As young athletes prepare for basketball season, they can use a variety of basketball drills to help improve their skills on the court. Basketball for kids should be fun and that´s why we have put together the 5 best basketball drills for middle school players. 

There should be nothing stopping youth basketball players from improving in basketball. Even the youngest players can work on their ball handling, shooting skills, basketball passing drills, and basic fundamentals. 

So whether you need advanced or beginner drills, we have you covered with some basics here in this article, and also on our app where we have 180+ videos that will take your game to the next level. If you get the basic version or the premium version, you will get access to some serious knowledge that teaches players how to be successful.

What are the basic drills in basketball?


Here are the five basic drills in basketball, briefly described:


  • Dribbling drills focus on improving ball-handling skills like control, speed, and quickness. Examples include the cone drill and figure 8 drill.
  • Passing drills help players improve their accuracy and decision-making when passing. Examples include the two-man passing drill and hot potato drill.
  • Shooting drills focus on accuracy and form. Examples include the form shooting drill and game-situation shooting drill.
  • Rebounding drills help players improve their ability to grab rebounds off the rim. Examples include the box-out drill and jump ball drill.
  • Defense drills focus on improving a player´s ability to defend against an opponent´s offensive moves. Examples include the man-to-man defense drill and zone defense drill.


Top 5 Basketball Drills for Middle School basketball. 

We will put these drills in a broad category, and then give you a few options with each depending on what you may have available to you. These drills will help prepare you for high school, and hopefully you can hit the ground running when you get there. 

  1. Ball Handling

In middle school it is very important to make your ability to handle the ball priority #1, you can spend the most time here because you don’t need access to basketball hoops, just a ball and a desire to get better. Because from your ability to handle the ball your ability to do everything else will grow. We think these are a few good options that you should be doing to work on your driblling skills: 

  1. By Yourself: Wall Touches.
  2. With a friend: Wall Touches but make it a competition (kids love competition).
  1. Passing Drills

Passing is one of the most underrated skills in basketball. A lot of people think they are good passers, but very few actually are. It’s an art, and you have to practice it and spend time to be good at it. Here is what we suggest: 

  1. Yourself:  Bounce Pass Wall Passing. With this you can also make chest passes, and you can even add a second ball to the mix and do two ball wall passing(requires two balls and a wall), where you dribble one ball the entire time and pass it with one hand. Then switch 
  2. Group/Team: Same as above, but replace the wall with a partner. 

  1. Shooting Form

At this age it is far more important to have proper mechanics than it is to be able to shoot from far distances. You don’t earn scholarships in middle school, you earn them in high school. So prepare for high school, by making your muscle memory as sharp as possible and DO NOT SACRIFICE if you are not quite strong enough to shoot 3’s.

Form shooting should take place from either 3 or 5 different locations around the hoop, and 3 different distances ranging from 3-10 feet away (up to the free throw line) from the hoop. Lock down your mechanics.

  1. Dribble Moves and Finishes

This is one where your level could vary depending on skill and age. The new, young middle schooler and the advanced 8th grader probably won’t be doing the same thing once they get to this point in the workout. So we will have two different options here and if you find yourself in the middle keep pushing until you are towards the more advanced options. 

  1. By Yourself (basic): You want to start behind the 3pt line and attack at it a good speed (around 60% full speed), when you get to the line we want you use a change of direction move and get to the hoop in 1 dribble (2 dribbles max). Do this going both directions at the wings and the top of the key. 
  2. Friend/Team: Do the same thing as above, but use the second player as a defensive player and the ball in the offensive player’s hands. Now, when the offensive player attacks the line and does a change of direction move, they should be trying to explode through the defenders hips. This will teach them to attack at the best angle. Use the same areas of the floor as above. 
  3. By Yourself(advanced): Once you get here, we would like you to be doing the same thing as the basic version. However, now you are going to be doing double moves. This is where you can get creative and test out your handle. You can also work on different finishes around the hoop that will test your ability to score. 
  4. Friend/Team: We want you to play this game that will work on your reaction time. The defensive player will start at the 3pt line, and as the offensive player is approaching and they take their first change of direction move, the defensive player will move laterally one way or the other. The offensive player needs to make sure that they keep theirs heads up (to see), and to react based on the defender. 


  1. Spot of Shooting

One of the most important skills you can have at any level of basketball is to make an open spot of jump shot. So what you should be doing is practicing shooting drills OFTEN!

We suggest this for all players this age no matter the skill range. We worked on your dribbling drills, your passing drills. base shooting drills, drills that incorporate dribble moves, now you need to practice that jump shot.

We suggest that you make 10 from different locations on the floor. Anywhere from 5-9 spots. And from two different ranges.

Pick a range that is super comfortable to shoot from, and after you’ve made all your shots from that range try and move back to a point that is comfortable, but is farther from the hoop. For some of you that could only be 15-18 feet. For others it could be 20-22.

But test yourselves. And if at any point you feel your form starting to break down, STOP! 

Move back in, and keep with the drill. 

When doing these drills it would be fun to do with a partner and keep track of who wins each spot. Winning would entail whoever could get to 10 makes the fastest.



Make sure you’re not worried about the results. Worry about the progress that you’re making. Try to keep everything fun. Make things a competition, whether against a friend or against yourself. 

As always, Bring Your A Game!!