Basketball Team Shooting Drills for Coaches part 5

Basketball Team Shooting Drills for Coaches part 5

This drill will be focusing on Team Shooting Drills for coaches. This post will be the fifth one out of a series I started. As a coach you should be able to change some of these drills so that it can better suit your student, cater their skill level for example or age. As of right now just enjoy this post and make sure to soak in all the information that is presented in here.

Interleaving Shooting Drills

The Multi-Purpose Offense and Shooting Drill

This is a great shooting warm up drill that you can use for practice or games. It works on lay ups, up and unders, floaters, front cuts, rear cuts, backdoor cuts, perimeter shooting, and attacking the basket.

This is also a great drill if you are limited on baskets and need to keep a lot of players involved. Everyone can get involved.


  • Alignment
  • Two lines.
  • 4 Balls.
  • First player does not have a ball.

  • Option 1 – Lay Ups
  • 1 cuts towards the elbow, then cuts straight to the block.
  • 5 passes 1 the ball.
  • 1 shoots a lay up and gets the rebound.

  • After 5 passes, 5 cuts toward elbow, then straight to block.
  • NOTE: The passer (5 in this case) cuts immediately after the pass. This quickens the pace of the drill for more shot repetitions.
  • 2 passes to 5.
  • 5 shoots the lay up and rebounds the ball.
  • While 5 is cutting, 1 secured the ball, then passed and filled the ball to the opposite line.
  • Variations / Progressions
  • Some variations or progressions could be the up and under, jump hook, and dribble-spin.

  • After 2 passes, 2 cuts toward elbow, then straight to block.
  • 6 passes to 2.
  • 2 shoots the lay up and rebounds the ball.
  • While 2 is cutting, 5 secured the ball, then passed and filled the ball to the opposite line.
  • This motion continues over and over for the drill and the different options.

  • Option 2 – Floater
  • Now, the player will catch the ball 5 to 10 feet away from the basket and shoot a floater.

  • Option 3 – Mid to Long Range Shot
  • Now the player, will take two steps down, then cut to the opposite elbow.
  • This can simulate running off of a screen or faking in the opposite direction in order to get open. The shot is usually 10 to 22 feet from the basket.
  • You can adjust the shooting distance based on the level of your players.
  • You can also have them move a couple of feet further from the basket after each round.

  • Option 4 – Dribble Attack
  • Now the player will catch and face, then step through and attack the basket.
  • This simulates when the defender closes out hard to take away the shot and the ball handler drives by.
  • Emphasize 1-dribble lay ups.

  • Option 5 – Backdoor Cuts
  • The player cuts high, then cuts backdoor for a lay up.
  • Since we do lots of backdoor cuts in our offense, we include this in the warm up drill.
  • You could also practice give and go cuts (front and rear cuts). However, this does slow down the pace of the drill, because the passer throws two passes. One on the initial cut to the top. The second pass on the give and go cut.

Points of Emphasis:

  • On passes, have players use fakes to simulate game situations. For Lay Ups – Fake high, step through, bounce pass. Fake low, pass high.

Random Practice & Game-Based Shooting Drills with Defenders


5 Basketball Decision Training Drills


0:45 – Basketball Decision Training
2:12 – Decision Cues: Shooting, Dribble Attack, Passing, Counter Moves
4:24 –  Shooting Drill #1: Shoot or Pass
5:52 – Shooting Drill #2: Pass or Drive
6:48 –  Shooting Drill #3: Pass – Shoot – Drive
7:30 –  Shooting Drill #4: Pass or Counter
8:50 –  Shooting Drill #5: Pass – Shoot – Drive – Counter


Basketball Decision Training (BDT) is mind training. It creates an opportunity to train the minds of our players while simulating the decisions that you would make in a game while simultaneously training your skills.

Basketball Decision Training operates on the principle of “Random Practice”. Random practice means that on each repetition our players have to think because each repetition is different than the one before. Players don’t know what’s going to happen next so each attempt requires them to interpret what to do in reaction to their partner’s signals.

The opposite of random practice is “Block Practice”. Block practice describes repeating the same repetition in the same way. An example of block practice would be when a player shoots the same shot from the same spot over and over.

In our shooting practice, we manipulate many different variables to create random practice situations. This could include altering the distance from the rim, changing the angle of the shot, or using different release points for each shot.

The value of BDT is that it improves retention and transfer to performance. Because it involves practicing in a game-like way, it is more likely that our skills and decisions will transfer to the actual game.


Basketball Decision Training Cues

The main component of BDT is that each player is presented with a decision cue that dictates the action for that repetition. These decision cues can come from anyone willing to help you improve including a coach, parent, sibling, or a teammate.

There is value for the shooter who becomes an active decision maker and the passer who becomes an active participant in the shooter’s learning. The passer’s skills will also develop as they provide cues for the shooter.

Below are examples of the decisions that are cued in response to the hand and body signals given by the passer.

Decision Cues

  • Hands Out > Pass the Ball
  • Hands Down > Shoot the Ball
  • Step Toward > Drive
  • Side Step > Dribble Counter

Each of these decisions relates to a game-like situation so it gives players a building block that leads to better decision-making against live competitive defense. Below are examples of in-game decisions that mimic our decision cues.

Basketball Decisions


  • Shoot the Ball IF: The defender’s arms are down, or the defense is more than arm’s length away. 
  • Pass the Ball IF: The defender is arm’s length away. 
  • Driver the Ball IF: The defender is running at you in a long closeout. 
  • Dribble Counter IF: The offense attacks and the defender takes away the initial driving angle with a chest-to-chest position.



