Youth Basketball Practice Plan

Youth Basketball Practice Plan

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!” – Benjamin Franklin

 

Youth Basketball Practice PlanAs a youth basketball coach we often don’t have all of the practice time we would like.  Because of this fact practice time is precious and should not be wasted.  Consequently we feel one of the most important things you can do as a youth coach is have a written practice plan for every practice.  When developing your basketball practice plan consider the following:

  1. Practice Priorities.  What must you get accomplished for that practice.
  2. Drills and their lengths.  We try to keep our between 5 and 10 minutes.
  3. Coaching points and responsibilities for Assistant Coaches.
  4. Water Breaks.

 

When choosing drills for your basketball practice plan consider the quote below:

“Don’t mistake activity for achievement.” – John Wooden

 

Understand the purpose of a drill and what it teaches and how it fits into your overall plan.  Don’t run into the trap of using a drill just because it was what your former coaches used when you were a player.

If you would like to learn more, we encourage you to take a look at our Youth Basketball – Coaching Guide eBook below:


Youth Basketball Practice Plan – Part 2

Youth Football Drills – Offensive Line

Youth Football Drills

(Offensive Line – Fast Get Offs)

 

One of the difficulties Youth Football Offensive Line coaches face each year is getting their young Offensive Lineman to fire off the ball.  A youth football drill that helps address this challenge that has been a staple in our practice plans through the years is the tennis ball drill.  Another drill that we recently came across comes to us from Coach Kyle Mlinek on the Dumcoach.com forum.  The name of the drill is the Topple Drill and much like the tennis ball drill its purpose is to help players quickly come of the ball.

Youth Football Drills - Topple Setup and Execution

Youth Football Drills – Topple Setup

Drill Setup and Execution

  • 1 Standup Dummy
  • Create 2 lines with players on either side of the Standup Blocking Dummy about 1 foot way.
  • On your Cadence, each player will try and topple the Dummy first.
  • Once done, each player rotates to the other line.

 

 

 

 

 

If you are looking for additional youth football drills for your team, we encourage you to take a look at the CLYFL Youth Football Drill Book.  It consists of 85 drills covering many aspects of the game.  If you need more drill ideas, please take a look out our YouTube library of football drills.  Our library includes drills for Offense, Defense, and Special Teams.  We have even included some Flag Football drills.

Youth Basketball Coaching Clinics

Youth Basketball Coaching Clinics

 

Coaching Youth BasketballTo expand our clinic offerings to Youth Basketball we have added the following series of clinics to our Clinic Schedule:

We are also looking for Youth Basketball Coaches that share our passion for the game that would also be willing to share their knowledge.  If you might be interested in hosting a clinic with us, please contact us using the form below:

 

Youth Basketball Drills – Rebounding

Youth Basketball Drills

(2 on 1 Rebounding Drill)

 

In our previous Youth Basketball Drills blog post we shared our tweak to the 6 Shot Circuit Shooting Drill called the 10 Shot Circuit.  In this post we are going share a simple Rebounding Drill that over the years has become a staple in our practices.

Youth Basketball Drills - 2on1 Rebounding Setup

Youth Basketball Drills – 2on1 Rebounding Setup

Drill Setup

  • 1 basketball
  • Line up players in a single file near half court from the shortest to tallest player.
  • First player goes to the rebounding position in the middle of the lane.
  • Second and third players line up on the elbows as shooters.
  • Coach is on the wing with the basketball.
  • Rotation is rebounder to end of the line, shooter to rebounder, shooter to shooter, next player in line to shooter.

Youth Basketball Drills - 2on1 Rebounding

Youth Basketball Drills – 2on1 Rebounding

Drill Execution

  1. Coach passes to one of the shooters who then takes a shot.
  2. Rebounder blocks out the opposite shooter who is trying to get the offensive rebound.  Note: If the shot is made, just treat it as a miss.  
  3. If the shooter/offensive player gets the rebound, the rebounder must do 5 push-ups on the side of the court prior to rotating to the end of the line.
  4. To make the drill more challenging require the rebounder to let the ball hit the floor before securing the rebound.  This will put an emphasis on the rebounder moving their feet.

 

Coaching Points

  • Rebounder should find the player first, block out, and then go get the ball.
  • Emphasize proper spacing from the basket.  If the rebounder is too close to the basket, the offensive players has the advantage.
  • Teach the rebounder that if they get pushed under the basket to spin putting their rear-end on the offensive player’s rear-end pinning them under the basket.

If you need more drill ideas, please take a look at our YouTube library of youth basketball drills.

