What’s a Double Dribble in Basketball? (Full Clarification)



Not like touring violations which may typically be tough to detect, the double dribble is (normally) one of many simpler basketball rules for referees to get proper.

However what precisely is a double dribble violation in basketball?

And whats the penalty given to a participant who commits one?

Let’s take a more in-depth look…

What’s a Double Dribble in Basketball?

The double dribble is strictly what the title suggests…

It is a violation that is whistled when a participant makes a managed dribble, pauses, after which dribbles the basketball once more.


As soon as a dribble has been “picked up” by a participant, it’s unlawful for them to dribble once more.

It is a name you will rarely see exterior of youth basketball.

For gamers past the introductory stage, everybody is aware of that it is unlawful to dribble, cease, after which resume their dribble.

However it does occur often…

Why Is the Double Dribble Unlawful?

So, why is the double dribble in basketball unlawful?

In easy phrases, it’s unfair to the protection.

A participant who has possession of the ball however has but to make use of their dribble is harmful as a result of they’ve choices. They will nonetheless shoot, dribble, or move.

However as soon as the offensive participant has “used” their dribble, they’re now not a risk to drive so the protection can apply extra strain.

Permitting a participant to dribble and cease a number of instances with out passing would make life additional tough for the protection, and would end in many *star gamers* hogging the ball for whole possessions.

What is the Penalty for a Double Dribble?

Like different dribbling violations, committing a double dribble violation ends in a turnover. 

In decrease ranges like highschool and school, the ball is thrown in on the sideline or baseline, near the place the violation occurred.

The NBA requires the ball to be inbounded between the free throw line and the baseline to present the protection extra of a bonus.

Wait… Are Dribbling Guidelines Really Enforced?

“They don’t implement the dribbling guidelines,” is a typical cry from informal basketball followers seeking to criticize the NBA.

Whereas it’s true that referees occassionally miss double dribbles, enforcement is far simpler than different violations like touring.

On uncommon occurrences the place a violation is missed, it’s usually as a result of a referee has forgotten the participant has dribbled already.

Within the quick paced move of an expert recreation, it is solely pure to anticipate this to occur at the least a few times a season.

Educating Gamers to Keep away from Double Dribbling

For these teaching on the lowest ranges, educating gamers to keep away from double dribbling could be a lengthy + irritating course of.

Younger gamers are particularly susceptible to dribbling to nowhere and selecting up the ball with no concept what they plan on doing subsequent. 

So if a lane then opens up, who can blame a 6-year-old for getting wide-eyed and beginning their dribble once more?

In practices and scrimmages, implement the rule continually.

The frequent stoppages could also be irritating, however studying to keep away from double dribbles is one thing we ought to be engaged on from day #1.

It’s a foundational device to profitable basketball.


With just a little observe and recommendation from the coach, the double dribble is fairly straightforward for gamers to learn to keep away from.

As a foundational rule that encourages ball motion and tempo, it’s an crucial rule for gamers to grasp at a younger age. 

With some light reminders, avoiding the double dribble is easy and most younger gamers ought to grasp the idea very quickly. 

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