3 Drills to Become a Lightning-Quick Shooter

Basketball, like most sports, is a game of inches. Great shooters like Ray Allen and J.J. Redick need just an inch of separation from their defender to get their shot off. As a player progresses from middle school to high school to college, it becomes more and more obvious that you need to be more than just a great shooter. You need to be a great, QUICK shooter.

Here are three great shooting drills that teach you to get your shot off quickly.

Partner Shuffle Shots

Line up with your heels touching the 3-point line. Grab a partner that can rebound for you, as well as critique your shot. Take a shot and slowly shuffle around the inside of the 3 point line. Continue shooting until you have made 25 shots and then switch.

Keys to the drill:

  • Don't shuffle too fast. You just want to slowly keep your feet moving. This drill isn't for your feet; it's for your hands.
  • ALWAYS keep your hands ready in your shooting pocket. As soon as you finish the follow-through, get your hands back in the shooting pocket.
  • Have the partner watch and see if the ball dips right before you shoot after you catch the pass. Your partner should pass the ball directly into your shooting pocket, and it should immediately go straight into your shot. You should NOT lower the ball.
  • Really focus on getting your shot off as quick as possible.

Partner Quick Hands

Line up with your heels touching the 3-point line. With the ball in your hand, get set into your shooting position. Your partner will stand directly in front of you with his hand on the ball. The partner will quickly remove his hand from the ball, slap his thigh, and then try to block your shot. As soon as your partner removes his hand, shoot the ball.

Keys to the drill:

  • Shoot as quickly as possible but don't rush your shot.
  • The partner should finish the drill with his hand directly in your face.

Partner Close Outs

Your partner will start with the ball underneath the basket. Your toes will be touching the 3-point line, and your back will face the basket.

Your partner will smack the ball. As soon as you hear that sound, you'll quickly turn 180 degrees and face the basketball with your hands ready for the pass in your shooting pocket. Your partner will pass you the ball, and immediately sprint at you to block the shot. You must find the ball, then find the rim, and get your shot off before your partner gets to you. If it's too easy, have your partner start closer to you.

Keys to the drill:

  • Don't cheat. Make sure your back is to the basket. The goal of the drill is for you to quickly find the ball, then the rim, and still get a good, quick shot off without being blocked. Cheating defeats the entire purpose of the drill.
  • Be quick, but don't rush the shot. If your form looks bad, have your partner start farther away from you. A shooter and his partner can perform two circuits of those three drills and make 150 shots in around 20 minutes.

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