TIP! Dribble the ball the right way. Use the fingertips, not the palm, for the best dribbling.

Basketball is a beloved sport worldwide. You can play a quick pickup game at the park any time. Also, you can have a career in basketball if you get an early start. The following information will help you learn more about basketball.

TIP! Try learning how to hit free throw shots. The free throw shot might seem simple, but it can actually be pretty difficult.

Make sure that you’re dribbling the ball correctly. You want to dribble with the tips of your fingers, not your whole hand. Dribbling this way improves your ball control dramatically. Keeping the ball to your side will help it from getting in the way. Instead of focusing on the ground, gaze upward.

TIP! Teach yourself how a bounce pass can be properly thrown. It is best when the ball hits the receiving player near the waist.

You must become knowledgeable about hitting a free-throw shot. As easy as these shots may seem, they are rather hard. Practice frequently using these techniques. Hold the ball level to your face. Focus on the ball and visualize it going toward the goal. Bend your knees to control the arc of the ball.

TIP! Practice playing a man-to-man defense and zone defense. Learn how to play a man-to-man defense and a zone defense to get the best understanding of how the game works.

Learn what a crossover is and how to do it. Crossovers involve moving the ball from hand to hand. It has to be done fast to be effective. Once you have learned how to do a crossover, you can travel down the court quickly.

Bounce Passes

TIP! In order to get a good shot, you must use good footwork. Getting a great position under the goal is the most important.

Teach yourself to throw bounce passes correctly. Bounce passes should not go above or below the receiving players waist. The ideal bounce pass should land about 3/4 of the way between you and the receiver. There are many factors which come into play, though.

TIP! A good basketball player is really quick on his feet. You will have the advantage over your opponents if you can really play fast.

If you have a child who has expressed interest in becoming a basketball player in high school, make sure he trains his core muscles. Core muscles are comprised of the hips, lower back, and abdominal muscles. These muscles form a bridge across the lower and upper parts of your body. When the core is weak, it is difficult to coordinate the movements of both halves. A strong core helps you jump higher and run faster.

TIP! You need to mess with your opponent’s head. Focus on getting them out of the comfort zone.

Never turn away from the ball so that you can always be prepared for what’s coming. This can help you to avoid surprises by fast passes, help you keep an eye on the rest of the court, and allow you to spot potential turnovers. Keep an eye open for easy shots.

TIP! Try to keep the ball in your line of sight at all times. This is not just to make reading the scoreboard easier, but also to facilitate the making of shots and catching of passes.

Remember to spread your fingers when handling the ball. This will help you keep a better grip on the ball. Keep your palm off the ball, too. You should try your best to only hold onto the ball with your fingertips when passing and shooting.

TIP! A powerful play called the trapping machine, is to have your guards wait for the point guard to come just past midcourt. After he crosses the midcourt line, they should run and trap him.

Watch your shoulders and their position if you notice yourself developing a slump in your shooting. If your shoulders aren’t properly positioned, your shot is not going to go in. Your shoulders need to be squared up towards where you’re shooting. The shoulder that’s dominant should be in line with the rim.

TIP! You can strengthen you weaker hand by using it as much as possible, for instance open jars or even brush your teeth. Using both hands when playing is an important skill if you can develop it when you’re not playing.

Always be aware of your feet. When you are in possession of the ball, touching the baseline will get you out of bounds. If you take too many steps and don’t dribble, then you are walking. Being aware of your body movements can give you an advantage on the court.

TIP! One way to increase your three-point skill is to practice at the NBA range. Remember that high school, college and international standard lines are all shorter than the NBA distance.

The key to great defense is being a nuisance to the player you are guarding. Force opposing players into an unfamiliar or unexpected position. Make aggressive plays. Other players should not influence the plays you make. Your opponent will take any opportunity to give you the run around. Force them to act and their rhythm will get disrupted.

TIP! The easiest way to do well at basketball is to speak with the team to see what everyone is up to. It takes the efforts of an entire team to succeed.

Remain low when playing defense. This allows you to jump or react quicker. Make sure you always maintain your defensive stance. When you block a shot, go back to a defensive form quickly.

TIP! Keep a rhythm while dribbling to throw your opponents off. A consistent pace for your dribble will lull your opponent, and help you move more quickly than they do when the time comes.

In order to improve your weaker hand, make use of it for everyday things, such as brushing your teeth, eating out of a spoon, etc. If you gain more mastery of it in all walks of life, you improve overall control. This will start to appear in the game of basketball, too.

TIP! You should spend some time shooting from various places on the court. Begin with practicing your grip and balance.

To help practice three-point shooting you should practice shooting at the NBA distance. School and the international standard lines are nearer than that. By learning to shoot from NBA distances, you improve your range tremendously.

TIP! Maintain strong team camaraderie both on and away from the court. A good basketball team usually comes from having a team that is gelling and in sync with one another.

Use the hand that doesn’t have the ball as a block. However, you’re not actually going to push with this hand; instead, you’re going to separate yourself using this hand. When dribbling, use it as a shield.

Always anticipate where a missed basket might go so you can grab the resulting rebound. Figure out where it will land to grab the rebound.

If you’re guarding a taller person, try to keep your body between that opponent and the person with the ball. This will limit their ability to pass the ball.

TIP! Always keep an eye on the basketball, whether it’s under control of your teammate or your opponent. You cannot win a basketball game without rebounds.

Focus on the ball and where it is going. Rebounds are an essential component of basketball. You defending the opponent will be pointless if you’re not able to get the ball once he’s missed a shot.

TIP! A great way to beat teams in zone defense is a penetrating dribble. Passing a defensive player and moving into the lane is sure to prompt a defensive shift or even a collapse.

Passing is an important part of basketball. Good passing helps beat your opponent. It also builds your team’s camaraderie. The time will come for you to share your individual abilities. You’ll have this time appear, so take your time and allow other to shine as well.

TIP! Practice dribbling the ball hard while still keeping it under control. A ball bounced harder travels more quickly, thereby giving your opponent less opportunity to try to steal it from you.

Hopefully you have a better understanding of what it takes to play basketball. Practice often to perfect your skills and fine tune your natural talents. Once you start playing you probably will start to do so regularly. Whatever you do, remember to have fun!