Post-Play Basics

1. Court Position

  • Post players are usually the biggest players on the team and tend to spend most of their time close to the basket. Most post-ups occur when a guard throws the ball to a player near the basket (usually somewhere close to the block). The classic post up position is when a player catches the ball close to the key (usually on either block) with their back to the basket.

2. Sealing your Defender

  • The offensive player should always seal their defender to prevent them from intercepting a post entry pass. As the offensive player you want to give your teammates the confidence that they can throw the ball into the post without committing a turnover. Sealing your defender means maintaining a wide base using your feet to prevent the defender from reaching around and stealing the ball.

3. Feel your Defender

  • The best post players seek out contact with their defender instead of avoiding it. Feeling your defender allows you to keep them from jumping in front of you to intercept the ball, and helps you execute your moves depending on your defenders positioning.


The 3 Keys to a Good Post Up

1. Give a Target

  • Even the greatest post players of all time (Kareem, Shaq, Olajuwon, Duncan) needed someone to pass the ball to them. The post pass is the first element to starting your post move. The easiest way to get the ball in the post is to call for the ball and use your hand to direct your teammate where to throw the ball.

2. Find Your Spot

  • As you become more experienced in the post, you will figure out what area of the court you feel most comfortable in. Part of becoming a great offensive post player is catching the ball exactly where you want the ball. Don’t allow your defender to dictate where you catch the ball, instead work to establish position before you receive the ball so you catch the ball where you want.

3. Play to Your Strengths

  • If you are blessed with great size and are bigger than your defender you should use basic power moves to score the ball. However if your defender has an athletic advantage, you may want to employ a series of fakes and mis-direction in order to score the ball.



4 Basic Post Moves

1. Drop Step

  • The drop step takes advantage of a defenders poor positioning. When a defender over-plays you to a particular side you can take your foot and drop-step towards the basket. This creates space for you to shoot and shields your defender from blocking your shot.

2. Jump Hook

  • Players use a jump hook by turning their shoulder into their defender and using their opposite arm to shoot a mini hook shot over the defender. To shoot a jump hook you should start your shooting motion with two hands on the ball and then release your off hand at the last minute to shoot a one-handed shot.IMG_9065

3. Power Spin

  • The power spin is a great move if you weigh more than your defender and/or want to draw a foul. Take a dribble or two opposite of the direction you want to shoot and quickly spin in the opposite direction. You should seek to make contact and go up through your defender as you spin towards the hoop.

4. The Back-Down

  • This move is a straight power move. If you have a significant physical advantage, you can use your strength to back your defender down towards the basket by using a few power dribbles and going straight through your defender to the rim. Just beware of defenders who might try to take a charge in this situation.


Check out Andrew Bynum put on a post-moves clinic with his array of jump hooks, back downs, and power spins.

  • AH7

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