4 Warning Signs that there is an Issue with your Basketball Drill

Getting things wrong is not difficult, but what can be challenging for a coach is recognising there is an issue and making a change (Photo Source: Chris Yunker)
Getting a basketball drill wrong is not difficult, but what can be challenging for a coach is recognising there is an issue and making a change (Photo Source: Chris Yunker)

Every coach uses Basketball Drills. Drills form part of the process by which technical and tactical skills are taught and reviewed. Basketball Drills help a coach to break up complex learning outcomes into smaller chucks that can be isolated and focused upon more succinctly. So a player’s development can be consistent and holistic. No coach has all the answers and drills help a coach to understand the progression from one point to the next when the obvious thread connecting all points of a skills development are not obvious.


Incorrect Application


The first and most obvious of all the issues is the constant and ongoing incorrect application of the direction provided by a coach about a drill. If a coach observes that following the teaching cycle and after a reasonable amount of time the drills instructions are still not being implemented, even following a reinforcement of these points has been undertaken by the coach. Then a clear issue must be acknowledge.


There is a difference however between the sometimes slow progression by players through a very skill challenging or tactically demanding basketball drill and the players not able to implement the activity at all to an effective level.


In these situations there might be a need for a coach to simply identify where the players development is at. Identify the gap between the player’s abilities and the current drill and then identify another drill to fill this gap until the players development is at such as stage that they can meet the demands of the original drill.


Players are Disinterested


Players are just the same as any person, if a basketball drill is highly controlled with only a limited amount of creativity while featuring high repetitions of these specific movements they will eventually switch onto autopilot. A coach must be vigilant of the player’s performance, their body language, and level of engagement in general to determine if there is an issue.


In these situations, a coach is best to try to refocus the players or team onto the task. Explain the importance of the drill, its relevance to the team and how it will help with a successful achievement of the overall goals. Alternatively, maybe the coach has just underestimated where the development of the group is at and it is time for a new basketball drill.


Good Drill, Unforeseen Outcome


Every coach that has been coaching for some time (and many coaches who have only been coaching for a short time) will experience the bewildering issue sometimes faced when a basketball drill carefully selected and thought about, does not achieve the desired outcome. There are millions of basketball drills across the internet that are fantastic and worth the time needed to read and explore them. However, one of the great points in a coach’s development will be when they can see gaps within drills that are needed for the specific development of their team and its individuals.


In these situations a coach should be very active in changing, varying or revising the basketball drill on the run so that it does not have to be a waste of the time with respect to what is actually needing to be achieved.


Another option is to think about the other drills within the training sessions and consider if the required skill or tactic can be woven into their implementation to achieve the right outcome.


Players No Longer Make Mistakes


When players become exposed to a basketball drill for long enough they will eventually adapt to many of the common situations experienced routinely. While this can be viewed as a positive because the basketball drill has fulfilled its purpose, the down side is players will then be able to manipulate the play of the drill to become artificially efficient and effective. This will result in a reduced number of mistakes being made by the players and in some instances, this will even result in the more talented players within the team not having to work as hard as wanted to achieved a successful outcome.


A coach must monitor each basketball drill individually with each training session to evaluate where the team and its individuals lie in regards to mastering what drill has to offer. The fix for this situation might be as significant as progressing to the next drill in the development cycle for that particular skill or tactic. Otherwise implementing variations to the drill might also be a quick and easy option.


Mistakes will happen by players and by coaches within every training session. The important difference is that a coach must be reviewing every basketball drill all the time and making variations constantly so players stay fresh and committed to performing at their best.

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Coach Riches has been working within the sport, business and education industries for many years. During this time he has built an extensive number of formal and informal qualifications. A firm believer in training and development designed to help people reach their full potential, relevant o their needs and functional to their industry environment.

1 Comment on “4 Warning Signs that there is an Issue with your Basketball Drill

  1. I play basketball and all other sports as my hobby, not professional. And I love all the sports. Happy to see your post. Keep it up.

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