Chair Pivot

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Drill Purpose

Teaches footwork, change of direction, shooting on the move.

Drill Instructions and Diagrams

This drill can be executed a few different ways depending on how many players are available. This explanation will concentrate on a player working alone.

  1. Place a chair, foul line extended, 15 feet out with the seat facing the basket. Place a ball on the chair. Player starts on the ball-side block.
  1. Player cuts to the ball and jump-stops.
  1. Player picks up the ball, puts it in a shooting position. Player then executes an inside pivot, using his baseline foot as a pivot foot (an inside pivot is one where the non-pivot foot is brought back toward the basket so that the player does a complete turn and finishes facing the basket).
  1. Player shoots. Player chases down the rebound. If shot was missed, player follows and scores. If shot was made, player gets ball out of the net.
  1. Player then dribbles back to the chair, executing a change dribble (crossover, spin, inside out, etc…) on the way.
  1. Player touches the seat of the chair with the ball, inside pivots and shoots again.


  1. Move chair beyond the 3-point line. Execute drill as above.
  1. When player pivots, he then makes a sweep move, opposite his pivot foot, for a 1 dribble shot.


  1. Execute drill as above.
  1. After inside pivot and sweep, player executes a counter move as if he has been cut off by the defense. Counter move can be a change dribble (crossover, etc.), pivot (drop-step a la Tim Duncan or step-thru) or shot adjustment (step-back jumper).
  2. Drill can be run be number of shots, number of makes or by time.
  3. Once drill is complete, take chair to the other side and repeat
  4. Once both sides are complete, start drill again using the top foot.

Teaching Points

  • Get low to get ball on the chair and stay low through the entire move until the shot.
  • After rebounding, test your ball handling back to the chair.
  • Dribble outside your comfort zone. Try dribbling moves you would not normally attempt.
  • Make your sweep dribble (2nd and 3rd progression) long. Cover as much ground as possible with the dribble.
  • Use the dribble to get closer to the basket, not to the side.

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What do you think? Let us know by leaving your comments, suggestions, and questions...


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Joe Haefner says:
8/2/2013 at 9:30:37 AM

James, I have always used the same terminology as you. Different coaches sometimes use different terms for the same thing.

I've always taught the pivot in these pairs.

Front - Back
Forward - Reverse

However, I've heard some coaches call a back/reverse pivot as in this situation, an inside pivot.


James says:
7/21/2013 at 1:08:49 AM

Interesting definition of an inside pivot. Here in Australia we describe one as using the foot to the inside of the court (closest to the split-line). Thus always a forward pivot (regardless if cutting to the basket or away).

Your description " inside pivot is one where the non-pivot foot is brought back toward the basket so that the player does a complete turn and finishes facing the basket." sounds more like a reverse pivot. Does depend of course if you mean backwards when you say 'back'.

Outside pivot is the foot furthest from the inside of the court, thus a reverse pivot.


Ken Sartini says:
5/7/2013 at 10:19:18 AM

Megan -

I think that it all depends on how old you and where you want the game to take you. JMO


Megan says:
5/7/2013 at 12:16:56 AM

This is an awesome website. It would be great if it had more demonstration drills. also it gives lots of helpful advice. I am wondering though how long every day should you train for the sport of your dreams


Malek says:
11/3/2012 at 5:22:35 PM

Would be great if you guys have a video demonstration for each drill , but great website . thank you guys


Jeff Haefner says:
4/5/2012 at 8:00:56 AM

All the drills should print for you and format automatically. I just tried printing (clicking File and Print) and it worked for me.


ruther1 says:
4/4/2012 at 2:33:25 PM

How do you print these pages so you see the diagrams?


nyree says:
12/4/2011 at 9:21:56 PM

it would be great if we could see videos but this is easy to understand thanks


Jeff Haefner says:
1/27/2011 at 4:10:10 PM

A sweep is a type of footwork. In making a pivot, you have a pivot foot – the foot that does not leave the ground – and the swing foot – the foot that steps and actually affects the pivot. A “right foot pivot” would be a pivot where the right foot stays on the ground and the left foot is the swing foot. A “left foot pivot” is a pivot where the left foot stays on the ground and the right foot is the swing foot.

A sweep can be done after a front pivot, reverse pivot, or a jump jumpstop. So after pivoting to a feet square position, player sweeps his swing foot in the same direction (right foot is the swing foot, right foot sweeps to the right).


Dennis says:
1/26/2011 at 1:52:10 PM

What is a sweep?


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