Hard-Nosed Attitude Makes a Great Defender

Attitude & Defense

It doesn’t take a genius coach to know a tough, hard-nosed attitude makes a defensive team special. We can teach all the actions, rotations, help situations, and points of pressure we want, but when players don’t fight hard to keep their opponent from scoring it really doesn’t’ matter. 

On the other hand, if players do not have great footwork, don’t use the proper defensive movement skills, and don’t have proficient speed and quickness, it will be a rough day at the office. 

Obviously having both is ideal. Look at the best defender in the game. They are quick, tough, and work all game long. 


Athleticism & Attitude

What are some staples to improve both athleticism and attitude:

  1. Teach the general and specific footwork that will translate to on-court movement. 
  2. Develop the player's ability to produce quick force (power) to move quickly.
  3. Use a medicine ball to help them learn how to gain stability quickly when changing direction and producing force. 
  4. Break down the specific footwork patterns like a snap-shuffle, power lateral run, waddle shuffle, wedge lateral run so they can be proficient at all situations on defense. 
  5. Show them how to defeat a screen.
  6. Teach them how to funnel the ball where you want it. 
  7. Create an odd number situation where there are 3-defender and 4-offensive players, etc…
  8. Reward high effort, and not always results. Get them to like working hard. 


There are many other ways, but these are staples of mine and how I get players to move better effectively and want to move better. 


Improve Defense Performance

Footwork Drills to Improve Performance:

  1. Snap Shuffle and Snap Lateral run- Attack small areas to keep the ball out of certain areas. 
  2. Power Shuffle/Power Lateral Run- Be able to shut down driving lanes and get into help quickly. 
  3. Wedge Lateral Run- Teach how to fight for space over a screen and take tight curls aways.
  4. Hip Turn to Power Lateral Run- Attack new space and take away opponent's space. 


These are killer footwork drills that all basketball players need to become great at. 


Change the Game

I can’t tell you how much I encourage you to take advantage of the best basketball-specific on-court speed course. With this knowledge, you will put yourself in a position to teach your players movement skills that will raise their game to a totally new level. Your defensive style will be able to be so much more aggressive and effective- teams will hate playing against your defense. 

Be one of a special group of coaches of Basketball Speed Specialist changing the game and how information is delivered to their players. We need more coaches like you to join the movement. 



Categories: : art of coaching, basketball footwork, basketball movement, basketball speed