TIP! If you get possession of the ball a lot, you must learn the crossover technique. This term refers to switching the hand you use.

Whether you play competitive basketball or pick-up games at the local gym, you can improve your game. If you wish to learn how to play your best basketball, you should practice often. Go over this article to improve your knowledge to help further your understanding of the game.

TIP! Balance is important when shooting. Everyone has watched a pro player drift out of bounds while still making their shot, but this isn’t something to emulate.

It’s easy to focus on offense when learning to play, but your practice time would be better spent on defense. You can win a game, thanks to good defense. Offensive skills are usually the most impressive ones but defense is something every team should work on.

TIP! Make sure that you practice your layups frequently. In a typical game, up to four-fifths of all shots are layups.

Dribble the ball correctly. Don’t use your palm to dribble. Instead, use your fingertips. This provides you with much more ball control. Dribble on the sides of your body instead of directly before you, and bounce it waist level. Keep your head up and do not look at the ground.

TIP! Making free throws are almost as much a mental part of the game as they are a physical part. It’s easy to physically train for a free throw, yet mental preparation is also needed.

Shake things up rather than focusing solely on a zone defense. Most of the basketball game will probably be played in this zone, but the other team might decide to surprise you and do some man-to-man coverage. If you haven’t trained yourself to counter this, you could lose any control you have over the game.

TIP! Avoid errant passes by the use of hand signals. Oftentimes frustration occurs when trying you aren’t on the same page with a teammate who cuts to the basketball when you try to pass him the ball.

Avoid errant passes by using hand signals. One of the most challenging aspects is trying to send the ball to your teammate as they are going for the basket. Players should use hand signals often when available for a pass. Without a signal, there shouldn’t be a pass.

TIP! Have your team mates critique your playing skills. Do they feel you are really good at something? Maybe you are quick like lightening or maybe you are a strong defender.

If you’re injured when playing basketball, don’t push through the pain. This is an aggressive sport, and injuries happen often. Trying to continue playing even if you’ve got discomfort can make the injury worse. If it is a serious injury, see a doctor.

TIP! Spreading out your fingers is key to handling the ball correctly. This will help you keep a better grip on the ball.

Your defensive game will be more successful if you know your opponents. Follow the scouting reports and watch tapes of their games. One simple thing to know before the game is if your opponent shoots with their right or left hand. This knowledge will help you play the best game possible. Knowledge can make you a strong defender.

TIP! When doing a layup, start running using the weaker of your two feet. If you normally shoot using your right hand, jump with your left.

Quickness is a virtue in basketball. You’ll have an advantage if you’re faster than an opponent. Steady drilling is the key to playing fast. Make sure you never play past the speed you are comfortable. It’s easy to lose control when you play fast.

Free Throws

TIP! Be sure that you’re able to see clearly. Vision is an integral part of making shots and catching passes.

Consistency in your approach is vital to becoming solid at free throws. Always dribble the same way, or with the same movements. Just make your routine quick, so that it can be consistent, and your body is going to remember just how to nail free throws following your ritual.

TIP! Take every charge you can. Letting the other guy run into you stops the game without having to use a time out, and adds another four to the opponent’s total.

To generate consistency with layups, leap from the opposite foot from the hand you use to shoot. Use your left foot when shooting with the right hand. Your body will develop good coordination and you keep your defender at a distance.

TIP! If you are in a defensive position, keep yourself low. This will help you be quicker on the jump and react to the man in front of you easier.

Dribble hard to avoid ball stealing. This will make the ball come back to you faster, and the opponent will have a hard time to get it from you. If you are being closely guarded, then halt your dribbling and quickly pass the ball to a teammate who is open.

TIP! When dribbling you want to keep your knees bent. If your knees are not bent, the basketball will be more difficult to control.

Be sure that you’re able to see clearly. This isn’t just for reading the score, but for catching passes and making shots. Your peripheral vision should be up to par. 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 coming down from a rebound catch, try to land and spread your legs wider than your shoulder span to better your balance. Keep your hands along any side and hold it up to your chest tightly.

If you want to make a 2-3 zone into something special, have the guards remain put until the opposing team’s guard makes their way about ten feet in from mid-court. They can then trap the point guard. Your forwards should sprint to cover the other players on the outside. Their point guard will probably hurl a pass that is easy for your own forwards to steal.

TIP! Having good positioning on the court when trying to grab a rebound will help you keep the ball. Use both feet when jumping; this improves both height and control.

Keep dribbling when you’re going to switch the body’s momentum from side to side. During a game, you’ll be dribbling in all kinds of situations. You may have an open court, by you’re just as likely to be swarmed by multiple opponents. This is why it’s important to switch the direction you will be dribbling. This will help get you out of jams quickly.

Stop Dribbling

TIP! Passing should be an essential element in your game. Good passing throws the other team off.

Double dribbling is not a habit you want to get into. A double dribble is when you stop dribbling, then start again. When you stop dribbling, you must shoot or pass the ball. You are not allowed to resume dribbling. Doing so results in a turnover, which means the opposing team will get the ball.

TIP! A penetrating dribble is the key to beating a team that’s playing a zone defense. If you get around a defender and make it to the shooting lane, the defenders will either break their defense or converge on the ball.

Your should have good position both before and after a rebound to assure you keep the ball. Use both feet when jumping; this improves both height and control. After grabbing a rebound, keep your landing wide to improve balance.

TIP! High level basketball players know that dribbling is as much mental as it is physical. You must be in control of the way the basketball spins, the force with which it reaches the ground, and where it lands.

Your enjoyment will increase the more you know about playing basketball. Continue your quest to learn more by reading blogs and articles that will help you further your skills. The more you learn, the better your game will be.