TIP! Crossovers are very important if you’re a ball handler. A crossover is when you move the ball from one hand to the other.

Basketball is an extremely popular sport in many countries. Regardless of if you are a spectator, a coach or a player, you know how exciting basketball can be. If you enjoy playing, imagine how much more fun it would be if you were a better player. Check out the advice below to discover ways to help shift your game to that next gear.

TIP! Shooting has much to do with proper balance. Of course, pros may make baskets from a great distance while falling off the court, but this isn’t standard.

Always keep your head up when dribbling instead of focusing on the ball. If you must look at the ball while dribbling, you haven’t practiced enough. Bring your ball along when you go out. Dribble the ball as you go about your day doing errands like walking the dog. If you are staring at the ball, there is no way you can know what else is happening on the court.

TIP! Perfect your layup technique. Since layups account for the majority of scoring in a game.

Crossovers are very important if you’re a ball handler. Crossover dribble is switching hands while you’re dribbling. Crossovers must be done quickly to keep defenders at bay. A good crossover dribble can give you the opportunity to switch directions and progress on the court much faster.

TIP! Successful free throwing requires as much mental skill as it does physical skill. You can teach your body to make a free throw properly, but unless you are properly prepared mentally, you may not succeed.

Free throws require both mental and physical abilities. Without a strong mindset, your body simply goes through the motions to take the shot. Relax yourself and concentrate on your shot.

Practice Catching

TIP! If your shooting is in a slump, take a look at your shoulders. If they’re in a poor position, no matter your skill level, you will be unable to make the shot.

Practice your pass catching often. You should practice catching errant passes, along with perfectly executed ones. During a hectic game, every throw is not going to be perfect. Therefore, it pays to practice catching passes that are a bit off-target.

TIP! Stay conscious of your foot motion and placement. When you are in possession of the ball, touching the baseline will get you out of bounds.

Don’t spend all your time practicing how to confront 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. Practice with each type of defense so you will know what to expect.

TIP! Practice passing while looking another way. Doing this is a great way to confuse your opponents.

You may have better luck honing your passing skills if you forgo dribbling during practice. It’s hard to play without dribbling, however, it can help you and your team create more accurate passes. Don’t get too frustrated if you’re having a hard time when you start because after a while passes are going to be more accurate.

TIP! To maximize your layups, take off with the foot that opposes your shooting hand. Thus, if you use your right hand for shooting, you need to push off using your left foot.

Would you like to learn how to fool your opponent? Consider the back pass. Hold the basketball with your writing hand. Pull it behind you. Then, quickly snap your wrist toward the location where you want the ball to end up. This will confuse the opposition.

TIP! To be a good dribbler, and a more versatile player, you have to develop not only your dominant hand but your weaker side as well. Using both hands to dribble makes you a more effective player, especially when you’re trying to get past your opponent.

When you’re working out, concentrate on core strength building and your footwork. This allows your body to be in balance and be more explosive on the court. Exercise your abdominal muscles as well as those of the hips, buttocks and back. Just like boxers, you can improve your footwork and speed by jumping rope.

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

If you slump when you shoot, look at what your shoulders are doing. You won’t be able to make a shot if your shoulders aren’t in the right position. Keep your shoulders square to the hoop. The dominant shoulder must be perfectly aligned with the rim.

TIP! A good way to stay defensive is to have a defensive stance. To do this, avoid lurching or stepping across the floor; instead use smaller, shuffling steps to move with your opponent.

To get a rebound of a free throw that one of your teammates is taking, you need to be sly with your feet. Be aware that the defender who is below you will start moving in your direction. Slip past him, and you can get the ball. In this way you can get the rebound without a foul.

TIP! Practice your dribbling skills while shifting your momentum to alternate sides. When you’re playing a game, you have to dribble when you’re in a lot of different situations.

To trap someone in a 2-3 zone, get your guards to wait for the point guard to get about 10 feet past midcourt. Once he passes mid court the guards should rush up on him. While they are doing that, the forwards should move out to the wings. The point guard should throw up a pass that your forwards can easily steal.

TIP! A great way to improve your game involves communicating with teammates so that you can anticipate their moves. Basketball involves playing on a team.

Clearly, there are quite a few ways to help yourself play a better game. A lot of them are easy as learning the techniques and practicing them. Anytime you practice it makes you a better player, and whenever you have the opportunity to do so, do it. Practice alone, with friends or with your team, just so you can better your game.