Rookie Practice Plans

Welcome to the Rookie Level practice plans. The Rookie level focuses on having fun, being active, and learning the basic fundamental skills of basketball. There are three options for viewing these practice plans.

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Rookie Practice Plan 12

Cultivating Values & Developing Wellness

5%
5%

Respect: Parents

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  • Discuss how to show respect for parents.
  • Did our parents allow us or help us come to basketball
    practice?
  • In many cases, our parents are the most important, influential people in our lives. We owe them thanks for the good they provide and the love they show. One way to help players mind the importance of respecting their parents is to remind them their jerseys may have their parents’ names on the back; anyone watching the game will watch the players’ behavior and understand who raised them.

Warm Up

5%
5%

Run to That Line

(1 x 5 lines)
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  • Walk around the court with the players and identify spaces on the court (half court, 3-point line, sideline, and more).
  • Have the players repeat the names of each area you identify.
  • Choose from the movements below to provide the players with a movement to get to any space you choose to identify.
  • Announce both the way to get to the line or area and the line or area.
  • Movements to choose from: Forward March, Backward March, Lateral March, Forward Skip, Backward Skip, Lateral Skip, High Knees, Backward Run, Quick Feet, Side Push.
  • Example: “Everybody go with High Knees to the baseline!”

Key Points

Teach the players about the court while also teaching them proper execution of fundamental movement skills.

Forward/Backward/Lateral March

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  • These marches are fundamental movements that teach the players about proper running mechanics. Adding backward and lateral marches is essential for neurological variation in order to have success in subsequent movements.
  • Players will march by walking and pulling their knees up, toes up, and arm up at a 90 degree angle.

High Knees

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  • High knees replicates acceleration techniques by syncing the arm and leg actions. Be sure to cue arm action, encourage an elbow angle of approximately 90 degrees and promote movement at the shoulder. Proper leg action is demonstrated by an active drive of the knee upward while targeting the heel to the top of the hamstring and keeping the foot dorsiflexed (toes up). “Heel to hamstring” is an important cue in order to promote the proper shin angle. The players will run and quickly alternate bringing their knees high towards their chest.

Quick Feet

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  • Players should take numerous tiny, quick, short choppy steps as they move in a direction instructed. The activity gets the players’ bodies moving and their foot muscles firing while working their fast twitch movement.

Side Push

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  • Players should be in a slight athletic stance and move laterally by pushing off their back foot. The player should push off their left foot to move right and push off of their right foot to move left. It is important to emphasize pushing rather than stepping and pulling. This movement works hips, feet and balance.

Building Skills

70%
70%

Ball Handling

5-5-5 Creative Dribble

(1 minute)
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  • All players need a basketball (or share) and should stand on the baseline.
  • The players will get 5 seconds to dribble the ball with their right hand.
  • The players will then get 5 seconds to dribble the ball with their left hand.
  • The last 5 seconds the players will get to dribble creatively in any way that they want.
  • Repeat this process.
  • This should be a fun drill that allows each player to be creative with the ball.

Creative Cone Dribble Drill

(2 minutes)
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  • All players need a basketball (or share) and should stand on the baseline.
  • The players will be divided into groups.
  • The group will have 2 cones in front of them.
  • The players will dribble to the first cone and will make any creative dribble move at the cone.
  • The players will then dribble to the next cone and make any creative dribble move at the cone.
  • After the second cone, the players will dribble out and shoot.

Key Points

The players can work on fun creative moves with no pressure.

Shooting

Around the World

(1 game)
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  • Place five cones around the court as five shooting spots and divide the players evenly at the cones.
  • The first player in each line will have a basketball.
  • Each player will shoot the ball, get their rebound, and return to the back of that same line.
  • The players will cycle through so that each player gets 3 shots from that specific spot.
  • After these 3 attempts by everybody, all groups will rotate to the next spot and repeat until each team has shot at all five spots.
  • The team will count their total makes as they go around and the team with the most makes, wins.

