Dribble (Basketball)

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Bouncing the ball while standing still is one of the earliest object control skills to be mastered, however it is much harder to bounce the ball while walking or running (dribbling). This skill should be introduced in Year 1 and mastered by Year 4. Progress this skill from a two handed bounce and catch, to a one handed on-the-run dribble.

Teaching tips

Once your child is ready to begin one-handed dribbling, use the following teaching tips to guide them;

  1. Pat the dog (push the ball down with your fingers)
  2. Ball in front and to the side
  3. Bounce at waist height
Developing Dribble (Basketball) through play

Allow young children to practice dribbling first by attempting a two handed bounce and catch. Demonstrate first, and use a larger ball while standing still.

  • Start with watching the ball at this stage (before progressing to eyes forward)
  • Practice bouncing against a wall and play a game of Wall Ball
  • Have targets on the ground to bounce on - use chalk to draw out your own targets in Chalk Bounces
  • Play games such as Wicked Witch with each student having a ball, use commands such as 5 bounces and then catch, sitting on the ground and bouncing, walking and bouncing, bounce around in a circle, follow a line bouncing

Further develop your child's dribbling skills by encouraging them to;

  • Practice dribbling while looking ahead at a target
  • Speed up and try dribbling at a fast walk, then jog, then run – all whilst still in control
  • Dribble in different directions
  • Play games of Modified Basketball
  • Have a go at dribbling with both hands
  • Dribble around obstacle courses
Common errors
  • Slapping the ball with the hand
  • Inconsistent force when pushing the ball
  • Problems tracking the ball
  • Unable to coordinate moving and tracking the ball

More dribble (basketball) activities

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