TIP! It’s easy to focus on offense when learning to play, but your practice time would be better spent on defense. Many times, defense actually wins the game.

Basketball is a great game for men, women and children. People of all races, creeds, colors, genders and ages enjoy basketball the world round. Invite your friends over and dazzle them with your newly learned skills. Wait, what did you learn? Read the tips in this article to find out how to improve your moves on the court.

TIP! Learn how a bounce pass is thrown. It is best when the ball hits the receiving player near the waist.

You need to keep your balance if you’re shooting. We have all seen the professional basketball player falling out of bounds and making a basket from 30 feet away, but this is not proper technique. They’re just improvising at this point. You should have proper balance when making your shots, and over time this will lead to consistently making baskets.

Bounce Pass

TIP! Practice using different types of defenses. While a good chunk of the game will most likely be played in zone, your opponent might flip the switch to man-to-man coverage just to change things up and surprise you.

Teach yourself to throw bounce passes correctly. The bounce pass needs to reach the player at waist level. The ideal bounce pass should land about 3/4 of the way between you and the receiver. But, there are some factors that can change this.

TIP! Play by yourself to practice. It is possible to enjoy this team sport even in the absence of your team.

Practice the skill of pass catching. Try to catch all of the passes that are thrown to you. Some passes may be too high, too low or off target, so you should practice receiving passes often. Therefore, it pays to practice catching passes that are a bit off-target.

TIP! Having a pre-free-throw shot routine will help you become dependable at free throws. This could mean dribbling twice, shaking out your head to loosen your neck or whatever else makes you comfortable.

You can improve your passing skills by practicing a simple drill where dribbling is forbidden. Playing basketball without dribbling is very challenging, but your entire team will quickly improve their passing skills. Don’t get too frustrated if you’re having a hard time when you start because after a while passes are going to be more accurate.

TIP! Learn to pass the ball without looking at your intended target. Doing this is a great way to confuse your opponents.

Hand signals can help you to stay away from making bad passes. You can become easily frustrated when a teammate does a poor job of anticipating your next passing move. Hand signals help ensure that the player is ready to take the ball. If there is no signal, the player should not make the pass to them.

TIP! In order to perfect your layup shooting technique practice, take off with your left foot if you shoot with your right hand and vice versa. This will allow you to shoot with your comfortable hand.

A great way to stay prepared at all times is to always face the ball. This will help you stay on top of quick changes in possession or plays attempted by your opponent. Keep your eyes open for areas that are open.

TIP! Your forearms and hands should be strengthened in order for you to handle the ball better. Wrist curls can work good if you wish to start handling the ball like you’re able to dribble in any situation.

Understand your opponent. Monitor scouting news and watch footage of other teams in action. For example, you might look to see which players favor their left side and which have dominant right hands. Once you have a solid idea of your opponent, you can dial in on the best way to defend. Smart defenders are good defenders.

TIP! In order to be good at rebounding the ball off a missed free throw, you must be quick with your feet. Guards will be attempting to stop you, so get around them.

Have a friend or family member tape your games so you can view how you appear on the court. Do you see how you could’ve handled a situation differently? When looking at the tape, don’t be too critical, but be honest. It can help you to see how you really are instead of what you imagine you are.

Free Throw

TIP! Make sure the ball doesn’t bounce above your knees when you dribble. Doing this makes it more difficult for members of the opposing team to steal the ball from you.

Create a routine to improve your free throw success. Your shot could be off if you are inconsistent. To better perfect free throw techniques, try using repetition via practicing one routine repeatedly. If your routine is off, then you will miss the shot.

TIP! You should always have your free hand between you and your opponent when dribbling the ball. Don’t push your opponent because that is a foul; however, you can use your arm as separator between your opponent and the ball.

Build up your forearms to become a better ball handler. Wrist curls work well at helping you handle the ball. Don’t assume that you are able to just stand anywhere, catch the ball and shoot it. While this does happen on occasion, you should be moving in order to execute the play.

Start Moving

TIP! One way to force turnovers is to make your opponent change course. Whether you are playing offense or defense, it is important to control the moves of your opponent.

As soon as the ball leaves your teammate’s hands after a free throw, start moving into position. Be aware that the defender who is below you will start moving in your direction. Slip past him, and you can get the ball. Doing so will allow you to get the rebound sans a foul.

TIP! To help maintain your balance when catching a rebound, try to land with your feet shoulder width apart. You want to bring the ball tight into your body with both hands.

Now that you know how to play, you can be confident when you play. Now you know some tips even your opponents don’t know. Keep in mind that basketball should be fun at all times. Either way, it’s exciting to win.