TIP! When learning the game of basketball, it’s easy to get caught up in offensive play. But you should also give plenty of attention to defense.

It is no wonder why so many people enjoy basketball so much; it’s a fast-paced, exciting sport. However, if you want to thoroughly enjoy the game, you should know all you can. This is an article packed with tips to help make your game better.

TIP! Shooting has much to do with proper balance. Even though a professional can hit all sorts of crazy off-balance shots, it is not the ideal method of shooting that you want to learn.

Learn the best way to make your free throws. This may seem like an easy task, but in reality, things prove otherwise. Use this technique to better your game. Hold the ball level to your face. Have your eyes on your goal and picture your ball going into it. Then shoot the ball with the trajectory that you visualized.

TIP! Practice your layups a lot. Layups account for up to 80 percent of the shots taken during a game.

Learn what a crossover is and how to do it. Crossovers involve moving the ball from hand to hand. You must do it fast for best success. If done correctly, a good crossover helps you get past your opponent and to the rim.

TIP! Free throws require both mental and physical abilities. It’s easy to physically train for a free throw, yet mental preparation is also needed.

A good tip is to practice your layups on a daily basis. Eighty percent of the shots taken in a game are layups. Whenever you practice, approach the goal full speed, jump and take a smooth shot. Running and jumping well in practice means better jump shooting in actual games.

TIP! Jump shooters should not also be iron pumpers. Muscle strength is beneficial for playing any basketball position, but there is such a thing as too much.

If you get injured while playing basketball, do not try to play through the pain. Basketball is challenging physical sport and you can get injured. Playing through an injury can prolong it which is always bad. If the pain is bad, visit a doctor.

TIP! Ask your teammates what they like about the way you play. Find out what they perceive as your best skill.

In order to be your best on defense, take the time to completely understand the player you are guarding. You should be look at scouting reports, practicing techniques and watch tapes. For example, you might look to see which players favor their left side and which have dominant right hands. Studying your opponent is one of the best ways to be able to win the game. Knowledge can make you a strong defender.

TIP! Remember to spread your fingers when handling the ball. This gives you better control of the ball.

When you’re working out, concentrate on core strength building and your footwork. Your balance will improve if you strengthen your core. Focus on the back, buttocks, and hip muscle groups. Much like boxers do, you have the ability to bolster your footwork and agility by using a jump rope.

TIP! Practice your footwork and control the position of your feet at all times. This can help you avoid going out of bounds or making a bad pass.

Quickness is something that’s desired in basketball. Try to outplay your opponents by being fast to win the game. If you want to play the game fast, you need to drill continuously. Do not play beyond you capabilities, however. Playing beyond your speed cause the game to get out of control with various turnovers and errant passes.

TIP! To become a great free thrower, practice and develop a routine you will use during each shot. This might mean that you dribble the ball twice, bend your knees, touch your forehead, or any other movement.

Ask someone to take a video of you playing and watch it. Can you see where you can improve your form? Are there things you might have done differently? Assess yourself honestly, but don’t be a harsh critic. Sometimes you think of yourself as something you are not.

TIP! Try practicing how to pass while looking in another direction. This throws your opponents off.

To gain greater dribbling skill, always practice with the weaker hand as well as the more dominant one. If both hands are useful for dribbling, your opponents will not stand much of a chance. Don’t allow yourself to use your dominant hand when practicing. This will train your weaker hand to dribble and control the ball well.

TIP! You need to work on your forearms and your hands to handle the ball more efficiently. Exercises that involve strengthening the wrist are especially helpful for dribbling.

The key to great defense is being a nuisance to the player you are guarding. Force them away from their comfort zone. The more aggressive you are the better. Do not let them call the shots. By doing so, the opponent will take advantage of you. Make your moves first and end their patterns.

TIP! Perform drills in which you move the ball up the court in just five dribbles. You will need to learn how to push the basketball in front of you while making long strides.

To boost your ability with the weaker hand, try to use it for all daily tasks. The more dextrous you become with it in your daily life, the better able you will be to control it. Your basketball skills will benefit.

TIP! If you play basketball, you should incorporate strength training into your workout routine. Stamina and strength are two things you need to do well in this sport.

Switch the weight of your body while you are dribbling. Real game dribbling has a lot of variety. Perhaps you will have open court; however, you might have bunches of opposing team members all around you. Because of this, you must be able to dribble efficiently regardless of your body’s position. This allows you to extricate yourself from high-pressure situations.

TIP! Using your weak hand to brush your teeth can help you build skills with that hand. The more dextrous you become with it in your daily life, the better able you will be to control it.

As this article has proven to you, basketball is one of the most enjoyable sports in the whole world. To play in the manner of a professional, you need to have a great deal of knowledge. Put these tips to use to become a better basketball player.