What is BEEF in Basketball? A Guide to the Shooting Method

BEEF is an acronym that stands for a structured shooting technique often taught to young basketball players. It provides a simple, easy-to-remember framework for developing proper shooting form. Here is an in-depth look at what BEEF represents along with tips for implementing it effectively.

Breaking Down the BEEF Shooting Method

BEEF is a mnemonic device representing four fundamental shooting principles:

  • Balance
  • Eyes
  • Elbow
  • Follow through

Let’s explore each component:

B – Balance

A balanced base is crucial for generating power and consistency in a player’s shot.

  • Feet should be shoulder-width apart
  • Slight stagger step with lead foot slightly ahead of trailing foot
  • Knees bent for stability

Players should find a balanced stance that feels controlled and athletic. Consistency is key.

E – Eyes

Shooters must train their eyes to focus on the target. While there is some debate around optimal eye focus, options include:

  • Front of the rim
  • Middle of the rim
  • Back of the rim
  • The net or “diamond”
  • No fixed focus point

Again, consistency is vital – choose one focus point and stick with it through practice and games.

E – Elbow

The shooting elbow plays a major role in accuracy. On every shot attempt:

  • The shooting eye, hand, and elbow must align with the rim
  • As the ball comes up, the elbow tucks under and points towards the hoop
  • At the set point, the elbow forms a 90 degree angle with a cocked wrist

This inside elbow positioning is crucial for consistency.

F – Follow Through

A proper follow through involves:

  • Snapping the wrist and extending the elbow fully
  • Letting the ball roll off the index and middle fingers
  • Maintaining wrist flexion and extended elbow after release
  • Avoiding guide hand interference

This follow through promotes ideal backspin and trajectory.

Teaching BEEF Shooting Fundamentals

Here are some tips for teaching BEEF shooting to youth players:

  • Use verbal cues like “Balance”, “Eyes”, “Elbow” and “Follow through” to reinforce technique
  • Demonstrate proper form often – walk through the motions in slow motion
  • Use visual aids like images or video of elite shooters
  • Start close to the basket and focus on form before range
  • Emphasize consistency first, then tweak and fine-tune later
  • Be positive and patient – changing muscle memory takes time

Initially have players say the word for each component out loud as they work through their shot. Once the technique becomes more automatic, the cues can transition to internal self-talk.

Repetition while consciously focusing on each element of BEEF is crucial for developing muscle memory. Thousands of correct repetitions over time will ingrain good mechanics.

Advancing Beyond BEEF

The BEEF system provides an excellent foundation, especially for young players first learning to shoot. However, more advanced shooters generally require more nuanced technique refinement.

Some limitations of BEEF include:

  • Lack of specificity around footwork

  • No emphasis on engaging the legs

  • Minimal reference to sequencing or fluidity

  • No mention of wrist flexion, hand positioning, or ball grip

For players looking to take their shooting to the next level, more comprehensive shooting models are recommended. Resources like Shot Mechanics provide more intricate detail for elite skill development.

However, for youth or beginner players, keeping things simple with the fundamental BEEF approach lays the groundwork for long-term shooting success. The framework gives players an easy-to-grasp method for building proper technique. Integrating BEEF shooting early on establishes a foundation that can be built upon over time.

Skills & Drills B.E.E.F Shooting Technique


What is the meaning of beef in basketball?

Instructions: The important thing to remember when doing this drill is what B.E.E.F actually means. B= balance, E= eyes on your target, E= (shooting) elbow straight, F= follow through. To begin, the shooter should position him/herself about a foot away from the bottom of the rim.

What are the two factors that go along with beef in basketball?

There are two main components of every shot, (1) power and (2) accuracy. Balance generates power and elbow position is responsible for accuracy. The key is the alignment. Players need the shooting eye, the shooting hand + elbow, and the rim all on the same line.

What does beef stand for in PE?

Treat is the BEEF (Balance, eyes, elbow, follow-through) training model and the Drill training model.

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