3 Simple Steps to Improve Your Rebounding

By Jeff Haefner

Rebounding is one of the most important, yet underrated skills in basketball. Of all the uncertainties that exist in basketball, the one constant is there will be missed shots. Whether a team shoots well or shoots poorly, often the winning or losing team is determined by what happens to the shots that are missed. The team that gets most of the rebounds gets additional offensive opportunities and that often translates into more points on the scoreboard, which usually means wins.

Becoming a better rebounder is simple and you can get there in 3 simple steps.

1) Conditioning

Basketball is a physical game. Running up and down the court over the course of a game will wear you out. In addition, there is a lot of physical contact. The closer you get to the basket, the more physical it gets. Remember, close to the basket is where most of the rebounds are. The combination of the running that you do during the game and the body blows you take while going after the glass is enough to wear anyone down. Often, rebounding comes down to a war of attrition, whoever is left standing at the end wins. The better condition you are in, the longer you can last on the glass. You will find that being in great condition will allow you to get rebounds at the end of the game that you might not be able to get early in the game.

Conditioning is a great equalizer. A player that is bigger and stronger than you are in the beginning of the game might not be so effective at the end of the game if you are in better condition than he is.

2) Knowledge

Just knowing a couple of things will drastically improve your chance of getting a rebound.

First, know personnel, especially your teammates. If you know other players tendencies, when they shoot and from where, you will greatly enhance your chances of grabbing misses. Knowing when shots will be taken will give you a quicker start to the glass and allow you to get better position than your opponent.

Second, knowing where the ball is going to go will also give you a great advantage over your opponent. The simple fact that 80% of all missed shot rebound at the same or opposite angle should give you a head start on the rebound. What that means is, if a shot is taken from the corner, 80% of the misses will rebound back toward the same corner or over the rim to the opposite corner. Shots taken from the wing will rebound either back toward the wing or toward the opposite wing 80% of the time.

Knowing these two things will put you in great position to collect any missed shots

3) Technique

You don’t have to jump over tall buildings or be stronger than a locomotive to be a good rebounder. You need good rebounding technique.

You don’t have to know a lot of things, only how to swim. What does that mean? A swim move is simple, quick and effective.

This is how to execute a swim move. The objective is to get your inside hip and inside shoulder past your opponent. As your defender either steps to box you out, don’t fight his pressure, use it against him. As he steps out, step inside of him with your inside leg (the leg closest to your defender on the side you want to beat him on). At the same time, use your inside arm (the arm on the same side as your inside foot) and “swim” over the top of his shoulder. It is called a “swim” because it is essentially the same stroke you use when you are swimming in a pool. The “swim” will allow you to get your inside shoulder past your defender. When timed properly, you will find yourself between the basket and your defender and in excellent position for the rebound.

Rebounding is an important part of the game of basketball and it is vital to the success of your team. With these 3 simple concepts you can improve your rebounding and become a significant factor in the success of your team and make you an invaluable asset to any team you are a member of.