In the world of youth basketball coaching, few defensive strategies are as exhilarating and effective as the Run-and-Jump Press Defense. This high-octane approach not only ignites excitement on the court but also promises to bolster your team’s defensive prowess.

In this blog post, we’re delving deep into the heart of the Run-and-Jump Press Defense, breaking down the ten key insights every youth basketball coach should know. Whether you’re a seasoned coach eager to fine-tune your strategy or a newcomer looking to introduce your team to this exciting defensive tactic, this guide will equip you with the knowledge and tools needed to excel.

Join us as we unravel the secrets behind this dynamic defense, exploring its principles, execution, and how it can transform your youth basketball team into a relentless and cohesive defensive unit. With these ten essential insights, you’ll be better prepared to harness the full potential of the Run-and-Jump Press Defense and lead your team to defensive excellence.

10 Must-Know Truths About the Run-and-Jump Press Defense

After giving the above questions critical thought, you must now prepare yourself for the 10 truths about the Run-and-Jump press. These next ten statements are 100% cold, hard facts that you must accept if you hope to be successful in running this press. Failure to acknowledge these ten truths will be detrimental to your team’s overall success.

1. This defense was designed to be a high-risk, high-reward press in the backcourt while giving teams the flexibility to play both solid and percentage defense in the half court.

2. When used correctly, this press will dramatically increase the tempo of the game. However, just because it is an up-and-down style of play doesn’t mean you are conceding open shot attempts to your opponents.

3. As with any defense that is trying to create confusion and frantic energy by pressuring the ball, communication is KEY! All players, whether they are on the floor or on the bench, need to be communicating constantly throughout the course of the game.

4. There are so many different strategies concerning “when” a team should press, but perhaps the most common theory is that of only pressing after made baskets. While at first, this strategy might seem like a practical idea, it actually is not. Throughout the course of the season, there are going to be games where your team will struggle with shooting the ball. When that happens, your team is going to need extra possessions! However, if your team only presses after made field goals and free throws, and your players can’t buy a basket to save their lives, your press has already been defeated! YOU MUST PRESS ON BOTH MADE AND MISSED BASKETS!

5. If either you or your athletes are new to this system, you all must be patient!

6. On ANY “up” pass made by the offense, your defense must have a sprint mentality and get back to protect the paint.

7. Coaches and players all must fully believe in this system!

8. This press will, without a doubt, force conditioning to become an important factor in deciding the result of the game. Make sure your athletes get into great game shape!

9. When you are on the practice floor, all coaches and players must be physically and mentally ready to work. This system requires both physical and mental toughness.

10. When starting out, you must begin by building a foundation. Concentrate on only the basic concepts and team drills. Once players have proved to you and your staff that their ability to execute these drills is acceptable, then you can move on to more advanced techniques.

run-and-jump press

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Related: Benefits of the Run-and-Jump Press Defense


Coach Unplugged Podcast:

Ep 1858 Zone and Pressure Defense Discussion

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