Regardless of your style of play, rebounding is an essential component to winning basketball games! Here are several concepts and drills to build excellent rebounding habits.
- Assign an Assistant – Emphasize!
Sounds too easy? Try this approach and see the results it can produce in a short period of time. Remember the rule: Players do not do what we teach, they do what we emphasize! Assign a reliable assistant coach to rebounding emphasis. Delegate to this coach the authority to stop practice and impose a pre-designated negative consequence to the entire team if one player fails to block out, pursue the rebound or use proper technique in securing the rebound. When players see this kind of emphasis on a single skill, they will pay attention to what they are doing in regard to that skill all the time.
- Team Competitive Rebounding
Competitive rebounding will be a team favorite as the season progresses and has the added benefit of emphasizing both offensive and defensive rebounding. Players are divided into two teams. The drill runs for five minutes. The objective is to finish the five minutes and be one of the players on the baseline team. To make the drill even more competitive have the losing team run. Diagram One depicts the basic alignment prior to the start of the drill.
Diagram Two depicts the start of the drill with X1 pass to #1 and closing out on the ball. X2 moves to an appropriate help defense position. Early in the season do not allow #1 to shoot the ball until the defense has finished positioning.
X1 and X2 block out on the shot attempt and all four players attempt to secure the rebound as shown in Diagram Three. If X1 and X2 obtain the rebound, they pass the ball to the next player at the front of the baseline team and go to the end of the lines for that team. #1 and #1 return to the end of the lines of the shooting team.
If either #1 or #2 obtain an offensive rebound, the two play offense and attempt to score. If #1 or #2 score, they move to the end of the lines on the baseline team and X1 and X2 move to the end of the lines of the offensive team. Note, regardless of whether or the initial shot attempt is made or missed by #1 (or #2) it is treated as a missed shot. Diagram Four presents an alternative the offensive team can use to increase their advantage in possibly obtaining an offensive rebound.
Following the initial pass from X1 to #1, instead of shooting the ball, #1 passes the ball to #2, forcing the defenders X1 and X2 to adjust their position. #2 may shoot the ball upon catching it. The shifting of the defense may present offensive rebounding opportunities that otherwise might not have been available.
- Circle Blockout
Circle block-out is a simple drill used to teach players block-out technique. Diagram One shows the basic alignment for the drill. Diagram Two depicts players blocking out with correct technique following a shot by the coach.
- Shell Blockout
Every team who plays man-to-man defense uses the time honored shell drill. Most coaches do not finish every repetition of shell drill with a shot and block out. This is sending a bad message to the players because it is not placing an emphasis on rebounding!
- Rebound and Run
Start every fast break drill with a rebound (or made basket) which will require the players to block out. Finish every rebounding drill with an outlet pass and a fast break! Combine multiple positive habits in each drill, teaching players to emphasize these concepts in a game.