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PostPosted: 28 Jul 2021, 10:35 

Posts: 3
Location: Bedford, UK
Hi All,

I have been coaching a new girls team here in the UK for almost a year now and was hoping to gather some tips on how to get them to not be so nice to each other. As weird as it may sound...

I coach 2 girls sessions. (currently not in any kind of league)
U16 - mixture of U14 & U16

I find that they aren't hungry enough to get the ball back on defense around the rim (not all players) but they are more than happy to watch the opponent shoot, wait to see what happens and then go for the rebound if the shot is missed.
I think it stems from playing 'Netball' which is where some of my players have converted from. As in Netball, you aren't allowed to tackle a player whilst shooting.

I've tried numerous drills to improve competitiveness and during the drill, they aren't shy to go all out, but as soon as it comes to playing FC game, they just don't have the desire to stop the ball. They do try, but as soon as they are beat, they give up and then don't fight to re gain position. They will allow their player to dribble past them and they are quite happy to watch a player shoot and not block the ball.
Again, its not all players, but quite a few.

I know fatigue plays a big part and maybe defensive knowledge of what they can or can't do on defense, but was hoping to get some advice on how to get them hungry for the ball.
I have players with some real potential and i feel this is their next step in development.
I understand this could also just be a personal trait that needs to be coached.

Most of the U12 girls have no issues at being aggressive. Its great to see how far they have come in their development, but some of the U16 girls struggle to find it in themselves to not give up.
I have picked up many new players post Covid so i have many players with mixed abilities.

As there isn't a league for any girls teams around my area, i also feel this plays a big part. I think once they go against another team, they will soon realize what it takes to play basketball. We do have a couple girls teams around which we are setting up friendly's with.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you

Coach David
Girls Program Lead/Coach


PostPosted: 31 Jul 2021, 21:41 

Posts: 9
Coach David,

Your problem is somewhat a common problem for many coaches, maybe not to the same degree you are having the problem. There are several different ways you can try to combat the problem.

Start by talking to your briefly about one of your goals for the team is for them to be aggressive in practice and in games and then you can give them examples of what that might look like: not quitting on plays, going after lose balls, rebounds, and diving on the floor for loose balls....etc. They need to first understand what you are looking for and what examples of aggressive play looks like on the court. Then make sure when you see players being aggressive you compliment and point this out to the team.

Next make sure you incorporate drills into every practice that encourage aggressive play. Be consistent with this. Make sure every practice plans has drills that will encourage your players to be aggressive. One great drill I've done with players for years starts with 2 at the FT line and one ball on the floor between them. The coach will blow their whistle and on the whistle both players try to grab the ball from the floor. THERE ARE NO JUMP BALLS! So if both players grab the ball at the same time, whoever can pull in away from the other player is now on offense and tries to score immediately while the player who didn't get the ball guard them and tries to stop them. They get one shot only, then they start over by setting the ball down on the floor at the FT line. This should be taking place at as many hoops as you have in your gym and two players starting at each hoop when you blow the whistle. So if you have 6 baskets in the gym, 12 players are going on each whistle. Go 2 or 3 times and then have some players rotate so they go against a different partner.

This is an example of a great drill to teach competitiveness and aggressiveness in practice and an example of the types of drills you'll need to have in every practice.

Another ideas would be to do lots of "make it take it" games. So many you have your players going 3v3 at hoops. Have players keep score. For make it take it, if a team scores, they get the ball on offense until the defense gets a stop. If they do get a stop, the defense goes to offense and they get to stay on offense as long as they keep scoring. Usually you will start to see kids get tired of being on defense and they start to play harder and more aggressive so they can get a stop and go to offense.

You likely won't see huge gains overnight, but if it is an emphasis in your practices, I'm sure you will soon start to see gradual improvements throughout the season.

Hope this helps and good luck!

Mark Brase
Breakthrough Basketball

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