Youth Basketball Drills – 10 Shot Circuit

Youth Basketball Drills

(10 Shot Circuit Shooting Drill)

 

In our previous Youth Basketball Drills blog post we shared a simple drill to help your players develop their weak hand.   In this post we are going share our tweak to the 6 shot circuit drill outlined in the YouTube video below:

 

 

Youth Basketball Drills - 10 Shot Circuit

Youth Basketball Drills – 10 Shot Circuit

Drill Setup and Execution

  1. We add 4 cones to the 3 used in in the 6-shot circuit above.  2 in the short corner and 2 on the wing.
  2. Execute the 6 shot circuit as normal.
  3. After the 6th shot, the player sprints to the short corner for shot 7.
  4. After shot 7, the player sprints to the opposite corner for shot 8.
  5. After shot 8, the player sprints to the wing position on the opposite side of the floor for shot 9.
  6. After shot 9, the player sprints to the opposite wing for shot 10.

We like this drill for a number of reasons:

  • The variety of shots being practiced.
  • Weak hand development with both the drop step layup and hook shot.
  • Works on shooting on the move.
  • Practicing shots when fatigued.

Coaching Points

  • Have a player or coach rebounding each shot and passing it back to the coach on the foul line.
  • Make sure players are going around the cones and not short cutting the paths.
  • Emphasize using the weak hand on both the drop step and hook shots.
  • On jump shots players should be catching the ball and squaring up prior to taking the shot.  By squaring up we mean get their shoulders and feet pointing to the basket.

If you need more drill ideas, please take a look at our YouTube library of youth basketball drills.

Youth Basketball Drills – Weak Hand

Youth Basketball Drills

(Weak Hand Development)

 

To be a good basketball player it is critical that a player learn to shoot and dribble with both hands.  A simple youth basketball drill for Weak Hand Development is what we call the Weak Hand Layup Drill.  The purpose of this drill is to work on dribbling and shooting layups with our weak or non-dominant hand.

Youth Basketball Drills - Weak Hand Layup

Youth Basketball Drills – Weak Hand Layup

Drill Setup

  • Place a cone on the wing 4 feet outside of the 3 point arc.  Note:  For very young players you can move the cone closer and for older players you can move it out a little more.
  • Players line up behind the cone with a basketball.  Note:  You can split your team up onto multiple baskets and turn this into a competition to see which team/group makes the most layups in a given time period.

 

Drill Execution

  1. On Go the first player in line dribbles to the basket with their non-dominant hand and executes a layup with the same hand.  They then get their own rebound and dribble with their non-dominant hand back to the end of the line.
  2. As soon as the player in front shoots their layup the next person in line goes.
  3. This drill should be done for a set period of time like 2 minutes with the coaches counting each made layup.  If you choose to make this a competition, losers can do 5 pushups or sit ups.

Coaching Points

  • Head up when dribbling.
  • Try and get to the basket with as few dribbles as possible.
  • Go above the block to get a good angle to the basket.
  • Make sure the player is going off the correct foot when shooting the layup.  Left hand layups should be off the right foot and right hand layups should be off the left foot.
  • Aim for the top corner of the square on the backboard.
  • Dribble all the way back to the line.

If you need more drill ideas, please take a look at our YouTube library of youth basketball drills.

7 Tips to beat a Youth Basketball Press

7 Tips to beat a Youth Basketball Press

 

Beating the PressIn our previous Basketball Blog we shared 5 Tips for Coaching Youth Basketball.  In this post we are going to turn our attention to keys for Attacking the Press.  The Press at the Youth level can be both devastating and demoralizing for your team if not properly prepared for.  Below are 7 tips for preparing your Youth Basketball team to beat the press:

  1. The best way to beat the press after a made basket is to attack it before it can set up.
  2. Teach/Drill Players that you beat the press with the Pass and not the Dribble.
  3. Teach/Drill your player initiating the press break to not inbound the ball from behind the backboard.
  4. Teach/Drill your player initiating the press break that they can run the baseline after a made basket.
  5. Teach/Drill players to face the press and not turn their backs to the defense.
  6. Teach/Drill players to stay out of “Danger Zones”.
  7. Teach/Drill players not to fear the press, but rather see it as an opportunity to score.

If your are interested in learning more, we encourage you to take a look at our Youth Basketball – Attacking the Press eBook below:

5 Tips for Coaching Youth Basketball

5 Tips for Coaching Youth Basketball

 

Coaching Youth BasketballFor our first ever Basketball Blog post we thought we should share 5 Tips that we have learned over the years coaching youth basketball.

