Circle Movement simply says that when the ball is driven towards the basket all perimeter players must rotate in the same direction that the ball is driven. In other words, if the ball is driven to the right, all perimeter players must rotate one perimeter spot to the right. If the ball is driven to the left, all perimeter players must rotate one perimeter spot to the left.
In the above scenario, 1 is driving to the right. Player 2 is the most immediate player in the direction of the drive. We call that player the Natural Pitch player. Player 3 is the player to the immediate left of player 1. When player 3 rotates to the right, he/she will end up behind player 1. We call this player the Safety Valve player.
Circle Movement at this point is only for perimeter players. Posts can be taught to circle move as well even though this is probably more than most teams want to tackle at this point.
Circle Movement is easy to teach and tough to learn. Players will struggle in making this a habit. They will know what to do, but they won’t do it all the time initially. They may go through a series of steps in learning the action.
First, they may start by not moving or going the wrong way without the realization that they didn’t move correctly. Then they will continue to do the same, but they will start catching themselves. Next they will react but it will likely be slowly. They may even start to react incorrectly, but then catch themselves and rotate correctly. Finally, they will start reacting correctly on a consistent basis. It takes time and practice. Regular and consistent repetition will make it a habit eventually. Even then, it must be repeated to ingrain the habit into instinct.
Circle Movement is the hardest thing that players will have to learn. However, everything else is much easier in comparison. Teach them Circle Movement first so that as time passes by their confidence only grows. The alternative is to teach other things first and have initial confidence turn into frustration. In these situations, it may be difficult to get that confidence back.