According to USA Basketball, the National Governing Body for basketball in the United States, rebounding is one of the most important phases in basketball.
Why? Well, it’s simple: it’s a brilliant opportunity to give a team possession of the ball. Something every player wants. When a team is in possession of the ball, it helps both the team’s defense and offense. In short, it prevents the opposing team from scoring field goals and helps your team win the game.
As they say in the world of basketball, you can shoot too much, dribble too much and pass too much. But you can’t rebound too much. Let’s take a look at the top tricks for rebounding in basketball.
What Is Rebounding In Basketball?
As we mentioned, rebounding in basketball is when a player gains possession of the basketball. This would normally occur after a three-point field goal, a missed field goal, or a free-throw attempt.
There are basically two kinds of rebounds in basketball: offensive rebounds and defensive rebounds. Offensive rebounds are called when the ball is recovered by the offensive side and does not change possession. With defensive rebounds, the defending team gains possession of the ball after an offensive player misses the shot.
Defensive rebounds occur more often than offensive rebounds because the defensive team is normally closer to the basket. They can gain greater access to a rebound by boxing out or positioning themselves between the basket and an opponent.
5 Tricks For Rebounding In Basketball
1. Time Your Jump
Two of the biggest names in rebounding in basketball are Dennis Rodman and Charles Barkley, who were known for their precision jump timing. Timing your jump comes with practice and means you launch yourself into the air to grab the ball at the exact second when it is at its highest point.
Timing a jump is especially important for basketball players who aren’t talented jumpers, to begin with. It helps them break free of the box, maximize their vertical leap, and more easily retrieve the rebound.
Practice your timing at home by throwing the ball off the wall and grabbing the ball at the peak of its rebound. Work on getting the ball as high as you can.
Pro Tip For Shoes That Help You Jump Higher
The right shoes can make all the difference to your jump. We recommend Nike LeBron XVII Low Unisex shoes. Their bouncy outsoles and excellent midsole cushioning help you jump higher while providing much-needed cushioning for safe landings.
2. Check The Direction Of The Shot
Regardless of where the shot comes from, you want to position yourself on the other side of the basket. This gives you the best statistical chance to grab the rebound because should the ball hit the rim or backboard, the chances are higher that the ball will go long or off the backside.
Whether you’re playing defensive or offensive while rebounding in basketball, always play the backside of the shot more than the front side. So if your opponent is getting ready to shoot, position yourself on the opposite side rather than on the same side and you’ll likely snag the rebound.
3. Jump High With Arms Extended
As soon as your opponent tries to score a field goal, start moving. Jump high, with your arms raised up while the ball is in motion following the rebound. Grab the ball with both hands and ‘rip it down’ towards you.
Keep your elbows extended and protect the ball by pivoting away from any offensive players. Now “chin” it, by bringing the ball under your chin while keeping your elbows out. Be careful not to throw and elbow – that’s a foul and it will cost you.
4. Perform An Outlet Pass
After a rebound, it’s a good idea to perform an outlet pass to easily push the ball up the court. An outlet pass is when a defensive player rebounds the ball and passes it to a teammate. He/she then moves the ball up the floor and the team transitions into offense mode.
An outlet pass allows the team that has just gained possession to achieve a fast break. A fast break means your team can move the ball up the court before enough defenders can get back into position to contest a shot.
5. Hold Your Box Out
While many assume you have to be able to jump high or be tall to be a good rebounder, that’s not necessarily true. Many of the game’s best rebounders are smaller players who know how to effectively position themselves before the rebound happens. This skill is known as ‘boxing out’ or ‘blocking out’.
Boxing out is when a basketball player takes a protective position around the hoop so that he or she can block an opposing player. Box out drills teach players court awareness, body position, and to visualize how a missed shot will bounce off the backboard or basket rim.
To box out, place yourself between your opponent and the net. Then, using your body, form a solid wall between your opponent and the hoop and stay low to prevent them from jumping when the ball is in the air.
Crowds love it when a player dunks or makes a three-point shot in the final seconds of the game. It demoralizes the opposing team and can ensure a win.
What’s more likely to happen in those last moments, though, is you’ll have a chance to secure a defensive or offensive rebound. For the losing team, a defensive rebound gives them a last shot at winning.
The same goes for the leading them: if they secure the rebound, they will most likely score, and it’s game over for the other team.
Practice drills around these five tricks for rebounding in basketball and empower yourself and your team to come out winning game after game!