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Handling Double Teams: Maintaining Composure and Finding Options

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    Sports Tips

Handling Double Teams: Maintaining Composure and Finding Options

Being double-teamed in the post can throw any player off their game. It's a high-pressure scenario that tests both your composure and decision-making abilities. But fear not! With the right strategies, you can not only handle double teams but also turn them into opportunities for your team. Let's dive in and break it down.

Recognize the Double Team Early

The sooner you spot the double team, the better your response.

Signs of an Impending Double Team:

  1. Defender's Body Language: Watch for the nearest defender who seems to be drifting towards you while their assignment is left open temporarily.
  2. Communication: Pay attention to the opposing team’s communication, especially if you see pointing or hear teammates calling out commands.


Stay calm and focused. Recognizing the double team early gives you precious seconds to make a smart move.

Maintain Composure

Maintaining your cool is half the battle won.

Key Techniques:

  • Breathe: Controlled breathing can help slow down your reactions and keep you grounded.
  • Strong Stance: Use a firm and balanced stance to protect the ball and maintain your position.


Practicing under simulated double-team pressure situations during training can greatly improve your in-game composure.

Make Smart Decisions

Your next move can either break the double team or capitalize on it.

Options to Consider:

Pass to Open TeammateLook for a teammate who is open due to their defender converging on you.
Drive Out of DoubleIf there's a clear path, use a couple of quick dribbles to escape the double team.
Post SpinExecute a spin move if you see an opening, turning the tables on the defenders.
Call TimeoutIf you're trapped and the situation looks dire, calling a timeout can reset the play.


Develop strong peripheral vision and passing skills to easily spot and execute the best option.

Practice Scenarios

Turn theory into practice with these drills.

  1. 2-on-1 Drills: Simulate the double-team scenarios in practice, with two defenders focusing on one offensive player.
  2. Corner Trap Exercise: Design drills where you deliberately get trapped in the corner to learn how to dribble or pass out effectively.


Incorporate these drills into regular practice sessions to build confidence and improve under-game conditions.

Lean on Teamwork

A double team means someone is always open!

Encourage Team Communication:

  • Pre-match Discussions: Talk about potential double-team scenarios and plan responses.
  • Continuous Communication: Keep in-game communication alive and ensure your teammates are alert to the double team.


Developing a strong court sense and chemistry with teammates ensures quicker and more effective responses.


Handling double teams in the post is a skill that intertwines player knowledge with coaching wisdom. Recognizing the signs, maintaining composure, making quick yet smart decisions, and leveraging teamwork can turn the pressure of a double team into a strategic advantage. Embrace these strategies, and the next time you face a double, you'll find yourself not just handling it—but thriving under it!