5 Basketball Decision Training Drills: 2-Player Drills

There are some simple ways to make a drill more random. Below are ways to randomize your feet prior to receiving a pass.

Randomize Your Feet


  • Dance Steps
  • Split Steps
  • Side Dancing
  • Side Split Steps
  • Runouts


Each of these repetitions represents a random way to move your feet prior to shooting. This can become more complex by having the player first move away from the ball, then sprint back into the catch to simulate a game action. There are many situations where players move prior to shooting, such as when a shooter relocates after a post entry, or when a player receives a pass in transition.

Note – We encourage our passers to never throw a chest pass. We feel like the chest pass is rarely used in a game anymore. Instead, we encourage players to pass outside the frame of their body using a Hook Pass, a Behind the Back Pass, or some variation of those. We want both players to have fun during the workout by being creative with their passes.

The goal of the passer is to ensure that they challenge the shooter to make a unique decision on each shot so it’s random and the shooter doesn’t know what’s coming.


BDT Shooting Drill #1: Pass or Shoot

This is our simplest version of 2-Player BDT. The passer will give the shooter one of two signals:

  1. Hands Out > Pass
  2. Hands Down > Shoot

The passer will rebound for the shooter and initiate the next repetition followed by one of these two signals. You can change the shooter after any number of shots, but we generally like to switch roles after 2-3 repetitions.


BDT Shooting Drill #2: Pass or Drive

Once players become comfortable with the initial drill, we change the decision cues to include the following signals:

  1. Hands Out > Pass
  2. Step Towards > Drive


BDT Shooting Drill #3: Pass – Shoot – Drive

The next progression includes all three possible decision cues:

  1. Hands Out > Pass
  2. Hands Down > Shoot
  3. Step Towards > Drive


BDT Shooting Drill #4: Pass or Counter

After players become comfortable with these three signals we practice the fourth signal:

  1. Hands Out > Pass
  2. Side Step > Dribble Counter

This simulates that the defender got chest-to-chest requiring the dribbler to counter. When the defender is able to get into a chest-to-chest position it is to their advantage as the defender is positioned between the ball and the basket. In contrast, the offensive player should always work to get into a shoulder-to-chest position with the defender. The counter affords the offense the chance to regain a shoulder-to-chest advantage.

Players may use any type of dribble on the counter, but we prefer the Behind the Back Dribble because it allows the offense to maintain vision and to quickly run through their dribble so that there’s no pause in the attack.


BDT Shooting Drill #5: Pass – Shoot – Drive – Counter

Finally, we mix all four of those decisions into one drill to make it even more game-like. We encourage coaches and players to progress to this stage as quickly as possible.

We firmly believe in the concept of “Hard First Instruction” because a player will have a better representation of where they are going. By making it more difficult at first, players will have a better understanding of the game-like skills and game-like decisions that they have to make. Though players may struggle initially, in the long run this helps retention and transfer to performance.



The Value of Basketball Decision Training

The value of Basketball Decision Training is that players are shooting unscripted shots. They never know in advance what shots they will end up shooting. All of their shots will be based on cues, decisions, and reads based on the signals that their partner gives them.

3-Player BDT becomes an even more complex process because there are two other players that the shooter must read. As you have fun with this and develop these concepts in your training, you can add another player by following the same guidelines in 4-Player BDT.

Basketball Decision Training can be added to any 5v0 drills as well.

Shooting Off The Dribble – 30 Point Drill

As mentioned in the video, this is a great drill that helps you improve your shooting off the dribble.  And you practice shooting free throws while tired with a little pressure.
The shooter starts near half court between each repetition.   The shooter runs to the cone and receives a pass a few feet behind the first cone. At each cone, the shooter takes three shots. 1 – Three-point shot after one dribble.  Worth three points. 2 – Dribble move to the left for a mid range jump shot.  Worth two points. 3 – Dribble move to the right for a mid range jump shot.  Worth two points. You can score a total of seven points at each cone.  This totals 28 points for all four cones. At the end of the drill, you shoot two free throws worth one point each.  This totals 30 points. A great score is above 23 points for one round.   Track your scores so you can track your improvements over time.  You can average your scores each week and month to see if you’re improving.

Frame 1

Vary Location Of Passer As mentioned in the video, you can also vary the position of the passer to simulate game passes. If you have just two players, the shooter can rebound each shot. If you have three players, you can have a rebounder, a passer, and a shooter.  You could also use two basketballs to practice more efficiently.

Frame 2

Random Practice – Hand Signals A great way to transfer skill improvement to better shooting during games is to incorporate random practice. This simply means that for each repetition, the shooter’s action is different.  This is how you shoot during a game.  You rarely shoot the same shot twice in a row. One way you can do that is by having the passer display hand signals after each pass. Hand together in front = shoot. Right fist out = first dribble is to the right. Left fist out = first dribble is to the left.

Frame 3

Random Practice – Defender You can also add a defender.  The offense chooses an action. If the defender is too far away, the shooter immediately shoots after the dribble. If the defense is too close,  the shooter attacks and pulls up to shoot after the dribble move.

Frame 4

Bring The Cones In Closer or Further! You can adjust the distance of the cones based on the player’s skill level.  Some players will need the cones closer to the basket.  Advanced players may choose to increase the distance for a greater challenge.
In summary, I hope you have enjoyed this drill and make sure to stay tuned for more informative drills. If you have any questions feel free to ask them in the comment section below, I will happily answer them. Also, if you have any things that you think should be added to this post I will try my best to improve on it;) Lastly add up the socials and receive updates on when I am dropping a post or something in the shop and generally anything about basketball.

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