In basketball, the left hand is often an afterthought. Players focus on developing their right hand, and their left hand is only used when necessary. However, if you’re looking to take your game to the next level, you need to start giving your left hand some attention. With a bit of practice, you’ll be able to dribble and shoot with both hands equally well.
Tips To Help You Improve Your Left Hand:[/su_heading]
To get better at dribbling with your left hand is to practice against pressure. Find someone who can apply pressure while you’re dribbling, and try to keep your composure. This will help you develop the muscle memory necessary to maintain control of the ball, even when someone is trying to take it away from you.
Start in a low stance with your left hand behind your back and your right hand in front. Quickly switch the position of your hands, bringing the ball across your body with your left hand while keeping your right hand behind your back.
As you crossover, keep the ball low to the ground and protect it with your body. Once you’ve crossed over, explode into a jump stop or dribble drive toward the basket. Practice this move with both feet to execute it left and right.
Work on your passing. When playing with friends or teammates, challenge yourself to use your left hand only to make passes. This will help you get used to using your non-dominant hand and increase your accuracy.
Shooting Close To The Rim:
Shooting close to the rim with your left hand can give you a big advantage on the court.
Defenders can easily block your shot when you’re using your right hand to shoot because they know how you will go. But if you can surprise them by using your left hand, they won’t be able to react in time.
Plus, shooting close to the basket with your left hand will force defenders to respect your ability to score from anywhere on the court. They’ll have to worry about you driving to the basket and finishing with either hand.
Practice floaters with your left hand. Floaters are a type of shot that is easy to control and perfect for limited space. To execute a floater, shoot the ball off the backboard and into the basket. They are tough to block and can be very effective.
Off-Ball Defensive Reflex:
To improve your off-ball defensive reflexes with your left hand, keep your feet shoulder-width apart and be ready to move in any direction. Keep your eyes up and focus on the ball handler at all times. When the ball-handler starts to dribble, quickly close out with your left hand while keeping your body between them and the basket.
On Ball Defense Reflex:
Use your left hand when you are on defense. This will help you stay in front of your opponent and make it harder for them to score. When on offense, use your right hand to dribble the ball and your left hand to shoot. This will help you keep the ball under control and make it harder for the defense to steal it.
How To Make Your Left Hand Stronger?
Drills With Ball:
To make your left hand stronger is by do drills with a ball. For example, try squeezing a tennis ball as hard as possible with your left hand for 30 seconds to start. You can also try holding the ball in your left hand and making circular motions with your wrist.
Drills Without Ball:
- Use A Rubber Band:
Attach a rubber band around your fingers and thumb on your left hand. Spread your fingers out as wide as possible, and then bring them back together. Repeat this motion 10-15 times.
- Clench Your Fist:
This is a simple one – clench and unclenches your fist repeatedly for 30 seconds to 1 minute at a time. You can do this several times throughout the day.
- Use Putty Or Modeling Clay:
Squeezing and shaping putty or modeling clay is great for improving the strength of your fingers and hand. Again, aim for 10-15 repetitions or 1-2 minutes of activity.
- Wrist Curls:
Sit with your forearm resting on a table or bench and your palm facing up. Use your other hand to help lift your fingers and thumb up towards your palm, then lower them back down. Repeat this for 10-15 reps.
Gym Work For Weak Hand:
Try using dumbbells or a barbell for curls. You can also try doing reverse curls and working on your grip using a chin-up bar or machine. Try bicep curls, triceps extensions, and shoulder presses.
As you get stronger, you can increase the weight of the dumbbell. These exercises will help to improve your strength and skill.
For the best results, focus on working for your left hand separately from your right hand, and make sure to increase the weight gradually over time.
Becoming ambidextrous in basketball has its advantages. It opens up opportunities to play all positions on the court and become a versatile player. Although it is not easy, it is possible with enough practice and dedication. Following the above tips should help you improve your left hand in basketball.
Clyde Jackson III is a basketball coach and the founder of GCBC Basketball, a basketball-related learning and informational website that focuses on helping young players develop their skills on and off the court. With over 15 years of coaching experience, Clyde has worked with players of all ages and skill levels, from beginners to professionals.