Drill: Dribbling Progressions – 3 Ways to Change Direction

Is your defender guarding you too close? Here is a 3 step progressions on 3 different ways to change direction to get around them! 

Being able to change direction is key for every player, but can be a hard skill to perfect. The video below provides three different ways to change direction – the cross over, behind the back, and through the legs.

The Cross Over

Key points for each progression are to keep the ball low, either at or below their knees while snapping the balls across the knees. Feet should be shoulder width apart, with the body low for good balance.

Behind the Back

Crossing the ball behind the back is the same as the first cross over, just behind the back. When snapping the ball across, try to have the wrist almost hitting the hamstring to ensure that the ball is low enough. Ensure that the players are staying low, with feet shoulder width a part, and have good balance.

Through the Legs 

Players need to make sure they snap the ball hard through the center of their legs. As they push the ball through, their hips and feet need to be pointed in the direction that they want to go.

Each version of the cross over has 4 progressions – 2 dribble-cross, single dribble cross, continuously crossing the ball with no dribble, and continuously crossing the ball low and wide. Watch the video below for walk-through demonstrations of each!

DESCRIPTION The Cross Over: Keep the body low, feet shoulder width apart, and dribble at, or below the knees. Start with dribbling two times, then cross the ball over. Next only dribble once then cross over. Once perfected, continuously cross the ball over with no dribble in between. Lastly, remain low and cross the ball low and wide.

Behind the Back: Stay low, with feet shoulder width a part. Dribble twice and then cross the ball behind your back. Next progression is to only dribble once then cross behind the back. Once perfected, cross behind the back continuously with no dribble in between. Lastly, have a low stance, and cross the ball low and wide.

Through the Legs: Stand with one foot in front of the other. Dribble twice on the right side, then snap the ball through the legs, and dribble twice on the left side, cross, and so on. Next progress to dribbling only once, then no dribble and a continuous cross through the legs. The next progression is to stand with your feet parallel, dribble twice, then turn your feet and hips to cross the ball through the legs. Move on to one dribble, no dribble, and lastly a low and wide stance crossing the ball through the legs.

SKILL FOCUS  Dribbling, Change of direction
AGE (STAGE)  9+ (Learn-to-Train)
PLAYERS  1+
EQUIPMENT  Basketballs (1 per player)
 VARIATION One way to load this drill is to add a guided defender into the drill as someone for the offensive player to perform the dribble move on. This way, athletes get the opportunity to perform this drill in a more game-like situation.

We love ball-handling videos! Comment your favorite ones in the comments below!

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