8 Best Basketball Drills For Your Next Tryout

8 Best Basketball Drills For Your Next Tryout


When it comes to basketball tryouts, finding fundamental basketball drills is key to efficiently evaluating players and making confident team placement decisions. Time is of the essence, so you need the right tools and drills organized to ensure a smooth, successful evaluation.

Keep it simple, you don’t want to spend hours teaching new players how to run complicated drills. Stick to basic, good basketball tryout drills that will still enable you to assess your athletes’ technique and competency.

If you’re looking for an easier way to evaluate your basketball players, where you will eliminate basketball forms and data entry, this can be accomplished using the SkillShark app, the leading choice for coaches, and the highest-rated evaluation app on Google. Using SkillShark, you can easily score athletes on any basketball drill using your smartphone or tablet.

Basketball evaluation software

Top 8 Basketball Tryout Drills

1. Dribble With Layup


This basketball dribbling drill helps players improve their ball-handing technique, hand-eye coordination, and timing.


For this basketball tryout drill set up two lines of players on opposite ends of the court (furthest away from the net).

How To

The first player in each line should start by dribbling down the court, towards the basket, and finish with a layup. If they miss the shot, they should retrieve their rebound and go to the end of the line. If they make the shot, they don’t have to perform the drill again.

2. Shuffle and Scoop


This basketball agility drill helps players work on their lateral movements.


For this basketball drill, line up 6-8 players on the left side of the court, about 2 feet behind each other. Each player will start in a squatting position, with their chest up and feet hip-width apart.

How To

Staying in a squat position, players will shuffle twice to the right side and bend down slightly with both hands (as if they are pretending to pick up a basketball) while still keeping their chest up. Players will continue the shuffle and scoop drill until they reach the end of the court.

See the “Shuffle and Scoop” drill in action

3. Move and Pass


This basketball passing drill teaches players how to pass continuously while moving from a distance.


For this basketball tryout drill, have two players stand opposite one another and maintain a distance of approximately 12 feet apart. Players will stand at the very end of the court (furthest away from the net).

How To

As players move down the court, they will continually throw chest passes to each other. Then, they will conclude the drill with one player making a layup. To execute the drill, it is recommended to complete six passes down the court to start. Gradually decrease the number of passes to five, four, and eventually three.

4. Around the World


This basketball shooting drill teaches players to work on their stance, grip, and follow-through when making a shot.


For this basketball drill, it is recommended to have each player perform “close-range shooting” from 7 specific locations in front of the basketball hoop.

How To

Each player should attempt to make seven consecutive shots at each spot before moving on to the next location. The ultimate objective is for the player to successfully make 35 shots in a row. Once player #1 has finished executing the drill, the next basketball player is up for this basketball tryout drill.

See “Around The World” drill on YouTube

5. Quick Release


This basketball shooting drill teaches players to work on their stance, grip, and follow-through when making a shot.


For this basketball tryout drill organize 5-7 cones in a semi-circle formation on the court at a distance of 12-15 feet from the basket.

How To

The first basketball player will begin this basketball drill by shooting at one of the cones (either on the far left or far right), retrieving their rebound, and then dribbling back to the next cone in the sequence to take another shot. This drill should be repeated for a duration of 2-3 minutes. After the allotted time, the next player will go up.

Click here to watch and learn more about the “Quick Release” drill

6. 2-on-2 Box Out


This basketball rebounding drill teaches players to position their hands, block out, and catch the ball.


For this basketball tryout drill, one offensive basketball player and one defensive basketball player will stand on each side of the free-throw lane. The coach will stand one foot away from the free-throw line.

How To

The coach will throw up the ball. The offensive basketball player will try and go after the rebound while the defensive basketball player will try and block the rebound. If the offensive basketball player succeeds, they can attempt to make a shot. If the defensive basketball player succeeds, they pass the ball back to the coach.

7. Two Line Lay Ups


This important basketball drill conditions players to bring the ball above their heads, gain sufficient air (while jumping), extend their arms, and flick their wrists to make this shot.


For this basketball tryout drill, split up players into two lines: one shooting line and one rebounding line.

How To

The first shooter will dribble and attempt to make the layup. After the shot is taken, the first rebounder will collect the ball and pass it to the second shooter in line. The shooter will then join the rebounding line and the rebounder will join the shooting line.

8. Block Before Bounce


This basketball defence drill works on defensive positioning to prevent opponent rebounds.


For this basketball tryout drill, four offensive players will spread around the midrange of the court. Four defensive players will start inside the key. The coach, who has possession of the basketball, will be on the free-throw line.

How To

The coach will throw the basketball from the free-throw line. The defensive players must immediately sprint out to cover the offensive players who are looking to grab an offensive rebound. Instead of going after the basketball, the defence attempts to block the opposing players and prevent them from getting a rebound, ultimately making the ball bounce. If the defence succeeds, the drill is over. If the offence succeeds, they can attempt to score.

