To be able to walk or run with a basketball, you have to dribble it. While dribbling the basketball, you can only touch the ball with one hand at a time. If you dribble it with both hands simultaneously, it is called a double dribble, which results in a turnover and the other team getting possession of the ball.
You are also not allowed to dribble the basketball, pick it up, and then begin dribbling again; this is also a double dribble. When you are dribbling the basketball, your hand must stay on top of the basketball, or you will get called for a carry, which is also a turnover.
Once you have mastered being able to dribble the basketball with either hand, you want to start working on different dribbling moves. There are four basic moves that you can use. After that, you can start getting more complex with different combinations of these moves together.
Four Basic Basketball Dribbling Moves
- Crossover Dribble Move: Cross the basketball from one hand to the other. This can be done in front of your body, behind the back, or between the legs. When doing this move, you want to fake like you are going one way before crossing the basketball over the opposite way.
- Hesitation Dribble Move: For this dribbling move, you will pause for a half-second, acting like you might cross the ball over to your other hand, but then dribble past the defender with the same hand that already has the ball in it.
- In & Out Dribble Move: This move is similar to the hesitation move in that you will keep the ball in the same hand the whole time. What you will do is begin to do the crossover move in front of your body, but then instead of letting the ball go, you will bring it back out and drive past the defender. Be careful not to carry the ball.
- Spin Move: When using the basketball spin move, you want to start dribbling in one direction with the basketball. As the defender goes to step in front of you to cut you off, you will spin off the defender and dribble past them.
Dribbling is not just about doing moves to get past your defender or being fancy with the basketball. You must be able to protect your dribble and keep the defense from stealing the basketball. You must be deceptive with your dribbles and your change of direction.
Here are a few more tips for dribbling a basketball and becoming a better ball handler.
Basketball Dribbling Tips
- Stay low to the ground and keep your dribble tight to your body.
- Keep your eyes up so that you can see everything going on.
- Change up your speeds from slow to fast.
- If you stay at the same speed the whole time, you are easy to guard.
- Be deceptive with your moves, and don’t telegraph what move you are going to use.
Becoming a good ball handler takes time and practice. Now that you know what to do, you need to go practice and work at it with different basketball dribbling drills. The more time you spend working on dribbling, the more confidence you will get. This will allow you to dribble the basketball in a game and execute all of the different moves you have worked on.