TIP! Perfect your free throw. This is something that seems simple, but in reality it can be hard.

You probably felt like you entered an alternate universe the first time you played basketball. You learned the basics: dribbling, passing and shooting. Now, you might even feel as though you have mastered the sport. There is still a lot more to learn, and the following tips will show you how.

TIP! Work on being able to receive a pass. Don’t just work on waist-level, perfect passes, though, work on receiving tougher passes as well.

Learn to correctly dribble the ball. Finger tips, not palms, are the key to successful dribbling. Doing so will allow you a greater degree of ball control. Dribble to your body’s side instead of doing it out front, and bounce the ball at your waist’s level. Do not look at the ground; look up at all times.

TIP! You should practice against a variety of defense types, not just zone. Learn how to play a man-to-man defense and a zone defense to get the best understanding of how the game works.

Get good at making free throws. It seems easy to do but surely isn’t. This technique should be practiced often if possible. To start off, hold the ball in front of you. Have your eyes on your goal and picture your ball going into it. Bend your knees to control the arc of the ball.

TIP! You can learn to trick the opposing team. Consider the back pass.

If you hold the ball a lot, you have to learn crossovers. A crossover is when you move the ball from one hand to the other. You must do it fast for best success. If you do it right, a crossover dribble will assist you in changing directions and getting down the court in an efficient manner.

TIP! If you have a kid that wants to play basketball in high school, be sure they’re working on their core muscles. They should train their lower back, hips, and abs.

Free throws are as mental 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 yourself and focus on the hoop.

TIP! Use hand signals to avoid errant passes. Players can get easily frustrated if they make a pass to players that aren’t available to catch the ball.

Try using hand signals to prevent passes in error. It can be frustrating passing to a teammate when you’re both heading to the basket. Players should use hand signals often when available for a pass. If you don’t receive a signal then realize your teammate is not able to get the pass.

TIP! Don’t play while injured or else your injury will worsen. This sport is physically demanding and you can become injured.

It is best to take a break if you sustain an injury while playing. Basketball is physically demanding, and it is easy to get hurt. Pushing through the pain often results in a more serious injury. Seek medical advice immediately if you have more than a minor muscle strain.

TIP! One good way to always be ready for whatever happens on the court is to never turn your back on the ball. This provides court awareness and prevents you from unexpected turnovers or quick passes.

Seek advice from your teammates about how you play the game. Do they feel you are really good at something? Perhaps you are great backup or fast on your feet. Find out what others perceive as your natural gifts and build upon those more completely.

TIP! In order to handle the ball correctly, spread your fingers out. This will help you to be sure that it won’t escape your grasp when trying to hold it.

If your shooting is in a slump, take a look at your shoulders. When your shoulders are not properly positioned, then it is almost impossible to perform at your best. Be sure shoulders always remain squared towards your hoop. Then, make sure that your shooting side is lined up directly to the rim.

TIP! Quickness is a virtue in basketball. Gaining agility and speed will give you the upper hand when playing a game of basketball.

Have a friend or family member tape your games so you can view how you appear on the court. You’ll likely see ways that you can improve. Assess yourself honestly, but don’t be a harsh critic. The reality of your play is often very different from your perception.

TIP! Have someone record the games you play so that you can watch it to check out your form. This way, you have the opportunity to go through your play at a later time and see your mistakes.

Do your free throw shooting the same way every time. This might mean that you dribble the ball twice, bend your knees, touch your forehead, or any other movement. By developing a quick ritual, you can help train your body to make free throws.

TIP! Between the leg passes are usually helpful when another team’s players are riding you hard. Step forward and back while dribbling the ball between your legs hard.

If the opposing team is guarding you to much, you can try a pass between your legs. To practice, simply bounce the basketball between your legs while stepping either forward or backwards. When you’ve mastered this step, you will be at a great advantage.

TIP! Workout to increase flexibility and strength in your hands and forearms. Wrist curls are great for working wrist muscles and improving your dribbling.

A good way to develop ball handling skills is to make your forearms and hands stronger. Try doing some wrist curls as they are particularly effective in honing your dribble skills. Don’t believe you will be able to simply plant yourself someplace, receive the ball and sink a shot. You have to start moving the basketball around to get things to happen.

TIP! Keep changing up your pace to help keep your opponents on their toes. Sprint towards the hoop then quickly plant your foot, then straighten up.

Can you see well? This isn’t just for reading the score, but for catching passes and making shots. You need to have the best peripheral vision possible. By seeing the court well, you can anticipate defensive moves as well as what all your teammates are doing. Good vision is vital to basketball success.

TIP! When you’re working with defense, staying low is a good idea. This allows you to jump faster and increases your reaction time should the person you’re covering do something.

This article has provided you with excellent ideas for improving your game, so the ball is in your court. Set goals for yourself, and be sure you practice, practice, practice! Use the tips here when you are creating your strategy and you will see big improvements in your game.