  1.  It’s not the X’s and the O’s – It is important to understand and always keep in mind that you may be the greatest basketball mind since the Wizard of Westwood, but it isn’t what you know that is important, but what your players know.  Don’t ever expect your players to execute a skill you have not taught them and allowed them to adequately practice through drills.
  2. Be the Great Communicator – One of the easiest ways to keep your player’s parents happy is to keep them informed.  Another way is to manage their expectations and the best way to do that is to conduct a Parents Meeting as close to the first practice as possible.
  3. Organizing is Coaching – As a youth basketball coach we often don’t have all of the practice time we would like.  Because of this fact practice time is precious and should not be wasted.  Consequently we feel one of the most important things you can do as a youth coach is have a written plan for every practice.
  4. Games are won on the Practice Court – Having a plan is not enough without proper execution.  Below are some key points to follow when conducting your youth basketball practices:
    • Be positive and enthusiastically encourage your players.
    • Be consistent and set parameters you won’t allow to be crossed.
    • Encourage teamwork
    • Don’t use abusive language and be careful when touching a player.
    • Keep practice moving at a rapid pace and prevent players from standing around.
    • If a drill isn’t working, move on to the next one and revisit it at a later time.
    • Sweat the small stuff and remember what you allow is what you teach.
    • Be confident in what you are doing and why you are doing it.
    • Don’t take yourself to seriously and always find ways to show your players you care.
    • End on time and on a positive note.
  5. “The Hay is in the Barn” – Anonymous – This  is one of our favorite quotes when it comes to game day and stands to remind us our work is done and it is time for some fun.  It also reminds us at this point we are who we are and to resist the temptation to try and add any special adjustments/plays we haven’t practiced.

If your are interested in learning more, we encourage you to take a look at our Youth Basketball – Coaching Guide eBook below:


Youth Football Drills – Linebackers

Youth Football Drills

(Linebackers)

 

In our previous Youth Football Drills blog post we shared a Defensive Line Swim Move Progression Drill that we have used in past seasons to help our Defensive Lineman.  In this post we are going to share a Drill we call Fill the Alley that we use with our Linebackers to help them execute their run fits.

Youth Football Drills - Linebackers

Youth Football Drills – Fill the Alley Setup

Drill Setup

  • Plenty of Cones to define Alleys.
  • Blocking Dummies to define Line of Scrimmage and “A” and “B” Gaps.
  • 1 Football
  • 1 Line for Runners
  • 1 Line for Linebackers

 

 

 

Youth Football Drills - Linebackers

Youth Football Drills – Fill the Alley Execution

Drill Execution

  1. Linebacker aligns at his proper depth to the line of scrimmage and alignment relative to the “A” and “B” gaps.
  2. Coach designates Alley 1, 2, or 3 for the Runner.
  3. On “Go”, the Runner will run through his designated Alley.
  4. The Linebacker should take his read step and attempt to tackle the Runner.

Note:  To make the drill more difficult you can add a Blocker on the line of scrimmage so that the Linebacker must shed a block and then attempt to make the tackle.

For additional drill ideas for your team, we encourage you to download the CLYFL Youth Football Drill Book, as well as visit our YouTube library of football drills.  Our library includes drills for Offense, Defense, and Special Teams.  We have even included some Flag Football drills.

Youth Football Drills – Defensive Line

Youth Football Drills

(Defensive Line)

 

 

In our previous Youth Football Drills blog post we shared a Defensive End Box Drill we developed several years back to help teach our Defensive Ends how to properly box.  In this post we are going to share a Defensive Line Swim Move Progression Drill that we have used in past seasons to help our Defensive Lineman.  Below is an example of a Swim Move:

 

 

Youth Football Drills - Defensive Line

Youth Football Drills – Defensive Line

Drill Setup

  • 2 half round dummies.
  • 1 Ball
  • 1 Cone
  • 2 lines facing the coaches with 1 player standing upright 3 yards behind the ball.

 

Drill Execution

  1. Demonstrate Swim Technique:
    • 3 Point Stance
    • First step with inside foot.
    • Outside arm to midsection of the dummy.
    • Inside arm comes over the top and propel past the dummy.
  2. The Defense gets into a 3 point stance and on ball movement, executes their first step, then brings their outside arm to the midsection of the dummy, then bring their inside arm over the top and propel themselves to the offensive player where they execute a form tackle.  Note:  All movements are half speed until the coach is satisfied with the players form.
  3. Once satisfied with Step #2, repeat going full speed.  Note:  Switch out the player in the backfield every 5 to 6 reps.

For additional drill ideas for your team, we encourage you to download the CLYFL Youth Football Drill Book, as well as visit our YouTube library of football drills.  Our library includes drills for Offense, Defense, and Special Teams.  We have even included some Flag Football drills.

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