develop these 6 skills, they are well on their way to being effective players who can win many games. The game becomes more fun for them when they know that they are playing it well. I hope that you will experience this with them soon!
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