5 Out Motion Offense
The 5 out motion is for teams with 5 players that can play on the perimeter and will play with no post player.

In the 5 out motion, players are spaced around the perimeter. I like to use the 3 point line as a guide.

Players can pass and screen or pass and cut. Off the ball they may down-screen, flare screen or back-screen. They can screen or stagger screen for cutters coming out of the middle.

Players may dribble penetrate and look to score or dish.

Players may cut through the middle but can not cut and stay in the post nor can they post up. The object of the 5 out motion is to keep the middle open for cutters and dribble penetrators so the players can exploit match-ups on the perimeter.

Related Articles & Products

How To Develop a High-Scoring Motion Offense - Instructional Guide To Building Your Motion Offense.

Do You Recommend The Motion Offense To Youth Teams?

Cutters - Easy 5 Out Motion Offense

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

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Ray says:
12/25/2010 at 3:10:39 PM

Hey Joe/Jeff;

so I am teaching this 5 out m.o..I haven't had a chance to use it yet - since the league starts in the New Year, but my question is what are the more common ways one expects to score off of this? Dribble drive? Basket cuts? backdoor cuts? all of the above? I have read over all the material on your website on the 5 out - I just want to make sure I am coaching it correctly and perhaps what to emphasize with grade 6,7,8 kids that have not played before. Thanks.


Joe Haefner says:
12/28/2010 at 6:59:56 PM

Ray, it looks like you're off to good start in regards to understanding what different ways you can score. If you haven't taken a look yet, the open post offense DVD is a great resource: http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/pr/perkins-open-post-offense.html

With a group of 7th graders, I like to teach the option where they pass and cut and the players fill the open spots. If the defender overplays, the offensive player goes back door.

Eventually, I like to add down screens, ball screens, and dribble hand offs for youth teams. However, progress slowly. With our team, I'm just trying get through cutting and down screens for their first year with me.

  1 reply  

Reinhard says:
6/17/2019 at 9:49:14 PM

Where can I buy a used set of dvds


Joe Haefner says:
12/28/2010 at 7:01:21 PM

Ray, I forgot to add that I teach them how to move when dribble penetration occurs.

Here is what the cutting portion of the 5 out would look like: http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/offense/cutters.html


Ray says:
1/2/2011 at 3:59:28 PM

Thanks Joe! I will take your advice. Two more thoughts:
1.) is it worth videotaping any of our games so the kids can see what they are doing - i.e.: using it as a teaching tool. Or is that basically a waste of time - kids don't generally watch bball DVD's .

2.) I have read the cutter offence as described in your website, but am not positive what you mean when you say teach them how to move during dribble penetration. How do they move differently during dribble penetration? Thanks for your help.



Joe Haefner says:
1/3/2011 at 9:22:06 AM

Ray, I wouldn't spend a lot of time on the video taping, but you could put together a few clips of them doing some things well and doing some things not so well. If you keep it 5 to 10 minutes, it might be helpful.

For dribble penetration, it depends on where the offense is located and where the defense is located. For example, if I dribble penetrate along the baseline and there was a post player on the block, the post player could move up to the elbow to create space. The opposite wing could drop to the corner to create a passing lane.

That's just one example.


Ray says:
1/3/2011 at 4:07:08 PM

That makes sense - thanks again for your help!


paul says:
1/27/2011 at 11:11:34 AM

I am going to try and implement this with a girls youth team. It seems simple enough to teach/learn, and as you mentioned, you can add additional movements (down screens, etc.) once they master the basics. I do have a few questions, though:

For a youth team, what would you do if the defense plays very tight on the person with the ball--so tight that she is unable to make a pass to the cutter? I would probably tell the player to drive or have the nearest player set a ball screen.

How will this offense work if the defense plays 3 steps off the offensive players?


Jeff Haefner says:
1/27/2011 at 4:01:15 PM

Paul - it completely depends on the age of the players, their skill level, what they are good at, etc. So it's hard to say. One option that works well for young kids is to simply have a rule that...
"the two closest players to the ball, screen for the two farthest players". This is a simple rule that allows for movement and pressure releases. If they accidentally set a double screen, that's ok. You really can't mess it up. They just move, try to follow the rules, and maintain their spacing. A motion offense is what ever you want to make it. You add the rules.


Garrett says:
11/14/2011 at 7:07:06 PM

Well i learned this from a coach in the JR. High/Middle School division. DOes anyone know if it would be helpful running it with kids that didnt make the team for Jr. High.


daryl says:
12/10/2012 at 8:36:50 AM

What is a good age or grade to start teaching the motion/ read and react offense?


