Are you in Canada? Click here to proceed to the HK Canada website.

For all other locations, click here to continue to the HK US website.

Human Kinetics Logo

Purchase Courses or Access Digital Products

If you are looking to purchase online videos, online courses or to access previously purchased digital products please press continue.

Mare Nostrum Logo

Purchase Print Products or eBooks

Human Kinetics print books and eBooks are now distributed by Mare Nostrum, throughout the UK, Europe, Africa and Middle East, delivered to you from their warehouse. Please visit our new UK website to purchase Human Kinetics printed or eBooks.

Feedback IconFeedback

Learn three types of cuts for getting open

This is an excerpt from Coaching Youth Basketball-5th Edition by American Sport Education Program & Don Showalter.

Coaches will get the information and tools needed for their players to succeed on the court with
Coaching Youth Basketball, Fifth Edition.


Offensive players use cuts to change direction quickly (while staying in balance) and “lose” their opponents in order to get open for passes or shots. Defenders will find it difficult to keep up if they are unable to respond correctly to the cut.

A player executes a cut by planting one foot on the court at the end of a slightly shortened stride, then pushing off that foot to shift his momentum in another direction. For example, if a player wants to cut to the right, he will first plant the left foot (see figure 4.3a) and then push off of it. Then, he will turn the unplanted foot in the direction he wants to go and will lead with that leg as he bursts in the new direction (see figure 4.3b). When cutting, a player should bend the knees to lower his center of gravity and provide explosiveness from the legs. After cutting, he should always strive to get his lead hand up as a target for a pass. If a player is off balance when making a cut, it is usually because of two things: The player is not low enough, and the player’s head is not over his feet.

Three types of cuts that offensive players use to get open are V-cuts, L-cuts, and backdoor cuts.