PIVOTING is a skill that coaches sometime assume the kids just know how to do. When you think about growing up and learning how to play, do you remember a time when you were taught to pivot? It not unusual to find that pivoting was not something taught to most players.
However, PIVOTING is one of the most important skills to learn in establishing a sound foundation of basketball fundamentals. Think about squaring to basket, blocking out for a rebound, rolling after a screen, drop stepping, deep stepping, and getting away from defensive pressure after a used dribble, they all involve PIVOTING.
Most right handed players will be more comfortable pivoting on their left foot and left handed players will prefer their right foot as pivot foot. Seems backward, but if you think about it, your non-pivoting foot and leg do all the work. So a right hander, with a left pivot foot, is using their right leg and foot to do the work - it's good to talk to the kids about this.
We teach symmetry and that all players should learn to use both feet to pivot. It's just good to point out to the kids that they will be more comfortable with a certain pivot foot, and have to work a little harder to develop the other. Similar to that left handed layup - what an advantage when you can use both sides equally well.
H O O P E R X P I V O T I N GX T I P S
PIVOTING WITH THE BALL
Hold the ball waist high with your feet shoulder width apart. The right foot is your pivot foot. Take one step to the left and push the ball to the far left keeping the ball low to the ground and to the left of your foot. Pivot forward half way around and push the ball over your head. Repeat this sequence twice forward and twice backward with the same pivot foot. Switch pivot feet and repeat the drill.
You begin with the feet shoulder width apart. Start with the right foot as the pivot foot. Put all of your weight on the ball of the right foot. Now shift your weight to the left foot. Move your right foot forward making a circle around the left foot and swivel on the ball of the left foot. Make three turns each time. Now do the same thing moving backward. Do this exercise slowly and get a feel for the movement. Switch pivot feet using your left foot. Repeat this drill by doing 10 pivots for each foot.
PIVOTING WITH DEFENSE
The offense begins with the right foot as the pivot foot with the ball waist high. The defense tries to go after the ball without fouling. The defense should move around the offense for the ball instead of reaching for it. The offense pivots backward and forward holding the ball in different positions. The defense tries to take the ball for 10 seconds at a time. The offense should switch pivot feet, repeat the drill and switch to defense.
Time to get to work,