Shooting Line Game

(2 games to 8 makes)
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  • Divide the players into two or more group lines and have each group at a designated shooting spot on the court.
  • The group lines will operate as a team and keep their score together.
  • The players will shoot one time, get their rebound, give it to the next player and return to the back of the same line.
  • Continue this drill until one team makes the designated number of shots. Then switch spots and repeat.

jrnba_rookie_pp1_shootinglinegame_diagram1jrnba_rookie_pp1_shootinglinegame_diagram2

Key Points

Have the players count the makes out loud for all teams to hear. Encourage the players to cheer for their teammates and utilize the shooting form they have worked on.

diagram

Passing

Jump Stop Pivot Pass Drill

(3 minutes mixing pivots and passes)
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  • Have the players divide into groups, hold a ball, and stand in a good stance on the baseline.
  • The players will dribble to the free throw line extended and jump stop and then forward/reverse pivots until they are facing their line again.
  • Have the players then pass back to the next player in line and continue the process.

Key Points

Help the players understand the importance of a good jump stop, good on balance pivots, good passes and showing a target.

Pass It Down the Line Game

(1 minute per group)
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  • Divide the players into 2 even groups with 1 group on both sidelines without a basketball.
  • Have the other group start with a basketball on the baseline.
  • The player with the basketball will pass the ball and receive the ball back from each of the players lined up on the sideline.
  • After they have made and received a pass from the last player, the player will dribble the ball to the basket for a lay-up.
  • After the lay-up, the player will get their rebound and continue by coming up the other side of the court.
  • This process will continue for 3 minutes.
  • Count how many lay-ups that team makes in 3 minutes before switching the groups.

jrnba_rookie_pp9_passitdownthelinegame_diagram1of6 jrnba_rookie_pp9_passitdownthelinegame_diagram2of6 jrnba_rookie_pp9_passitdownthelinegame_diagram3of6 jrnba_rookie_pp9_passitdownthelinegame_diagram4of6 jrnba_rookie_pp9_passitdownthelinegame_diagram5of6 jrnba_rookie_pp9_passitdownthelinegame_diagram6of6

Competing

10%
10%

Lay-Up Bowling

(1-2 games)
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  • Divide the players into 2 teams and have them line up on opposite baselines.
  • The coach will set up 3 cones about 2 or 3 feet apart on the opposite baseline from each teams’ line.
  • Each team will have 2 balls. 1 with the player in the front of the line and 1 off to the side.
  • The first player will dribble to the opposite end of the court and shoot a lay-up.
  • The player will dribble the ball all the way back to the next
    player in line.
  • If the player misses the lay-up, they will go to the back of the line, but if the player makes the lay-up, they will go pick up the extra ball to the side and bowl/roll it towards the cones at the opposite end.
  • If the player hits a cone, it counts as knocking it over and the coach will remove it.
  • The team to hit all 3 of their cones first will win.

 

diagram

1 on 1 Numbers Game

(games to 5)
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  • Assign 2 players to each number and have everybody stand on the baseline.
  • Throw the ball on the court and call out a number.
  • The 2 players with that number will go for the ball and whoever gets the ball will be on offense and the other on defense for 1 possession and 1 shot of 1 on 1.
  • Evenly mix up the numbers you call and the game is over when any player gets to 5 points playing by 1’s.

Key Points

Encourage the players to hustle to the ball and make efficient offensive moves to score. Also encourage the defensive player to move their feet and play active defense.

3 on 3 Numbers Game

(games to 3)
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  • Assign all players to a number in groups of 3 and have everybody stand on the baseline. The 3 players with the same number are teammates and will be playing together.
  • Throw the ball on the court and call out 2 numbers.
  • The 3 players with those numbers will go for the ball and whoever gets the ball will be on offense and the other 3 on defense for 1 possession and 1 shot of 3 on 3.
  • Evenly mix up the numbers you call and the game is over when any team gets to 5 points playing by 1’s.
  • There is a 3 dribble maximum each time a player gets the ball.
  • No screens can be set but cutting is allowed and encouraged.

Key Points

Encourage the players to hustle to the ball and make good team plays to score. Also encourage the defensive team to move their feet, play active defense and contest all shots.

Compliment Session

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  • Gather the players in the middle of the court and encourage them to raise their hand and give another teammate a compliment.
  • If needed, have the coach start the session by giving a compliment and let the players follow.

Key Points

All compliments should be natural. Not every player has to give or receive a compliment.

Skills Checklist

At the conclusion of the Rookie Level, Jr. NBA players should be proficient at each of the following skills. Judging proficiency at this level is the responsibility of the coach.

Ball Handling

    Passing

      Shooting

        Rebounding

          Footwork & Conditioning

            Offense

              Defense

                Other