Y Dribbling Drill

The Y Dribbling Drill provides an opportunity for players to link a number of different attacking moves together. The activity focuses on attacking the basket from the platform of having to use two different dribbling techniques to break free and create the shot. The Y Dribbling Drill can be used from the traditional top of the keyway or moved around the half court so players can become familiar in attacking the basket and making counter movements to find a good shot.


It is not usual during a players attack of the basket that they are required to make a counter move when the help defence starts to rotate. This is a very challenging aspect for an offensive player, as they need to make a read and adjust their driving lane on the move and under pressure. The Y Dribbling Drill looks to try and provide some different scenarios for this situation be rehearsed without the pressure of the defence initially.

Y Dribbling Drill Diagram 1
Y Dribbling Drill Diagram 1

The Y Dribbling Drill starts will three cones, chairs or markers on the court. One is at the Point Position and the other two a placed on each of the elbows respectively.


A line is formed by players at halfway. Each player has a ball ready to start the drill. Players alternate which way they will go (left or right) following their dribbling move at the first cone.


Players have the opportunity to link two dribbling moves before attacking the basket. Those two dribbling moves can be any combination, but as players become familiar with their combinations, they will start to develop their own linkages and preferences.


To finish players can perform either a close range jump shot, floater or lay-up.


When starting out a coach should direct players on the fundamental dribbling sills that need to be mastered. However, a free run for players should be provided towards the end of the allocated drill time so players have an opportunity to practice their favoured patterns and counter moves.


The different types of dribbling skills to be included are:


  • Crossover dribble
  • Retreat dribble
  • Onside dribble
  • Stutter dribble
  • Spin dribble


One key teaching point is for the inside shoulder of the dribbler to move outside the line of the marker. This will increase the degree from which the change of direction is performed.

Y Dribbling Drill Diagram 2
Y Dribbling Drill Diagram 2

A variation of the Y Dribbling Drill is to move the starting position from one along the split line, and move to the sideline. Again, players will have the opportunity to practice movements that are game realistic.


Using the Y Dribbling Drill from the wing is very useful. As many players who play on the wing often find themselves in no-man’s land once they start attacking the baseline towards the short corner. In many cases, players look either to shoot (sometimes under heavy pressure or with a poor angle) from this spot or end up pass away from the basket. However, a player who can attack towards this position and then keep their dribble alive while still advancing to the basket is very difficult to guard.


Any defensive rotation that happens to the short corner will pull defensive players significantly away from the basket and opens extensive passing lanes around the hoop.


The Y Dribbling Drill provides a platform for players to start to think about what they will do to counter the rotations or recovery of the defence. By being able to counter this type of situation a player goes from being effective to being unstoppable…

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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.

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