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Basketball Shooting - Up and Under

Marbury squeezing through traffic in the air

What is an up and under

Whatever the name by which it is called, the up and under basketball shooting move consists of not two but three phases:  The 'up' phase, the 'hang' phase, and the 'under' phase.  Basically, you leap and fake a lay-up in the air by holding the ball up, get by your defender in the air, and do an actual lay-up in a second timing before you land.

What does it take to do an decent up and under

First, it takes a decent long jump to perform this advanced basketball shooting technique.  If you do not travel far in your jump, you will not be able to get by your defender in the air.  The up&under; basketball shooting move also requires ample amount of hangtime.  After all, you need to do at least three movements while you are in the air.    Further, you will need extra strong arms to twirl the ball back home  in your 'under' phase because most likely, you will be on your way down when doing so.

When do I use an up and under

Note:Doing a split is pure optional in an up and under

In times when your defender is slower but bigger than you, he usually gives you more space in front because he is wary of your drive towards the basketball hoop.  In this case, you can do well with many different basketball shooting skills: a jump shot and a runner will work.  Yet, if it is not your basketball shooting day, elevate in front of him and fake a runner ('up' phase). When he jumps to contest your shot, draw the ball back down ('hang' phase).  While still in the air, bring the basketball under his arm and lay it into the basketball hoop ('under phase.)

Alternately, some defenders with a blocking instinct let you drive by and attempt a block from behind.  This is also a good time to use the up and under because he will definitely jump on you when you are in your 'up' phase.

Pros-n-cons about doing an up and under



  • Get defenders to jump in the air and commit themselves
  • Secures vertical and horizontal space first, then shoot the basketball
  • Great flexibility in the basketball shooting technique
  • Get defenders to change their defense style, giving you more space to do simple lay-ups
  • The difficulty involved is big in that it involves coordinate movement in the air
  • Huge contact is inevitable because he will jump at you in the air
  • High risk of injury

General step-by-step guide to doing an up and under

The up and under basketball shooting move is a tough one to master.  Nevertheless, once you master it, you are almost unstoppable because it is hard to guard someone faking both on the ground and in the air.  you can further improve it by jumping up on one side of the rim, travel in the air behind the backboard, and extend your arm back out on the other side of the rim for a lay-in.  This is the basketball shooting combination move of an up and under and a reverse lay-up.  Adding creativity to your basketball game makes you a better basketball player.


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