menu close twitter facebook snapchat instagram youtube article basketball gallery graph left-arrow right-arrow search star trophy video net clipboard shield-check shield-star stopwatch filter reset Share

E-Team

Shop

WEAR WHAT THE TEAM WEARS

Shop Now USA Basketball
Kenneth Faried

The Ultimate Guide to Playing Power Forward

  • Date:
    Mar 24, 2015

The power forward plays a crucial role in the smooth operation of a basketball team.

Power forwards must be excellent rebounders--and just as importantly, must be able to take care of the ball after securing it. Power forwards have to be able to hit open shots, since they typically aren't the focal point of a defense. They have to be a spark who's capable of making a big play for the team.

If you fit in well as a power forward, use this guide to take your game to another level. From rebounding to shooting to supporting the center, this is your resource to playing the power forward position to the best of your ability.

Rebounding

Some of the great rebounders of all time -- Charles Barkley, Dennis Rodman -- were power forwards. Securing rebounds and keeping possession with your team is one of the biggest and most important jobs of the position. (View "Tips, Skills, Drills: Rebounding" video below.)

Defense and Shot Blocking

As one of the post players, power forwards are asked to make life tough for opponents close to the basket by denying position, closing up passing lanes and not allowing any easy close-range shots. Here's how to do that.

Front court Defensive Footwork: Good footwork is the only thing between your opponent and two easy points, so make sure it's fundamentally sound by following this advice.

• 8 Drills to Create a Great Shot Blocker

Shooting

Though primary scorers are often centers or shooting guards, a power forward that can make shots is a huge asset to any successful basketball team. Here's how to polish your shooting and give your team another weapon around the basket.

• VIDEO: The Mikan Drill 

Strength and Conditioning

A power forward being asked to rebound, play physical defense and run the floor needs to be in tremendous physical shape. Here are strength and conditioning resources that will get you game-ready.

• 5 Exercises to Improve Power: Build strength needed for banging around inside with these conditioning drills.

Related Videos

Ball handling and dribbling are critical skills for any basketball player, and for point guards in particular. Dribbling with two balls is a great way to develop those skills, so here is a series of two-ball drills.

Good form is the key to good shooting. From Tara VanDerveer, remember the acronym "BEEF" - Balance. Eyes. Elbow. Follow-Through.

Gold-medal winning USA Basketball coach Don Showalter lays out the most important things to remember when speaking to your team before a game.

USA Basketball's Jay Demings (Youth and Sport Development Director) and Don Showalter (10-time gold medal winning junior national team coach) discuss the four stages of progressive player development.

Related Content

Ball handling and dribbling are critical skills for any basketball player, and for point guards in particular. Dribbling with two balls is a great way to develop those skills, so here is a series of two-ball drills.

Good form is the key to good shooting. From Tara VanDerveer, remember the acronym "BEEF" - Balance. Eyes. Elbow. Follow-Through.

Coaches from all levels explain how they change their practice approach late in the season and in regard to playoffs.

USA Basketball spoke with Mike Jones, a 21-time USA Basketball coach and the head boys basketball coach at DeMatha Catholic High School, to get his insight on coaching.

USA Basketball introduces its E-Learning Program presented by AT&T, which will allow organizations to build a customized online education and certification program.

Coach Licensing & Organization Accreditation Login



Forgot Password?