5 Basketball Drills for Kids to Take Their Game to the Next Level

Written by: Chris Hungerford



Time to read 9 min

As a basketball coach, you want to make sure your kids are getting the most out of their training. But it can be difficult to know what drills and exercises will help them develop key skills in an age-appropriate way. Fortunately, there are many effective basketball drills for kids that can give them an edge on the court.

5 Basketball Drills for Kids to Take Their Game to the Next Level

From ball-handling drills to shooting and rebounding techniques, these practices will help young players hone their abilities and take their game up a notch. So if you’re looking for ways to improve your team’s performance this season, check out our guide on basketball drills for kids today.

Table of Contents:

Ball Handling Drills

Ball-handling drills are essential for any basketball player, especially kids. These drills help players develop the skills needed to control and move the ball with ease. Coaches can use these drills to improve their players’ dribbling and passing abilities.

Dribbling Drills:

The Figure 8 Drill is an effective way to practice ball control while moving around the court. Players should start by standing in one spot and alternating between crossing over, behind-the-back, and between-the-legs dribbles while keeping their eyes up at all times; this drill helps build coordination and confidence on the court. For a quick change of direction when dribbling with either hand, try out the Crossover Drill - have your players run from one side of the court to another while switching hands every few steps then add crossover moves into it as they become more comfortable with it. 

Lastly, there's Around the World Drill which has your players running around cones placed in a circle or square shape while maintaining control of the ball using different types of dribbles such as crossovers or behind-the-backs depending on what you want them to focus on most during this drill.

Key Takeaway: Ball-handling drills are essential for basketball players, especially kids. Coaches can use these drills to help improve their player's dribbling and passing abilities: Figure 8 Drill, Crossover Drill, and Around the World Drill.

Shooting Drills

Shooting drills are essential for any basketball player, especially kids. Proper shooting technique is key to becoming a successful shooter and these drills can help coaches teach their players the fundamentals of shooting.

The One-Handed Layup Drill helps players practice proper form when taking layups with one hand. This drill involves starting from the baseline and dribbling up to the hoop while keeping your body in balance and using one hand to shoot off the backboard or rim.

The Two-Handed Layup Drill is similar but focuses on using two hands instead of just one. Players should start at the baseline again, but this time they should use both hands to dribble upcourt before making a layup shot off either side of the backboard or rim.

The Reverse Layup Drill teaches players how to make reverse layups by driving hard toward the basket, quickly changing direction, and finishing with a layup on either side of the hoop. This drill also emphasizes good footwork as well as ball control when changing directions quickly near the basket.

Set Shot Drills focus on teaching players how to take set shots from various distances around the three-point line while maintaining proper form throughout each shot attempt. The goal here is for players to be able to consistently hit shots from different spots around that arc without having too much variation in their shooting motion each time they release it.

Catch and Shoot Drills emphasize quick reaction times after receiving passes from teammates or coaches during game situations where there’s limited time available for shooters to get their shots off accurately. Players must learn how to react quickly after catching passes, find an open spot, and then shoot all within seconds before defenders close out on them.

Finally, Pull Up Jump Shot Drills help develop pull-up jumpers which require more power than regular jumpers due to their higher arching trajectory. It is important that shooters maintain consistent mechanics every time they perform this type of shot so that accuracy is not sacrificed even if it is taken under pressure in-game scenarios.

Key Takeaway: Shooting drills are essential for basketball players, especially kids. These drills help teach proper form and footwork when taking layups, set shots, catch-and-shoot opportunities, and pull-up jumpers.

Rebounding Drills

Rebounding is an essential skill for any basketball player to have in order to be successful on the court. Coaches can use drills to help their players improve their rebounding skills. 

The first type of drill is box-out drills, which focus on positioning and body control when going up for a rebound. The Wall Tap Box Out Drill involves having two players stand side by side with one ball between them. On the coach’s signal, both players jump and tap the wall behind them before turning around and boxing each other out for the rebound. The Frontal Box Out Drill has two players facing each other while standing a few feet apart from one another with a ball in between them. On the coach’s signal, they must turn towards each other and box each other out until one player grabs the ball off of the ground or off of their opponent's backboard. Lastly, there is Rear Box Out Drill where two players face away from each other at opposite ends of a designated area with a ball placed in between them. When signaled by the coach, they must turn around quickly and box each other out as if they were trying to grab an offensive rebound off of someone else's shot attempt until one player grabs it off of either person's backboard or off of the ground.

