TIP! Practice your layup shot often. A huge percentage of successful shots are layups.

In order to play basketball well, you need to understand how to become a great basketball player. How can you think you’re going to be a wonderful basketball player when you don’t bother to research? Read on to find expert advice on improving your game.

TIP! Make sure that your regular practice includes catching of passes. Make sure you get used to catching less than perfect passes smoothly.

Dribble the ball correctly. Proper dribbling technique involves use of the fingertips, not the palm of the hand. Using your fingertips provides you with more control. Dribble on the sides of your body instead of directly before you, and bounce it waist level. You should always be looking up instead of at the ground.

TIP! You may have better luck honing your passing skills if you forgo dribbling during practice. It is hard to play basketball without dribbling, and demands accurate passing and teamwork, so it will be a challenge.

Practice shooting free throws. This is one of those shots that seem easy but in real life are difficult. Practice frequently using these techniques. Hold the ball level to your face. Look at the basket and imagine the ball going in it. Then, use the trajectory you just visualized and shoot the ball.

TIP! Do you want to fool the other team? How about the behind the back pass? You want to grip the basketball with your strongest hand. Next, place the ball behind you.

Crossovers are key for ball handlers. This term refers to switching the hand you use. It should be done quickly. If you do it right, a crossover dribble will assist you in changing directions and getting down the court in an efficient manner.

TIP! Hand signals can help you to stay away from making bad passes. It can be frustrating passing to a teammate when you’re both heading to the basket.

To be a better basketball player you should concentrate on the things that make you great. Your skills may not turn you into the star player, but knowing how to make the most of your skills will make you a more valuable player. Know the things you’re great at and keep practicing until there is no one better than you.

TIP! A great way you can prepare for what happens on the basketball court is to avoid having your back to the ball. You have to be aware of what is going on with the ball at all times.

Always work on your layups. Layup shots make up nearly 80% of a game’s shots. When you practice, you need to be able to run toward the basket at full speed, then shoot while jumping in the air. This technique helps improve your on-court layup skills.

Strong Core

TIP! Make layups count by taking off with the foot that is opposite to your shooting hand. If you play to use your right hand to shoot, you’ll want to use your left foot to take off.

Basketball players need to build strong core muscles. Hips, abdomen and back must be worked on. The core connects the lower and upper extremities, and if a person has a weak core, they will fail to excel in athletic pursuits. A solid and strong core lets force that comes from the legs get used for beneficial movements when playing, like faster running and higher jumping.

TIP! A good way to stay defensive is to have a defensive stance. Slide your feet from side to side or push off with your opposing foot so that you are always in position.

Understanding the opponent is a good way to win with defense. Watch tapes and be sure you’re paying attention to scouting reports. Pay attention to dominant hands. Once you start to get to know the other team, you can do a lot better when you’re on defense. A person that knows about defending makes a strong defender.

TIP! Alternating your pace is critical to keeping the defense guessing. Sprint towards the hoop then quickly plant your foot, then straighten up.

Have a friend or family member tape your games so you can view how you appear on the court. You can see where you can improve and what plays you missed. Be honest when assessing, but avoid being overly critical. Sometimes it’s beneficial to look at yourself the way you really look and not just like you think you look.

TIP! Always attempt to remain low when you are playing defense. This allows you to jump or react quicker.

When you are passing the ball, get used to looking in the other direction. This throws your opponents off. When done right, the look draws your opponents to the wrong locale so that the person you passed to has a good long look at the basket before shooting. It’s a powerful play when done right.

TIP! If you want to improve your three-point shooting, try and do it from the NBA distance, at a minimum. The standard line , high school and college lines are all going to be closer.

Give your layouts the most by launching from the foot that opposes the hand you are shooting with. Thus, if you tend to shoot with the right hand, make sure to jump off with the left. This helps to maintain balance throughout your body and allows you to use yourself as a barrier between the defender and yourself.

TIP! Try to contain the action to the area below your knees. This makes it difficult for the ball to be stolen.

A consistent routine will help you to achieve great free throws. Inconsistency will ruin your shots. The best way to perfect your free throw shooting technique is through repetition by practicing the same routine over and over again. If your routine is off, then you will miss the shot.

TIP! Use exercises that are adapted to your level and needs. Running for long distances will increase your stamina, while running sprints will help you with fast-paced moves.

To gain greater dribbling skill, always practice with the weaker hand as well as the more dominant one. Being able to effortlessly dribble with both hands gives you the ability to run both sides on an opponent and keep them off guard. Don’t allow yourself to use your dominant hand when practicing. Eventually, your weak hand will be able to dribble well.

TIP! If you’re serious about your game, you should take your diet seriously. Complex carbohydrates and protein will give you energy to ensure that you get through a long, fast-paced basketball game.

Dribble hard to avoid ball stealing. A good hard dribble brings the ball back to you much faster, leaving less time for the opponent to steal it from you. If you have an opponent who is guarding you relentlessly, it is time to pass the ball.

TIP! Manage your nerves whenever you shoot. Focus on the basketball hoop.

Gain pride and confidence by learning how to play the game with skill. Researching ways to bolster your basketball skills can do this as well. Not only will you beginning more, but you’ll show your teammates how good you are.