Thursday, December 14

Are You A Good Ballhandler?

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Ballhandling Coordination

One of the most basic, yet most important aspects of basketball is the ability to effectively handle the ball. Some of the most prolific masters of this art were the great Magic Johnson, and of course, the Harlem Globetrotters! To be a top-flight ballhandler (which is key to being a great point guard) one must be able to survey the floor while handling the ball.

The ballhandler cannot afford to be concerned with whether he/she is going to be able to control the ball at high speeds especially while running a break. Everyone on the team relies on the ballhandler to get the ball down the floor and be the catalyst toward making something happen for the team. If you cannot handle the rock, then go back to the drawing board because the better you are, the more effective you are, the bigger asset you are to the team, and the more your teammates are going to want the ball in your hands!

A classic rule of life applies here: if you can handle two of something, then mastering one thing will be much easier. In other words, if you can handle two balls at high speeds while keeping your eyes looking ahead, handling one will be a piece of cake.


Stand at one end of the court. Hold one basketball in each hand. Begin to walk forward toward the opposite baseline, bouncing the ball in your right hand first. In the fraction of a second after the ball in your right hand has hit the floor, bounce the left ball. In the fraction of a second after the left ball hits the floor, bounce the right ball. Continue in this fashion down the court. As you begin to feel more comfortable doing the drill, start to pick up your pace.

Ideally, you will eventually be able to sprint down the floor, bouncing both balls with equal skill. Don’t underestimate the importance of this drill! I have seen NBA and WNBA players STILL performing this drill at the on-set of a practice. It sounds simple, and it is, so make sure to master ballhandling and you’re on your way to a great basketball career!


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