Joe Haefner says:
12/11/2012 at 11:51:22 AM

Daryl, as soon as kids start playing, I start teaching principles of the motion offense such as spacing, cutting, and screening.

My first progression for teaching offense is 5out cutters.


If you have a choice, teach 3v3 until they reach 5th or 6th grade.


Coach Mac says:
12/28/2012 at 11:35:12 AM

I love the 5 out motion and love Coach Perkins DVD. Big inside players are hard to find these days in youth basketball so you can train bigs to become guards early in the development process. One thing I would like to also incorporate is a good 4-Out-1-in Offense just in case I get that one special post players. Any recommendations?


Joe Haefner says:
12/28/2012 at 1:03:02 PM

Coach Mac,

This is what I've done in the past when I've had some good post players.

To keep things simple, I tell them the rules are the same. Pass and move. Keep proper spacing. Don't stand still for too long.

When passing the ball in the post and the player decides to cut rather than screen away, I show them how to cut high to the elbow or low across the baseline to ensure proper spacing.

That's been very easy for me to implement with 7th and 8th grade teams.

One season we had multiple good post players, so I did two things:
1. Called out name of player I wanted in post.
2. From the 5-out, I let them cut and post if they felt they had an advantage.

To avoid confusion, I told them to put their hand up when they wanted the ball. If they are going to cut out of the post, put their hand down.

I also make sure not put the player in the post every possession, so they learn perimeter skills as well.


Coach TC says:
1/2/2013 at 6:15:50 AM

Hi Joe and Jeff,

First of all: What a great website you've built here! Lots of inspiration and vital info! Keep it up!

Now, my question: I am coaching a mixed 6th grade team, and we're basically playing 5 ot motion. The good news is that we get quite a good ball and leg movement going for players 1,2 and three (they pass, cut, screen, screen away) and produce opportunities off the movement. So this is where the action is.

At the same time, I am struggling to get players 4 and 5 more involved. Even though the occasionally cut to the basket, they hardly get the ball (1,2, and 3 being preoccupied with each other).

Other than that, they go for rebounds, but more often than not get pretty static because they are not involved that much in the offense action.

Any tips on moves, drills etc that

a) increases the awareness among the perimeter players for cutters deep in the post?

b) helps players in 4 or 5 to move more efficiently and get more involved?

Thanks, TC


Jeff Haefner says:
1/2/2013 at 8:05:03 AM

TC - Good question. We see the same thing and that's one of the big reasons we developed this DVD:

Those type of drills will help develop players 4 & 5 and eventually they will get comfortable. Beyond that just keep working with them. It's a process that takes some time. Creating drills that teach them how to get open and then do something with the ball help. We do a lot of cutting and screening drills that teach players how to get open and then score.

You can also call "designated shooter" in practice. You can call it discretely in a huddle or out loud. So the offense has to keep working until #5 gets a shot.

Hope this helps.


Jeff Haefner says:
1/2/2013 at 8:11:24 AM

TC - Also, if you running a 5 out cutting type of offense, it helps to enforce the rules...

- Watch the cutter all the way through
- Don't fill the open spot until the cutter clears (this improves timing and allows the passer to watch the cutter all the way through and then after that look at the guy filling)


Coach D says:
1/20/2013 at 2:42:35 PM

I just purchased the motion offense eBook and look forward to reading it ASAP. Thank you for the website. I'm coaching a group of 3rd grade boys, some that have never played before. Do you have a recommendation? It seems the 5-out is the way to go. Are there any drills, rules you recommend at this young age/beginner level? Also, obviously, there is a huge difference in skill level of the players. I don't want to hold back the better players, any recommendations?
Coach D


Matt says:
2/9/2013 at 11:42:36 PM


Thanks for putting up this site. Great resources. I was a High School Varsity Assistant for 7 plus years and recently found myself coaching my daughters 3rd and now 4th grade girls hoops club team. I went to the 5-0 motion this year and it has definitely helped improve the girls understanding of fundamental concepts of the game. The one drill that helped my team out the most was a having a girl at the top of the key and a coach on d in front of her. She passes to a wing,(with a light defender) and then does a basketcut towards the ball side(important that they set the coach up with a jab step opposite the way they pass before cutting). The wing then passes to the cutter for a jump shot or lay up. The area that is most difficult at the lower levels is the abilty of the passer to get the ball to the cutter around a defender. This drill has helped improve both cutting and passing.

