TIP! Look forward and hold your head up while you dribble the ball. Anyone who watching the ball while they dribble surely needs to spend more time in the gym practicing.

Basketball is one of the most popular sports around. Regardless of if you are a spectator, a coach or a player, you know how exciting basketball can be. If you would like to play and play well, it pays to practice hard in order to be the best you can be. Below are several useful ideas for bettering your game and scoring some real victories.

TIP! A good tip is to practice your layups on a daily basis. A huge percentage of successful shots are layups.

Learn what a crossover is and how to do it. Switch from one side to the other while dribbling. This must be done quickly to be successful. Once you master the art of the crossover dribble, you will be able to change directions quicker.

TIP! If you’re a jump shooter, don’t lift weights too often. You do need muscle conditioning and strength, but you can have too much when it comes to shooting field goals.

You have to know how to bounce pass properly. Executed properly, a bounce pass will connect with the receiving player at the waist. The ideal bounce pass should land about 3/4 of the way between you and the receiver. There are many factors which come into play, though.

Free Throws

TIP! Keep your eye on the ball. This keeps you aware of what is going on so you aren’t surprised.

There is a lot of pressure when shooting free throws. Of course, you can show your body how to make free throws. However, if you’re not in the right state of mind, you won’t succeed. You are more likely to make more successful free throws if you relax and focus on the basket.

TIP! If you are shooting as well, pay attention to the position of your shoulders. If you have bad shoulder position it doesn’t matter how great you are the shot isn’t going to go in.

You may have better luck honing your passing skills if you forgo dribbling during practice. It is hard to play with no dribbling, but it will help your team make great passes. Don’t get upset if it seems hard, this will improve your team’s passes over time.

TIP! A good player on defense will annoy the heck out of the opponent and cause the other team to get flustered. Force opposing players into an unfamiliar or unexpected position.

There are passes that can confuse the other team momentarily. You should try a back pass. Hold the ball using your dominant hand. Then, bring the ball back behind you. Quickly flick with your wrist in the direction you want to pass the ball. This will confuse the other team into wondering where the ball went.

TIP! Try to keep the ball in your line of sight at all times. This isn’t just for reading the scoreboard.

Use hand signals to avoid errant passes. Passing is tough, especially if you and your teammate are not in sync with one another. Using signals helps communicate passes with your team. If they don’t signal, don’t pass to them.

TIP! Developing your muscle strength and flexibility will make you a better basketball player. In addition, stamina is important to the game, too.

Good footwork is important when you’re posting up in the paint. While physical presence under a basket is important, finding a decent spot before the opponent is even more so. Once you have a location, it is important that your feet are firmly planted there. Each of these skills is reliant on good footwork.

Defensive Game

TIP! Never stop your dribble unless you are going to shoot or pass the ball. After you halt the dribble, your options become quite limited.

One of the best ways to play a strong defensive game is to know your opponent. Make sure that you’ve watched tapes that show the other player. You can also check out scouting reports. Keep track of which players are right hand dominant and which are left hand dominant. When you know your opponent, you will be better able to play an effective defensive game. Strong defenders are knowledgeable defenders.

TIP! Keep the action beneath your knees, if you can. This makes it difficult for the ball to be stolen.

Whenever you work out, practice footwork and work on your core strength. Your body will naturally balance well if you have strong core muscles. Your muscles in your buttocks, hips, abdomen, and back should be worked. Jump rope like a boxer to improve your fancy footwork.

TIP! Practice making shots from a lot of different places on the court. Practice your grip and balance first.

Clearly, there are quite a few ways to help yourself play a better game. Most of them are just basically learning a particular technique, then practicing that technique until you can do it in your sleep. No matter what you are trying to learn, practice makes perfect. You just need a basketball and a hoop. Regardless of whether or not you play on a team or a playground, these tips will make your game better.