Fundamentals of Passing the Basketball
Coaching Youth Basketball

The skill of PASSING the basketball is important to teach at an early age in building a strong fundamental base. The correct way to hold the ball and deliver the pass is key.

The ball should always be passed with BACKSPIN or PRONATION. This makes the ball soft and tends to make the ball stop and rest easily in the receivers target.

We teach the kids to "GRAB THE BALL BY IT'S EARS" as shown in the picture below.

Passing the Basketball - Grab the Ears Passing the Basketball - Ears

Out of TRIPLE THREAT POSITION, we "GRAB THE BALL BY IT'S EARS", step to the target, extend both arms, and pass with


This creates a natural BACKSPIN on the ball and makes it easier to catch.

You should use both arms equally on the pass. Many kids have difficulty not using their dominate hand more than the other. Grabbing the ball by it's ears helps the player use both arms and hands equally to get a natural backspin on the ball.

Passing the Basketball

The RECEIVER should give the passer a target with a BACKSTOP on the outside ear. The outside ear from the basket is the best place for the receiver's target because the ball is caught in a BODY-BODY-BALL position away from the defense.

Below are two examples of a good target on the outside ear with a backstop.
Passing Target on the Outside Ear

Passing Target

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