How to Do a Switch Handed Layup

At his prime, what was Michael Jordan famous for other than his dunks and his last second shot? His switch-handed layup. Ask Magic Johnson if you have doubts. He'd be going on and on about it. This is the ultimate layup weapon, and one of the most beautiful double-clutch shots from him. It will make people that CAN dunk even more unstoppable because you may avoid charging calls (see warning) or getting blocked, and makes people that can't dunk feel better, too.


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    When you watch every time Michael does this move on archives, make sure you check the leg he jumps off with, it tells you which hand he'll finish the move off quite consistently, but it's not 100% accurate due to the defensive pressure.
  2. Image titled Do a Switch Handed Layup Step 2
    So oddly enough, you have to learn the trick backwards, you have to decide which hand you lay the shot up before you do anything. If you want to finish the shot with the right hand, jump off the left leg and vice versa.
  3. Image titled Do a Switch Handed Layup Step 3
    Start from the 3-point line, dribble with your right hand, then when you are in the lane
  4. Image titled Do a Switch Handed Layup Step 4
    Change the ball to the left hand on the step before takeoff
  5. Image titled Do a Switch Handed Layup Step 5
    Jump off with the left leg.
  6. Image titled Do a Switch Handed Layup Step 6
    Palm the ball, then bring the ball down and around to your right hand, then lay it in off your right hand.


  • Watch archives of Jordan doing this move. Or more recently, check out Brandon Roy's impression.
  • Remember, there are many variations.


  • Don't get cocky once you have learned it. Just like abusing your flashy passes, it is very bad if you abuse this move, or do it so many times that people expects you to do it. MJ is expected to shoot the game winning jump shot or the fade away. Even he lost his zest for the game the leading to his first retirement, even when the exact reason he retired was compounded by the loss of his father.
  • Despite the complexity of the co-ordination required, don't over-think and relax. You have to think very quickly and adjust to the situation. You may even have to abort the switch of hands. Which is why there are many variations.
  • Don't stick your tongue out like MJ until you can mix it up. You do not want to give that many clues for the defenders.
  • There is still a risk of getting a charging, but you can even traveling call if you have very little hang-time.

Things You'll Need

  • Be able to do a layup with both hands.
  • Hang time. Being able to jump high is not enough, it's not everything either. Some people can't jump very high, but has amazing hang-time. Though there has been studies refuting the existence of hang time.
  • Commitment
  • Total body co-ordination and awareness.
  • Determination
  • Basketball and hoops
  • Big hands help to dramatize the effect and also make it easier to fake people out, and switching hands will be easier.

Article Info

Categories: Basketball