Shooting Form, Revisited

In my 2-and-a-half years at Shoot 360, I have been able to observe thousands of shooters. This has caused me to take a step back and think about how we, as coaches, teach shooting form. I think that sometimes we can overload our players with too much technical information. If we believe that there are 20 steps to create the perfect shot, the chances are most players will not be able to handle that much information. This is something I have done in the past. Over the past 3 years, I have simplified my methods of teaching shooting through observing players of all ages shoot the ball. This does not mean that I am right and others are wrong, this simply means that I have found it more effective to simplify rather than complicate. There have been 3 components that the top shooters all do.


Keeping the ball in a consistent shooting pocket is important. This involves good elbow alignment along with a bent wrist. I always tried to get players to keep their elbow directly under the ball, but I now feel as this is dependent on the build of the athlete. Some players simply cannot get in this position comfortably due to the mechanics of their body. The elbow shouldn’t be flared out to the side, but does not need to be directly under the ball.


Using your legs is crucial to developing a soft touch on your shot. Jumping as high as you can is not necessary; you can efficiently use your legs on a set shot. The important part is using your legs to gain momentum for the ball to be released from your hands. It’s more about timing than strength.


The flick of the wrist! Snapping your wrist is vital for proper rotation. When you release the ball, your fingers should end up pointing to the ground.

All this being said, REPETITION is the key to becoming a consistent shooter. Sharpen up your form, then get in the gym and get your shots up.