Expanding Your Coaching Toolkit

While our primary focus has been on the basketball drills, it’s valuable for coaches across all sports to have a versatile approach to evaluations and selection of basketball players. If you’re involved in coaching basketball or looking to expand your understanding of basketball tryouts, you can enhance your ability to run efficient and effective sessions. Here’s a brief overview to get you started:

Basketball Tryout Format

  • Warm-Up: Dynamic exercises focusing on agility and flexibility.
  • Basketball Drills: Assessing players’ shooting, passing, dribble, and defensive skills.
  • Game-like scenarios: After running through basketball drills, emulate a “real-life” game scenario during tryouts.

Basketball Tryout Plan

  1. Set Clear Objectives: Determine what skills and attributes are most important for your team.
  2. Schedule Basketball Drills: Allocate specific times for each drill or activity, ensuring a smooth flow and minimizing downtime.
  3. Include Evaluation Time: Build in moments for coaches to discuss and note observations about players’ performances.

Basketball Tryout Checklist

  • Equipment Ready: Balls, bats, gloves, helmets, bases, and any necessary protective gear.
  • Drill Stations: Set up stations for each planned activity to facilitate smooth transitions.
  • Evaluation Forms: Prepare forms or digital tools (like SkillShark for basketball) to record player performances.
  • Staff Assignments: Ensure each coach or helper knows their role and what they’re evaluating.
  • Player Registration: Have a system in place for player check-in and information collection.

Looking For an Easier Way to Evaluate Basketball Players?

Using SkillShark, you can easily score basketball athletes using your smartphone or tablet. As scores are entered, data is automatically stored on the backend. When you are ready to deep dive into player insights, head to the SkillShark’s report section and simply click on which report you would like to run.

That’s it! No fighting with formulas and no diving into design work. Reports are ready for you to run.

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FAQ — Basketball Player Evaluations

The top drills for basketball tryouts designed to evaluate player skills include Dribble with Layup, Shuffle and Scoop, Move and Pass, Around the World, Quick Release, 2 on 2 Box Out, Two Line Layups, and Block Before Bounce. These drills assess a range of essential skills from ball handling, shooting accuracy, defensive positioning, to agility and teamwork.

An effective basketball tryout drill challenges players across multiple aspects of the game, including technical skills, decision-making under pressure, physical fitness, and teamwork. It should allow coaches to observe a player’s natural abilities, adaptability to game-like situations, and potential for growth, all within a controlled, measurable setup.

Drills for basketball tryouts are specifically tailored to evaluate a player’s individual skills, game intelligence, and physical attributes within a short period, providing coaches with the necessary insights to make team selection decisions. Regular practice drills, on the other hand, are often designed for player development, focusing on improving specific skills, strategies, and team dynamics over time.

SkillShark is a leading evaluation software and app designed to assist coaches in assessing and improving the performance of basketball players. It streamlines the evaluation process by providing instant feedback reports after each assessment, saving coaches valuable time compared to traditional data entry into spreadsheets.

Yes, SkillShark is a versatile tool suitable for evaluating athletes in various sports. While this blog focuses on basketball, SkillShark can be applied to multiple sports, making it a valuable resource for coaches across different disciplines.

Getting started with SkillShark is easy. You can request a free demo to learn how the app works and see if it suits your coaching needs.

There are no strings attached to trying out SkillShark, and the demo will provide you with valuable insights into its features and benefits.

• Customize evaluation templates
• Score athletes on your mobile device
• Instantly access player data
• Provide player report cards
• Compare & rank players
• Draft teams on the app

Some basketball dribbling exercises are :

Pound dribble ball: Players will remain stationary for this drill. With one hand, they will dribble the ball as hard as they can, while focusing on control and rhythm.
Crossover dribbles: Players will stand in place with feet a little wider than hip width apart. Using both hands, they will dribble the ball from side-to-side as it remains in from of their body.
Around-the-cone dribble: Set up pylons from one end of the court to the other, about 6-feet apart. Players will weave in and out of the cones, dribbling the ball without letting it bounce. If they lose control of the ball, they will have to go back to the first pylon and start the drill again.

Yes, SkillShark can be used for basketball evaluations across various skill levels, from youth players to professionals. Coaches can adapt the assessment criteria and templates to suit the developmental stage of the players they are working with.

If you have any more questions or need further information, don’t hesitate to reach out to SkillShark’s support team for assistance at support@skillshark.com

You can measure basketball players on skills such as:
• Defense
• Dribbling
• Passing
• Rebounding
• Shooting

1. Choose basketball tryout drills 2-3 weeks ahead of time.
2. Select evaluators 1 week before and communicate with them (i.e., run through the drills and explain what they should look for at each station they are evaluating).
3. Focus on positive relationships. Aside from coaching basketball tryouts, take the time to get to know athletes and provide verbal tips for improvement when you can.

SkillShark offers a free printable basketball tryout template. All you have to do is download and print, then you are ready to evaluate!

While we do offer a basketball evaluation form, we do recommend checking out the SkillShark app, removing pen-and-paper evaluations.

Brenton Barker

Brenton Barker: Former Professional Sports Coach/Manager // Brenton is an Australian with 20 years of experience working with professional athletes. These athletes have combined to win more than ten international events. He holds a Degree in Sports Coaching and was the former Head Advisor to the Japanese Government Sports Institute.