Basketball Coaching » Basketball Drills » Defensive Basketball Drills

Here’s a selection of my favorite defensive drills, including techniques for improving individual defense, team defense, and defensive communication. Give ’em a try – and make sure to leave a comment and let me know how they go!

4v3 Continuous

4v3 Continuous, enhances communication, positioning, and quick decision-making, making it ideal for players of all ages and skill levels.

Deny Flash Drill

The Deny Flash Drill is designed to teach defenders how to effectively deny offensive players access to the middle of the paint

Wing Deny

Wing Deny drill, aimed at teaching players the correct method to deny a wing entry pass.

Step Off

Step Off drill, exercise focusing on misdirection and quick directional changes to outmaneuver opponents and create scoring opportunities.

Tight Shell

This exercise focuses on teaching players how to effectively navigate and defend against downscreens and backscreens.

Shell Backscreens

Shell Backscreens drill, focusing on essential skills like communication, footwork, and play reading for both young and seasoned players.

Shell Downscreen

Enhance your basketball team’s defensive coordination against downscreens with our focused Shell Downscreen drill.

Boxout Drill

Boxing out is a way to block an opposing player with your body to prevent them from getting a rebound. This is a great drill that focuses on boxing out and hustling.

Reminder Slides

Even a player with great footwork needs a reminder every once in a while, otherwise they’ll get sloppy. That’s the goal of this drill –to work on footwork in a safe environment where there is no concern of an offensive player taking advantage.

One of the great tragedies of basketball is that the most important jobs in the game often get the least credit. We’ve all heard that defense wins championships, but scoring sells shoes. And because of this, players who excel in certain areas – your great screeners, the dominant rebounders, and the lockdown defenders – rarely get their due in the media and with the fans.

That’s a mistake you can’t make as a coach.  A lot of the time you’ll hear sports commentators talk about how being good at defense is just about effort. And while that’s true to a certain extent, it’s not just about trying hard. And frankly, saying so is an insult to the great individual defenders who spend all that extra time perfecting their craft.

If you’re interested in some more advanced training, make sure you check out the Team Defense Drillbook and Individual Defense Drillbook as well.

More Defensive Basketball Drills


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