TIP! It is important to focus on both offense and defense when learning to play basketball. Many times, defense actually wins the game.

Basketball is a generally beloved and fun sport. However, being the top player in the game is not the easiest path. Basketball is fun for anyone who chooses to play it. Read on to learn how you can make the most of your basketball experience.

TIP! Crossovers are key for ball handlers. This is when the ball is moved from hand to hand.

When you dribble, look forward, keeping your head up. If you must look at the ball while dribbling, you haven’t practiced enough. Take your basketball everywhere. Practice in your home and wherever you walk. Paying attention to the ball means you’re not paying attention to the rest of the game.

TIP! There is a lot of pressure when shooting free throws. Training your body is important, but you also have to be mentally ready for the shot.

If you hold the ball a lot, you have to learn crossovers. A crossover happens when you switch hands the ball is in. Speed determines the success of the crossover move. One done the right way, the crossover dribble can help you change directions and get down the court more efficiently.

TIP! Passing the ball is an important part of playing basketball so practice making and receiving passes. During practice you should come up with drills where you perfect catching bad passes along with the good ones.

Having a good foundation is key when shooting the ball. Of course, pros may make baskets from a great distance while falling off the court, but this isn’t standard. Professional basketball players tend to improvise when need be. You need to maintain good balance while shooting, which is sure to produce greater consistency.

Bounce Pass

TIP! Keeping your fingers spread will facilitate better ball handling. This will help prevent the ball from getting away from you while dribbling.

Learn how to throw a proper bounce pass. In order for a bounce pass to be sufficient, the person should receive the ball around their waist. A good estimation is to target the ball to bounce at about 3/4 of the distance that the receiving player is. But, there are some factors that can change this.

TIP! Where are your feet? If you slide onto the baseline, you will lose the ball for being out of bounds. You will get called for walking if you take extra steps and are not dribbling.

Free throws are mental as well as physical. It is possible to practice the physical movements needed to make such a shot, but when your mental focus is lacking, you are likely to miss. Relax, take your time and be focused.

TIP! A good way to see yourself playing is to have someone record your games. You should be able to see what you missed or can do better.

One way to help improve your overall basketball skills is to spend some time watching what the pros do. Whether seeing an all-pro on YouTube, attending a game in person, or sitting on the couch with buddies to watch your local professional team, there are many chances to observe the best. Every player has a skill that allows him to succeed. Practice their moves to become better.

TIP! Making a pass from between your legs is sometimes a good option when the opposing team is right on top of you. Practice this maneuver by bouncing the basketball between your legs while taking steps.

Don’t dribble during your drills. Playing the game without the use of dribbling is a challenge, but it can help you and your team learn to make more precise passes. Don’t get discouraged if it is hard initially’ because the gains you will make are sure to be worthwhile.

TIP! While you’re dribbling the basketball it is wise to bend your knees. If you are standing straight, you will have a harder time controlling the ball and your opponent will be able to steal it more easily.

If you get injured while playing basketball, do not try to play through the pain. Basketball is very physical and there’s always a risk of injury. If you keep playing when you are injured, you could end up with an injury which keeps you from ever playing again. Visit a doctor if you think it’s serious.

TIP! Make sure the ball doesn’t bounce above your knees when you dribble. The other team’s players will have a difficult time stealing the basketball from you.

You need to be quick to play good basketball. Speeding up the temp allows you to out-quick your opponent. Playing fast takes practice, though, and steady drilling. Make sure you never play past the speed you are comfortable. By playing beyond your speed capabilities, you will quickly lose control of the ball, which will lead to bad passes, bad shots, and turnovers.

Free Throw

TIP! Foster a positive relationship with your team members regardless of whether you are playing or practicing. Basketball teams can achieve greatness when the whole team blends cohesively.

In order to become a better free throw shooter you need to have a good practice routine. Inconsistent shooting will lead to inconsistent results. The most effective method to achieve a great free throw is by practicing it repeatedly until you get it right. You will probably miss your shot if the routine you use is not perfect.

TIP! If you’re guarding a taller person, try to keep your body between that opponent and the person with the ball. Keeping your body in position will prevent them from getting a pass or being in position to shoot.

Being a successful defensive player means upsetting and disrupting your opponent’s play. Force them away from their comfort zone. Be aggressive in the moves you execute. Do not allow them to choose the plays that they make. If you do, your opponent will run all over you. You need to adopt an aggressive style and react quickly so you can interrupt the patterns set by your opponents.

TIP! If you want to be a great player, you need to pivot. You need to practice your footwork able be able to pivot without having to think about it or getting disoriented or tangled in your own feet.

Do you want to show off your skills? You might want to spend some time practicing first! Get energized, motivated, and excited and then get out on the court! Soon, you are going to notice the improvement in your skills thanks to utilizing the advice that has been told to you.