The second type of drill is Jump Ball Rebounding Drills, which involve more than two people competing for rebounds. These drills require multiple players to jump up together after hearing a whistle or seeing some kind of visual cue given by their coach such as raising his/her arms above his/her head. The Two-Player Rebounding Drill requires three people: two defenders guarding an offensive player who will try to get position underneath both defenders so they can grab any missed shots that come their way. The Three Player Rebounding Drill requires four people: three defenders guarding an offensive player who will again attempt to get position underneath all three defenders so they can grab any missed shots that come their way. Lastly, the Four Player Rebounding Drill requires five people: four defenders guarding an offensive player who will yet again try to get position underneath all four defenders so they can grab any missed shots that come their way.

Key Takeaway: Coaches can use drills to help their players improve their rebounding skills, such as box-out drills and jump ball rebounding drills. Box-out drills focus on positioning and body control, while jump ball rebounding drills involve multiple players competing for rebounds.

FAQs in Relation to Basketball Drills for Kids

What are the different types of basketball drills for kids?

1. Layup Drill:

This drill is designed to help players improve their layup technique and increase their shooting accuracy. It involves having a player dribble the ball towards the basket, then shoot a layup off one foot while keeping control of the ball.

2. Passing Drill:

This drill helps players practice passing quickly and accurately with both hands. Players should stand in two lines facing each other, pass the ball back and forth between them, and try to make as many accurate passes as possible within a certain time limit.

3. Shooting Drill:

The goal of this drill is for players to practice shooting from different spots on the court such as around the perimeter or from inside the paint area. They should focus on using proper form when shooting so that they can become more consistent shooters over time.

4. Dribbling Drill:

This drill helps players work on their dribbling skills by having them move around cones placed at various distances apart while controlling the basketball with one hand only (or alternating hands). As they progress through this exercise, they should be able to maintain better control of the ball even when moving quickly across court surfaces or changing directions abruptly without losing possession of it altogether.

5. Rebounding Drill:

Rebounding drills are important for helping players learn how to box out opponents effectively in order to gain possession of loose balls after shots have been taken during games or practices sessions alike; these drills involve practicing jumping up into good rebounding positions while also learning how best to position oneself against an opponent who may be trying to get past you for a rebound opportunity themselves too.

What are some good basketball drills for kids?

1. Dribbling drills are a great way to improve ball-handling skills for young players. Have them practice dribbling with both hands, using different speeds and directions while keeping their eyes up.

2. Passing drills can help kids learn how to make quick decisions and move the ball around the court effectively. Try having them pass in pairs or groups of three, making sure they keep their heads up and look for open teammates when passing.

3. Shooting drills will help kids develop proper shooting form and accuracy from all over the court, including close-range layups as well as mid-range jump shots and 3-pointers. Have them focus on techniques such as footwork, hand placement, follow-throughs, etc., rather than just heaving up shots without proper form or technique. 4. Rebounding drills will help kids learn how to box out and position themselves for rebounds, as well as develop their timing and jumping ability. Have them practice going up for the ball with two hands while keeping their eyes on the rim.

What are good basketball drills for beginners?

1. Layup Drills:

Start with basic layups, alternating between left and right hands to build muscle memory and confidence in the paint. Progress to one-handed layups or jump shots from different angles for more advanced players.

2. Passing Drills:

Teach proper passing techniques such as chest passes, bounce passes, and overhead passes with two-person drills that involve a passer and receiver. Increase difficulty by adding defenders or having passers move while they pass the ball.

3. Shooting Drills:

Focus on form shooting where players practice their shot without any defense present; progress to game speed shooting drills where defenders are added into the mix. Incorporate dribbling moves before taking a shot for an extra challenge.

What should I teach my 8-year-old in basketball?

Teaching basketball to an 8-year-old can be a rewarding experience. Start by teaching the fundamentals of dribbling, passing, and shooting. Focus on developing a proper form for each skill, emphasizing accuracy over speed or power. Introduce basic offensive and defensive concepts such as spacing, cutting off the ball, and help defense. As your player progresses, introduce more complex drills like pick-and-rolls or fast breaks. Finally, emphasize having fun while learning the game - encourage your player to make mistakes and learn from them in order to become a better player overall.


In conclusion, basketball drills for kids are an important part of any coach's training program. They help to develop the skills needed to become a successful player and team. By focusing on ball handling, shooting, and rebounding drills specifically designed for children, coaches can ensure that their players have the necessary tools to succeed in the game of basketball. With these drills in place, coaches can be confident that they are providing their young athletes with the best possible opportunity to reach their full potential as players.

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5 Basketball Drills for Kids to Take Their Game to the Next Level

5 Basketball Drills for Kids to Take Their Game to the Next Level