I'm a 5'5 guard and I'm usually one of if not the best defender when I am on the court. After figuring out the ball handlers dribble I usually go in for the steal when its safe to do so. Sometimes I'll be racking up steals and other times I'm racking up fouls? So I wanted to know when is it ok to reach?
As we always teach our players "Play D with the Feet". Stay in front of the offensive player with good footwork and then wait for them to put the ball out in front (with a crossover etc.) then attempt a steal. It is much easier to be called for a reach when the ball is to the side or shided from you. Does that make sense? Also it helps to steal the ball with the hand that is on the same side as the ball. For example if a player is coming towards you with the ball in thier right hand, if you steal with your left hand the odd of a reach are slim. Hope you can rack up those steals and keep the fouls down! Check out our website/free YouTube videos if you are looking for some new moves and drills.
Best of Luck!