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9 Tryout Tips For Basketball

Trying out for a basketball team can be a very nerve-racking and even stressful time for many players.

One way to get over these types of fears is to make sure you do everything in your power and ability to show what you can offer the team as a basketball player and teamate.

In this article, I will be going over some tips and tricks you can use to make sure you perform optimally going into tryouts.

1. Practice

The truth of the matter is this absolutely step one if you want to make your basketball team.

A lot of this comes from your love of the game as well. You're going to be more likely to train more often if you have a love for the game and a drive to get better.

Remember when you join a basketball team you're going to be taking a lot of your time and effort to the success of that team. So if you find yourself never wanting to play or practice then trying out for a team might not go well, and it might not be for you.

2. Be coachable

Being coachable basically means that you are a player who can take information that the coaches said and apply it to your game.

This is a very underrated quality that coaches love to see in players. Coaches want players who want to be helped and they also love players who can listen and apply information quickly and effectively.

-Examples Of Being Coachable

-Understanding how to do drills after they have explained it

- Acknowledging and respecting a coach when he gives you constructive criticism

- Applying the information that they have told you into your game

- Ability to quickly process information and do your role effectively.

- Good eye contact and respect when the coach is talking

3. Knowing Your Game

Knowing your game can be a very hard aspect of a player's mentality because it is subject to many changes throughout the course of your basketball career.

But by knowing and doing the things you feel comfortable with you can give yourself that reassurance going into your big tryout. All you have to do is show the coaches what you got and the rest can fall into place.

So if you're a shooter, then showcase that, if you're a lockdown defender, try and guard and lock up the best offensive player on the court.

Do what you do best and showcase that as much as possible.

4. Hustle

Control what you can control. Remember in the game of basketball we might not always be hitting our shots, or somedays our body is not feeling quite as well.

But the one thing a basketball player can control is how hard he hustles and the effort he puts into a game or tryout.

Coaches want guys who want to be on their team and there is no better way to show that than by giving it your all.

While it might sound cheesy giving it you're all can also put a lot less pressure on you. By doing your best and leaving it all out there are no regrets once that tryout ends whether you make the team or do not make the team.

5. Stand Out

Remember in basketball and even in life in general a lot of the time you need to be different and stand out in order to get attention from the people you are trying to impress.

Examples Of Ways To Stand Out

-Your game

This does not just mean you have to be 6'8 and have a 40 inch vertical. But you can stand out in your game in a lot of different ways.

For example, if you show coaches you are an unselfish teammate and pass the ball well, that is something that can really make you stand out since so many other players will be looking to hog the ball.

-Introduce yourself To The Coaches

In basketball and in life it is never a bad idea to introduce yourself and get on the good side of the people your trying to impress.

A good way to do this is to shake the coaches' hands after the tryout and say thank you and tell them what your name is.

-Wear Something distinct

This does not mean you have to go wear something silly or way over the top. But it won't hurt if wear something unique and a little bit different like Red Shorts or a brightly colored shirt.

The key here is to be slightly different but not something that can be seen as a distraction as that will give you the impression of selfishness and attention-seeking.


Communication is a great way to stand out as this gives you the ability to both shows your leadership qualities, and help coaches better identify you on the court.

And since so many players especially youth players do not communicate on the court this is a great way for you to stand out and really impress the coaches.

A great example of communicating would be calling out screens on the defensive end or letting your teammate know that was a great pass if they give you an assist.

6. Know What Your Team Needs

This is something many players do not realize about the game of basketball.

Not every coach is looking for a guy who can score 20 points a game and take all your shots for the team,

If you are a scorer I am not saying you should not showcase that, but what I am saying is that you should always look to adjust your game for what is needed for the better meant of the team.

You see this all the time in the NBA. A great example of this would be Ray Allen of the Boston Celtics.

In his earlier days, he was a player who was used to having the ball in his hands and taking a majority of the shots. But in Boston, he was asked to be more of a spot-up type of shooter.

By understanding this he was able to extend his career and even win championships because of it.

The same can go for you in a tryout. Sometimes you need to assess what your team needs and how you can do that effectivley.

7. Be A Great Teammate

There is almost no better way to make a coach want you on the team than to be a great teamate.

In fact, even other players will be excited that you are on the team if you do make it.

Things you can do to show you're a great teammate

- Celebrate Their Victories

This can be a simple as saying nice pass, or even hyping them up if they make a great play.

- Being Friendly

At tryouts a lot of the players there are going to be nervous. By being friendly and an overall positive person you cannot only help yourself feel better but also your future teammates as well.

- Picking your teammate up when he is down

This could literally mean helping your teammate up when he is on the ground. And it can also mean helping mentally.

This can be saying positive affirmations like" keep shooting", or "you got this man".

Helping a teammate while there down is a great way to show that you got there back in both the good and bad times. Which is a crucial sign of character and something coaches love to see especially in tryouts.

-Being unselfish

A lot of players have this notion that in order to really be impressive at tryouts you need to score all the time and take every shot.

In fact, this could not be farther from the truth. The truth is coaches want to see you make the right play at the right time.

This not only shows you a good teammate but also shows you're a player who is capable and willing to play winning basketball.

8. Know Your Coaches Schemes And Plays

A great way to get on your coach's good side is by having an understanding of what they like to run and what they like to see from there players.

Even if you do not know this beforehand a lot of times you can get a good idea of this by listening to the coaches and seeing what they keep talking about in their plays and offenses.

For example, if your coach keeps mentioning that he likes players who cut and move with the ball then you should try and do that.

9. Be Prepared and Ready To Go

Examples of Being Prepared

- Getting enough sleep the night before

- Eating The Right Meal Before

- Getting there early to warm-up

Frequently Asked Questions

Question: What do they do in basketball tryouts?

Answer: Most basketball tryouts will start with simple finishing drills like the Mikan Drill, 3 man weave, and layup lines however they like to do it.

After that many coaches will then test your shooting and dribbling ability, with full-court dribbling followed by standard 2 people shooting.

But usually by the end of practice is when coaches will start to make up teams and see players in 5 on 5 or 3 on 3 competitive situations.

Question: Are basketball tryouts hard?

Answer: This all depends on the coach. But what I have noticed is that tryouts can be hard in that most coaches are going to test you in all aspects of your game.

From your shooting, Dribbling, Passing, Defense, and even conditioning and hustle. So just be prepared to show off all the different aspects of your game.


With the off-season slowly coming to a close most basketball tryouts and teams will start up real soon in the upcoming seasons.

I hope this article gave you the necessary tips and tricks in order to make your team and crush it in any upcoming tryouts you might face.

Thank you for reading and as always keep hooping my friends.

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