This entry is the 14th chapter of the blog Ideas on Building a Fast Fast Break Offense. The whole blog is here.
Running the fast fast break effectively is often considered a matter of effort and tactics. And as seen above, up to a certain point it is.
However, it is also a technical matter. Players must be able to execute certain actions while sprinting full speed. While acquiring skills necessary to execute those actions, the players must eventually run full speed at practice, too.
This is sometimes ignored by coaches. Some seemingly assume that technical skills to be used while running full speed may be acquired while always running half speed. Unfortunately, this is flawed thinking. In reality, practice must be game-like.
On the other hand, the players can run full speed for only so long. Practice becomes counter-productive if they get too tired too early. This fact limits the number of repetitions that can be done game speed. A trade-off must be made between the effectiveness of practice and the expenditure of energy.
Relevant technical skills to be practiced in full speed include lay-ups, certain types of passes, and ball handling.