One point on the 5-0 motion that needs to be addressed is how to enter into the offense. The screening angles are not optimal so their is a high risk of teams overplaying and getting a steal/fast break. I have switched mid season from getting the players into their spots as has been diagramed, to starting the offense with the baseline players exchanging and coming off a downscreen by the 2's and 3's. It has helped us get into the offense with a greater success for those teams out there without a strong point.

Thanks again for the site. Best of luck.



Bernie says:
10/5/2014 at 9:27:08 PM

my question is how does this work against zone defenses. I used it against a 2-1-2, not sure what zone it was to tell you the truth, but I spread my guys out in a 5 out motion and we get several easy looks at the basket in the paint! What are your thoughts coaches?
Coach Bernie
Vegas Elite

  1 reply  

Frank says:
12/3/2014 at 12:52:44 PM

If the are playing zone and you are winning keeping passing and cutting to the basket. They will have to come out the zone to defend. No reason to take a shot. Force them to play something they are not comfortable doing


Ken says:
12/3/2014 at 3:00:48 PM

My favorite wa y of playing the game! In fact..... I would do that IF I didn't like the tempo, winning or losing.

My philosophy was to control the tempo.


Brad Smith says:
1/1/2015 at 10:15:16 AM


We run a 5 out and we rely heavily on screening and cutting to score. We only dribble to create a passing angle, get out of trouble, or Attack a closeout.

After a pass, the passer screens away while the new ball handler has to hold the ball for a 2 second count while the screening action develops.

The cutter must wait for his screen and set his man up. We teach this by walking his defender in. Once the screener arrives, the cutter reads his defender and makes the appropriate cut. He can curl, straight cut, backdoor, or flare.

The rule is "One to the Ball, One to the Hoop". If the cutter straight cuts to the ball, the screener cuts to the hoop and posts up. If the cutter curls, the screener pops back to the ball. We talk a lot about attacking the hoop vertically with cuts, post ups, and dribbles (attacking closeouts). We limit our kids to 3 dribbles.

One other rule that helps Attack the rim vertically are isolated Backdoor cuts and that is triggered by a defender stepping on the 3 point line while denying a ball reversal. When this happens, we automatically cut backdoor. We call it the "Read Line". We got that from Rick Torbett''''s Read&React Offense.

I hope that helps. Again, we score by attacking the rim vertically (north and south)

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James says:
1/31/2017 at 12:07:40 AM

Im coachin a 7th grade team and I'm trying to teach them how to replace each other when running 5 out, with screens and cuts... Any advice?

  1 reply  

Jeff Haefner says:
2/6/2017 at 11:53:03 AM

I think the simplest way to teach players the "replace" concept is with 5v0 half court drill:


Daniel says:
3/20/2017 at 7:35:37 PM

I play on my high school's JV basketball team as a Freshman and I was so excited but I end up playing not that much minutes for the season. Any advice on trying to get more minutes next season Thanks



Ian says:
5/9/2017 at 8:25:59 PM

I run 5-out whenever I can with my junior high team (7-9) no zones.. However I find a lot of teams play slack - not enough for zone, but off enough to where hard to penetrate or pass to cutter...and teams do it because players are skilled/strong/developed enough to shoot 3
Advice? I have other set plays but would like to run motion more


James says:
11/7/2017 at 11:32:28 AM

What are some tips to teach the basic of the motion offense to Kindergartners and 1st graders? Pass, cut, make sure all 5 positions are filled. What else should I be teaching my team of such young players? Any drills, etc. that I could use to implement the motion offense to this age group? How do I get them to move without the ball? They just want to stand there with their arms up or run right to the person with the ball.


  1 reply  

Jeff Haefner says:
11/7/2017 at 3:39:17 PM

Coach - For that reason and many others, we only play 3v3 games at that age. So I haven't even tried teaching 5 out motion with kids that young. I would avoid playing 5v5 if at all possible.

Otherwise I'd just play some 4v0 or 5v0 pass and cut drills in practice. Just use it as a warm up drill to practice passing, maybe pivoting, catching, and cutting. Then I'd just accept that games will be a complete mess with kids running to the ball, etc.

The main thing at this age is to have fun and frankly 5v5 is not a good game for kids this age... 1v1, 2v2, 3v3, 2v1, 3v1, and 3v2 are MUCH better games that are both beneficial and fun for the kids. You want them dribbling, passing, pivoting, and having lots of fun.


Akash says:
12/8/2017 at 9:50:04 AM

Every damn video requires 9.0 version of adobe


Akash says:
12/8/2017 at 9:51:13 AM

video requires version 9.0


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