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Becoming a better basketball player is a life-long task because you can always improve your game–even if you’re a professional! However, some of the greatest players in basketball, like Kobe Bryant, have mastered one key skill: being able to shoot out of the triple threat position. This skill doesn’t come overnight and you certainly aren’t born with it. Players who have mastered this have spent a lot of time practising it. Being able to score out of the triple threat position is a lethal skill and will certainly make you a valuable player.

What is the triple threat position?

Before we get into why the triple threat is important and how you can improve on this skill, let’s first discuss exactly what it is. The triple threat position is a position in basketball that has you ready to shoot, dribble or pass the ball.

How do you get into the triple threat position?

In order to get into the triple threat position, you must do the following.

  • Get the ball between your shoulder and your knee, ensuring that your elbow is behind the ball.
  • Your off-hand should be on the ball, securing and protecting it from the defender in front of you. This will also enable you to alternate between your hands with the ball.
  • Bend your knees, keep your back straight and your sight forward.
  • Shift some of your weight onto the balls of your feet and not on your heels–this will enable you to move with better speed and react more quickly.

Bear in mind that while you should be prepared to shoot at any given time from the triple threat position, it is also likely that you may need your team mate’s help or that it may be more beneficial for you to pass instead of shoot.

Why is the triple threat important for a basketball player?

It’s not hard to see why a position that enables you to shoot, dribble and score is important for a basketball player. However, more specifically, this position can help you:

  • Prevent your defender from getting up and pressuring you.
  • Overcome a player who is significantly larger than you, avoid a turnover and continue running your offence.

How do you improve your triple threat position?

There are specific drills that you can practise to improve your position. You can perform as many drills as you’d like however, your triple threat position will only be improved by one thing: consistent practice. With that in mind, here are our tips for improving your shooting ability in the triple threat position.

Practice getting into the position

Like most positions and techniques in basketball, the best way to improve is to practise getting into the position. A great drill for perfecting getting into your triple threat position is to do the following:

  • Spin the ball in front of you.
  • Catch the ball as if you would during a bounce pass.
  • Immediately get into the triple threat position.
  • Spin the ball 2 to 3 spots around the perimeter.
  • On the last spot, shoot.

Repeat this drill until you perfect your shot.

Create space

If while in your triple threat position you rip the ball through, drive past your defender and make an excellent play for yourself or a teammate, the defender will give you space for the rest of the game, mostly because he or she does not want to be defeated again. Exploit this with rip throughs and shot fakes–using his own fear against him.

Sell your moves

Part of succeeding in the triple threat position is knowing how to sell your moves. You sell your moves by reading the defender, responding appropriately and within a small window of time. Here are a few tips for selling your moves:

  • Sell and counter your defence’s move – respond according to what your defender does.
  • Counter extremely quickly – don’t wait.
  • Never hesitate – this will allow the defender to read you.
  • Dribble efficiently – move quickly away from your defender.

Learn to read the defender

Knowing how to read the defender allows you to exploit him or her in multiple different ways. This is done by creating space between you and the defender, putting him/her at a disadvantage for their initial purpose. However, to follow through with exploiting the defender, you must be able to score in multiple ways. If you can do just one, the defender will be able to pinpoint your weakness and defeat you.

N1DP’s basketball training for kids and youths can help them master their skills–including the triple threat position. We have brought together some of the most innovative and skilled basketball minds in Australia to train Sydney’s basketball-loving youth.

Do you want to join the N1DP family? Enquire today on 1300 33 N1DP.