TIP! If you want to excel, you have to play to your strengths. Your team will benefit more if you stop trying to be the star of the game and work your best.

Basketball isn’t just a sport played in gym or organized leagues. You could have fun playing at a park or in your driveway. If you are an aspiring basketball players, it would be a good idea to read this article to learn some new skills.

TIP! You want to be prepared for any type of defense the other team plays. Learn how to play a man-to-man defense and a zone defense to get the best understanding of how the game works.

Shake things up rather than focusing solely on a zone defense. A lot of the game is sure to be played in the zone, but your opponent could change to man-to-man coverage. If you haven’t practiced against it, you could end up losing your grip on the game quite quickly.

TIP! To make sure there are no errant passes, use hand signals. It can be frustrating passing to a teammate when you’re both heading to the basket.

Don’t bulk up if you want to be good as a jump shooter. While muscle mass is good for any basketball position, perimeter play requires less than other positions. Some overzealous shooting guards buffed up too much, and it had an adverse effect on their overall field goal percentages.

TIP! If you post up, you need to use good footwork to get open and make sure you get a good shot. You need to have physical presence beneath the net, but you also have to choose the right spot to be in.

Keep your skills sharp in the off-season by playing different challenging games. Sometimes you cannot find a team of people to play basketball with. That is okay. You can accomplish a lot by practicing alone. You can practice free throws or pivot moves. There is always something to practice.

TIP! Should you receive an injury during the course of the game, never try to continue playing despite the pain. This sport is physically demanding and you can become injured.

Spreading the fingers is something you have to do to handle the ball right. This keeps it under control. Avoid putting your palm on the ball, too. When shooting or passing the ball, only your fingers should contact the ball.

TIP! Never turn away from the ball, so that you can always stay ready for anything. Passes and turnovers won’t take you by surprise because you will be more aware of what is happening on the court.

Build your core strength and work on your footwork. Your body will retain balance and move quicker when you have strong core muscles. Focus on the back, buttocks, and hip muscle groups. Jump rope can be used to speed up your feet.

TIP! Work on core strength when you work out. If the core muscles are in good shape, you will feel lighter on your feet.

One of the most vital attributes one needs to play basketball is quickness. Gaining agility and speed will give you the upper hand when playing a game of basketball. You have to be steady as you play quickly. Don’t try playing fast until you can. It’s easy to lose control when you play fast.

TIP! You need to be quick to play good basketball. You’ll have an advantage if you’re faster than an opponent.

It’s important to know where you have your feet and also what they’re doing. Stepping ever so slightly out of bounds while you have the ball can cause an overturn. If you take several steps while holding the ball, you could be called for traveling. If you move either foot while trying to pick, take a charge or set a screen, it will result in a called foul.

TIP! You should always be aware of the position of your feet and their actions. Stepping ever so slightly out of bounds while you have the ball can cause an overturn.

Making a pass from between your legs is sometimes a good option when the opposing team is right on top of you. To practice, simply bounce the basketball between your legs while stepping either forward or backwards. Mastering this skill will provide you with a major advantage on the court.

TIP! Have a friend or family member videotape your games, then view the video to see the result. Did you spot something that could be improved? Honestly and openly assess your own performance.

Use deception by looking elsewhere when you make passes. You are able to confuse opponents with this technique. If you can pull it off, it’s effective to draw your opponents away from the shooter. That way the shooter gets a great look before shooting. You must practice this move with your teammates so that everyone on your team understands what is going on.

TIP! Practice passing while looking the opposite direction. This throws your opponents off.

No matter what kind of basketball you play, you will enjoy it more with more skills. Now that you’ve read all the way through this article, put it to good use! Your playing style will improve with the more knowledge that you learn.