Taking Advantage of the Sideline in Basketball

Taking Advantage of the Sideline in Basketball

This article was written by Basketball HQ co-founder Kyle Ohman.


I walked into a packed gym the other day with games being run on both courts and plenty of players waiting on the sidelines to get their chance to play. As I looked around the gym, I realized that most of the kids waiting to play were sitting with their friends and talking or maybe shooting a quick shot while the game was on the other end of the court.

As I continued to watch, one thought stood out in my mind, “what are the players on the sidelines doing to get better while they are waiting?” You could literally wait an hour or two to play in some good gyms, and then if you lose, you are back to waiting again.

In a good situation, maybe you win two, three, or maybe even four games in a row, but even then, what have you done to really develop your individual skill level? Don’t get me wrong, playing pick up at a high level is great, but it can’t be the only thing you do in the gym.

If you have plenty of gym space/time and can find a gym that is empty to work on your game, then great, this basketball article isn’t for you. However, if you share a gym that is consistently filled with other players or spend a lot of time waiting to get on for a pickup game, I will give you some great basketball drills to maximize your time and take advantage of the sideline.


One Ball Basketball Dribbling Drills

One ball basketball dribbling drills are great because they allow you to develop your ball-handling skills, but they also allow you to practice specific moves. When doing these basketball dribbling drills really lock in on details, visualize a defender in front of you, and really sell the move each time.



List of One Ball Basketball Dribbling Drills


Two-Ball Basketball Dribbling Drills

The goal of two ball basketball dribbling drills is to add an extra level of difficulty to the drill,  force the player to use their weak hand, and maximize time by working on both hands simultaneously.



List of Two Ball Basketball Dribbling Drills



Tennis Ball Basketball Dribbling Drills

Tennis ball basketball dribbling drills are great for developing quick hands and hand-eye coordination. By having to toss and catch a tennis ball, the player forces themselves to complete the move quicker. The tennis ball also adds an extra level of difficulty to the drill.



List of Tennis Ball Basketball Dribbling Drills



Taking Advantage of the Sideline in Basketball Conclusion

I remember reading a basketball article about Jason Williams, aka White Chocolate, and he said that he used to turn down playing pick up games just so he could spend time working on his handles on the sideline, and he was arguably one of the best ball handlers ever to play the game.

So don’t for a second think it is a waste of time to get on the sideline and put in work. Be hungry to get better and value your gym time.


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