Speed Dribble and Lay-Up Relay Race

By Fabio Fogato

Drill Purpose

This is a fun and competitive drill that helps players to improve their speed dribble and lay up under pressure in fast break situations.


  1. Divide your players in two balanced teams. Each team lines up on a corner of the same baseline as shown in the diagram.

  2. The first player of each line gets a ball. On the coach's signal the drill starts.

  3. Each player has to dribble fast towards the basket at the other end of the court for a lay up (keep shooting until he/she makes it).

  4. When the lay up (or the subsequent shot) is made, get the rebound and dribble back to the other basket for another lay up (again: keep shooting if miss).

  5. Pass the ball to the next teammate, who begins the same routine.

  6. The team that finishes first is the winner.


Put emphasis on competition! Encourage players to cheer their teammates.
You can establish rewards for the winners or penalties for the losers.

Teaching Tips:

- In speed dribble push the ball forward in front of you (the palm of your hand is behind the ball), bounce it higher then normal and run fast.

- The players should always dribble and execute the lay ups with the hand closest to the sideline. So they have to use both right and left hand (this does not apply to younger kids).

- If any player fail to make the lay up, they must react quickly grabbing the rebound and shooting again.


- Give two balls to each team. The second player starts when the first player has executed his lay up (this only applies to the first run). This variation is highly recommended if you have two teams of 4 or more players.

- You can arrange games best of three.

- If you have poor skilled players, you can allow them to continue the drill anyway after a given number of failed shooting attempts.

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


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Dave May'nard says:
3/14/2015 at 6:37:06 PM

Clarificaion regarding the variation: Give two balls to each team. The second player starts when the first player has executed his lay up: I'm assuming that this means when the first player makes a basket, either when doing the layup or rebounding and shooting until made. Is this correct? It is possible for the second player to lap the first.
(this only applies to the first run). What do you mean by the first run?


mollautt says:
3/11/2015 at 11:05:46 AM

=>Only issue with the drill is while those 2 players are running the floor, the rest of the team is standing in lines. I have always favored games and drills where everyone is active.

For example, if you have a small roster of just 8 players, that is still 75% of the time standing and waiting. 80% if roster is 10 players. 83% if have a roster of 12.

If the drill goes fast and the players do not have to wait long for their turns, it is still 75% of the time (on an 8 player team) standing waiting for a turn to do a drill that only last a few seconds.

If you have 4 practice hoops on the sides of the court, you can play this relay with 4 teams (i.e. teams of 2 if have 8 players, 3 if have 12, and some players can go more often if the team numbers are not equal). That way each player gets more work in.


Xavier Vicente says:
3/11/2015 at 10:21:12 AM

Thanks, very good drill. For kids from 8 to 12, in 2015 is all about fastbreak an lay ups.


Ian says:
3/11/2015 at 4:42:55 AM

It sounds ideal for those that won't get tired after running that far ( younger, smaller players ), but will definitely give it a go.


tom richards says:
3/10/2015 at 3:46:30 PM

there are right and left handed lay ups for each team in the normal drill. right one end and left the other end, just opposite ends for each team.


Angel says:
3/10/2015 at 3:31:06 PM

I do this drill with 10 and 9 years old is great for competition pourpose and put some pressure on them.
I do this variation
1. In front of the basketball throw to the table outlet pass and competitive layup.


Bob says:
3/10/2015 at 3:22:52 PM

We run a different version of this drill where the teams start at opposite ends of the court. This eliminates the unfairness of one team only doing lefties and the other have the advantage of doing RH layups. We also run it as a head to head race where the person to make it last gets eliminated. The team who eliminates all the other players wins.

  1 person liked this. 1 reply  

Kevin says:
3/10/2015 at 3:30:01 PM

We run it from opposite ends as well. Not only does it eliminate the RH/LH advantage, it has teams shooting on opposite goals so fewer collisions or one ball knocking another out.


Alex says:
3/10/2015 at 2:32:00 PM

I like this idea and really appreciate the drills and ideas from this web site. I have a general question, and that is will these drills work going across court. I share the gym floor with another team and cannot use the full court. But we do have baskets going across the court.

  1 reply  

Colin says:
3/10/2015 at 3:20:17 PM

Having access to half a court needs to be a bit more inventive, you could place cones at half way and have them dribble to the cone, make a dribble move and power back to the hoop.


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