Elbow Shooting Drill

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Drill Purpose (All Ages)

This drill provides practice in establishing a balanced, fluid, and consistent shot motion while moving into a shot in both directions. In particular, it focuses on effective footwork.


elbow_shooting1 (1K)
  1. Ideally, have four players at a basket for this drill.

  2. Start the drill with a player in the shooting line just above the top of the key, a rebounder positioned near the basket on the off-side of the right-side shooting elbow, and two players in the passing line at the right wing, free throw line extended and outside the three-point line. The ball will be in a passer's hands to begin with.

elbow_shooting2 (1K)
  1. The shooter will do a jab step to the left and then cut to the right elbow.

  2. The passer will deliver a pass so that the shooter can step right into the shot using the left foot as the pivot foot.

elbow_shooting3 (1K)
  1. The rebounder throws the ball to the passing line, the initial shooter becomes the new rebounder, the initial rebounder joins the passing line, and the initial passer becomes the next shooter.

  2. Repeat the process from the opposite elbow, adjusting the rebounder position and passing-line position. Make sure that players use the right foot for the pivot foot when shooting from the left elbow.

  3. Continue the drill until all players have shot ten shots from both elbows.

Points of Emphasis

Continually tell your players...

  • Passes should be thrown to the shot pocket so that shooters don't waste energy repositioning the ball.
  • Shooters should catch the ball just as they arrive at the elbow. In other words, they should be on the move.
  • The left foot is the pivot foot.
  • The shooter should land in the same spot, or slightly in front of the spot, from which they started the shot.

Motivation / Teaching Tips
  • Have players keep a daily record of how many shots they make from each elbow.
  • Emphasize to shooters the importance of presenting target hands to passers.
  • Encourage players to operate at game speed.
  • Mix up the groups daily so that players get practice throwing to different teammates.
Do you have any questions or suggestions for this drill? Let us know by leaving your comments...


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shlomo says:
10/26/2013 at 9:17:05 AM

It also teaches how to give good passes and works one rebounding.


Rolando P. Cimafranca says:
12/10/2012 at 9:31:24 AM

This is good drill practice for our elementary and high school (32) kids who are presently enrolled without cost but to received free training from me.


steven says:
9/16/2010 at 6:12:32 AM

If you want to teach players to follow their shots, I use the following drill:
have them team up at the elbows (up to 4 teams, depending on the number of players).
Each team has one ball.

First in line takes the shot, if he scores the team get's two points. If he misses and catches the ball before it bounces on the floor he get's another chance from where he catched the ball for one point.

First team to 20 wins


michael says:
8/17/2008 at 9:25:18 PM

its a very good drill thank you


Perdig„o says:
5/27/2008 at 9:46:05 AM

This is good drill if you have 4 players, because if you have 5 or 6, they will be stoped for too long!

Also the "ratio" shots/minute isn't very good!

  1 reply  

Andy says:
12/14/2018 at 10:00:51 PM

IF you want more touches for your players, run it from both sides of the foul line, both left and right side at the same time. I may try to make that into a pregame shooting. Looks like a great drill.


larry white says:
2/24/2008 at 2:04:25 PM

good drill i will use it in my practice


cds says:
2/12/2008 at 7:11:33 AM

haha,my bro hated chalk board and thnx for u to help me to pass my project
I thank you


gary scott says:
1/16/2008 at 10:01:54 PM

its a good catch and shoot drill.


hossein says:
12/19/2007 at 3:57:00 AM

good drill for cordination practice


Joe (Co-Founder of Breakthrough Basketball) says:
12/6/2007 at 3:47:47 PM

In response to Mojo:

Yes, it's a good skill to teach your players to follow their shot. Although this is true, you want to be CAREFUL when teaching players to follow their shots. Often, players will take off so quickly after their shot that they develop or use bad form. NEVER SUBSITUTE GOOD SHOOTING FORM TO FOLLOW YOUR SHOT.


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