TIP! Do not restrict your practices to zone defenses alone. Zone play will be important, but man-to-man will pop up from time to time, too.

Basketball is fun to play and watch, but to play the game expertly takes practice. However, you can’t practice what you don’t know how to do. This text helps you get the shot in every time.

TIP! When it is not basketball season, keep in practice by shooting baskets and practicing your skills. Many times you are unable to find people to play with.

Free throws are an excellent skill to practice in your spare time. This seemingly simple shot can be difficult to execute under game conditions. Make sure that you’re applying the following technique when practicing. First, hold the ball just above your nose, about 8 inches from your face. Picture yourself going through the shot in your mind, with the ball sinking through the net. Once you’ve visualized this, take your shot as you just saw it in your head.

TIP! Footwork is what gets you ready for a shot. There are two important points you must remember.

Bounce passes are extremely efficient when done properly. If done correctly, a well-executed bounce pass will reach the player in a way that allows them to move immediately with the ball. If it helps to measure it out, consider aiming for a mark on the floor about three-fourths of the way between you and your teammate. There are other factors you have to think about too, however.

Errant Passes

TIP! Make sure your fingers are apart from one another when dribbling. This can help you to remain in control of the ball at all times.

Passing the ball is an important part of playing basketball so practice making and receiving passes. When you’re practicing, you should drill in being able to catch random throws in addition to passes that are perfect. During the course of a game, you can expect there to be many errant passes. Learning how to catch these errant passes will put you at an advantage.

TIP! Understand your opponent. Watch tapes of their games and see how others move on the court.

Lifting weights too much can actually take away from your jump shot. It’s important to be strong, but not too strong. Overdeveloped muscles could actually interfere with your score percentage.

TIP! You need to be quick to play good basketball. You need to be faster than the opposing team if you want the advantage.

Good footwork remains a vital part of basketball. Being physical under the rim is crucial, but having good positioning on the court is even better. Once you’ve reached a good spot, you need to secure it. Strong footwork is key.

TIP! A good way to develop ball handling skills is to make your forearms and hands stronger. Wrist curls are great for bettering your ball handling in basketball to the point where you could practically do it sleepwalking.

If you get hurt during a basketball game, don’t try to play while in pain. The sport of basketball is very physical, which makes one susceptible to injury. If you try to keep playing, you can hurt yourself worse. Seek medical advice immediately if you have more than a minor muscle strain.

TIP! Make sure that you can see clearly. This isn’t just for reading the scoreboard.

Never turn away from the ball, so that you can always stay ready for anything. This provides court awareness and prevents you from unexpected turnovers or quick passes. Keep an eye open for easy shots.

TIP! If you want to put pressure on the offense, you need to change the pace of things. When you running towards the basket, try planting the front foot and start straightening up.

Spread your fingers out to handle the ball properly. The ball will not get away if you always keep your fingers spread when handling the ball. Keep your palm off the ball, too. When you’re shooting or passing, the only place the ball should touch your hand is on your fingers.

TIP! In basketball, strength is important, so do strength training. Stamina and strength are two things you need to do well in this sport.

Understanding the opponent is a good way to win with defense. Review videotapes and monitor scouting reports. Figure out which people are right or left handed. If you know their game, you can defend against it. A defender that is knowledgeable is an effective defender.

TIP! When you are on the defense, the key is to stay as low as you can. Doing so improves your reaction time with regards to your opponents’ actions.

Using a weaker hand helps improve overall dribbling skills. Being ambidextrous on the court makes it more difficult for defenders to figure out what you will do next. Force yourself to not use your stronger hand. You will quickly strengthen your non-dominant hand for dribbling.

TIP! When dibbling the ball, bend your knees. Standing straight makes it hard to control the ball.

Dribble with force to prevent the ball from being stolen. If you dribble hard, the ball will go back to your hand quickly and the offense will not be able to snatch it easily. If your opponent is playing you up close, stop what you’re doing and quickly look to find and open teammate to pass the ball to.

TIP! To see improvement in outside shooting skills, you must practice your shots hundreds of times daily from various points on the court. You should also practice starting with a dribble and then taking a shot.

A good basketball drill to perform is to see if you can get the ball down the entire court in 5 or less dribbles. This can seem impossible, but if you do it, you’ll get incredible speed and length. You will have easy layups on fast breaks and you will be able to advance your team easily.

TIP! Only cease dribbling when you are prepared to shoot or pass. If you stop, you limit your options.

In order to better your shooting skills, you must practice shooting hundreds of times each day from various position on the court. Try to practice a hard dribble followed by a quick shot. Do not focus on the target until you are already in the air. This is a good way to simulate real game-time conditions and increase accuracy.

Avoid dribbling above your knees. The other team’s players will have a difficult time stealing the basketball from you. Practice moving quickly while dribbling below knee level.

TIP! If you guard someone that bigger than you are, try staying between the person with the ball and them. This keeps them from grabbing a pass and shooting over you.

You should always have your free hand between you and your opponent when dribbling the ball. However, you’re not actually going to push with this hand; instead, you’re going to separate yourself using this hand. Keep it slightly up when you dribble with your opposite hand.

TIP! You should never argue with an official. You can disagree with an official’s call and ask questions about it.

Keep your dribbling in a rhythm until you want to throw your opponent off guard. A consistent pace for your dribble will lull your opponent, and help you move more quickly than they do when the time comes. The speed is important, but it works in tandem with the sound to disorient the player who is guarding you.

Always know the angles the ball is likely to take if it misses a goal. Figure out where it will be and rebound the ball.

TIP! When playing basketball it is important that you always remain focused. That includes during practice or drills, when it is tempting to goof off and let your mind wander.

It doesn’t matter how often you play basketball, the tips in this article will better your game every time you play. Focus on one area at a time and enjoy the steady success. You can play much better basketball by using the tips provided.