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If you want to become a lockdown defender, you must first learn how to get into proper defensive stance. This iSport... See More
If you want to become a lockdown defender, you must first learn how to get into proper defensive stance. This iSport lesson will show you what a good defensive stance looks like. Even if you're a great scorer, poor defense from one player can lead into an entire team's collapse. The key to being a solid defender starts with a good stance, one that will make it easy to guard an opposing player. Begin with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart, and bend at the hips. Stand on the balls of your feet to keep them active and ready to move. If you're too upright or back on your heels, it can cut down your reaction time, making it easier for the ball handler to drive right past you. It's a good idea to put one foot forward in order to direct the offensive player to his weak side. For example, if the offensive player struggles dribbling to his right, you can put your right foot forward and open up your body to his weak side. Doing so stops the ball handler from driving to his dominant side. Keep your eyes locked on the offensive player's belly button. He might try to fake you out with his feet, eyes, hands or dribble, but his belly button will never lie. He'll move in whatever direction his belly button moves. Keep your hands out wide to either side of your body to deflect passes and prevent the offensive player from getting past you. When forcing your defender to his right side, you can follow the ball with your right hand, and try to swipe at it with your left. Always swipe up at the ball rather than trying to reach through the ball handler. You'll draw reaching fouls if you try to go through the defender, so make sure your hands comes from underneath the ball. When guarding a player on the perimeter, start about three feet away from that player. You can play closer, but the ball handler might blow right past you if you're not quick enough to keep up with him. Let's go over what this lesson covers. A good defensive stance will make it much easier to stifle an offensive attack. Keep one foot forward to direct the offensive player you're guarding to his weak side. Focusing on the offensive player's midsection will make it easier to track him. Keeping your hands out will force the offensive player to constantly guard the ball. When you're on defense, always slide your feet as you move. Never cross your feet. You can get beat very easily this way. Keep your feet sliding sideways as you follow the offensive player. This will help you maintain your good defensive stance.
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