Recovery of the ball off the backboard is a mark of finesse.
The rebound has a double value; it is a defensive play as well as an offensive one. The team that can shoot and then follow up to recover the ball is not only doubling its offensive chances, but is keeping the ball out of the opponents' possession.
The team that controls the backboard during a basketball game would most likely win. Why? More basketball rebounds leads to more possessions, and more possessions lead to more scoring opportunities.
Dwight Howard, one of the best basketball rebounders in the NBA, understands this philosophy very well as he explains the fundamentals on how to become a great rebounder in the following video.
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Every player on a team should learn how to rebound effectively, regardless of his position on the team. The reasoning behind this is that, every player should form the habit of attemptig to grab the rebound after either an offensive or defensive shot has been made. Each player should always assume that the shot will be missed. With that being said, a team should have five solid rebounders on the basketball court at all times during a game.
Caution must be observed in the timing of the rebound. If a player runs too far in, he will get the ball out of position to shoot, and in case the ball should rebound over his head, he not only loses the second shot entirely, but is in a very bad position for defensive help to his teammates.
Although size and height does give a player an advantage, they're not the main ingredient to becoming a successful rebounder. The key is positioning.
A great rebounder always establishes an excellent floor position when attempting to grab a rebound. An excellent floor position means that you fight for the inside position by being closer to the basketball hoop than your opponent, regardless of whether you're trying to grab an offensive or defensive rebound.
Grabbing the Rebound
Once you've established an inside position, the most effective way to grab a rebound is by leaping straight up in the air with great explosiveness and power using both feet, keeping your legs spread apart and butt pointing outward, and grabbing the basketball with both hands. Bring the basketball in front of you after you grab it instead of keeping it over your head.
This keeps your opponent away from you, and prevents him from grabbing the basketball or smacking it out of your hands as you're coming back down after you've grabbed the rebound.
Catch all rebounds instead of batting the basketball into the air or out of bounds. This would allow you to maintain possession of the basketball.
Protecting the basketball after a Rebound
All your effort to grab the rebound and regain possession of the basketball would be in vain if you don't protect the basketball on your way down. Remember, after you grab a rebound, you will usually be surrounded by opponents that are standing by ready to steal the basketball from you. Be alert and vigilante!
As you land after grabbing a rebound, bring the basketball in under your chin (Chinning the basketball) with your elbows out and with a hand on each side of the basketball gripping it tightly. Do not swing your elbows wildly in order to keep your opponent(s) away from you, because doing so might lead to a foul violation.
Pivot away from an opponent that might be trying to steal the basketball away from you. Do not put the basketball on the floor immediately after going up for a rebound, especially if you're surrounded by your opponents.
Keep your head up after grabbing the rebound so that you can easily scan the entire basketball court to see if you can find an open teammate who might be positioned to lead a fast break for an easy score.