TIP! Learn the mechanics of a free throw. This seems like an easy shot, but it is quite hard.

Do you enjoy basketball but feel like you’re behind on knowing all about it? Don’t worry, you are not alone! Many people like watching basketball and wondering how the pros play like they do. The article that follows will give you some expert tips.

TIP! Dribble while keeping your head upward and looking ahead. If you must look at the ball while dribbling, you haven’t practiced enough.

Crossovers are very important if you’re a ball handler. A crossover happens when you switch hands the ball is in. The action must be very swift if it is to be successful. One done the right way, the crossover dribble can help you change directions and get down the court more efficiently.

Proper Balance

TIP! To be a great basketball player you need to work on your 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.

Proper balance is essential when shooting. Many the professional player can be seen slipping out of bounds or making baskets from far away, but these are not proper techniques. Those who do this are improvising. You should have proper balance when making your shots, and over time this will lead to consistently making baskets.

TIP! Be sure to get lots of practice on layups. Four out of every five shots taken in a given game will be layups.

Make sure you spend your time focusing on your strengths. Your best skills may not be center-stage every game, but knowing how to play the best angles can help you give more to your team. Know the things you’re great at and keep practicing until there is no one better than you.

TIP! Try playing basketball games alone before and during the season. Many times you are unable to find people to play with.

Free throws have a huge mental element to them. You’re able to train your whole body to do full free throw motions, but if you’re not mentally prepared, you will fail. Take a deep breath, relax and imagine you are at practice to help yourself make the shot.

TIP! See if your teammates admire something in particular about your game play. Do you do something particularly well? You might be quick, or you might always be around to support them.

Do not practice solely against zone defense. While much of the game is played in zone, the opponent can flip to man-to-man coverage, changing everything and surprising you. This can cause your team to lose momentum to the other side if this isn’t something you’ve practiced.

TIP! The key to ball control is to spread your fingers out. This way, you won’t lose the ball when holding it.

When developing your jumping skills, limit your use of weight-training. Being weighed down by too much bulky muscle can have a negative impact on your jump shot. Some pro shooting guards make their arms large enough to decrease their own field goal percentage.

TIP! Figuring out the opponent is a great way to do well against a tight defense. Watch tapes and be sure you’re paying attention to scouting reports.

Would you like to completely fool the opposing team, making them look silly? Try the back pass. You want to grip the basketball with your strongest hand. The next step is to draw the ball behind you. Next, snap your wrist in the direction you want the ball to be moved to. It is an effective means of confusing your opponents.

Free Throws

TIP! 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.

Perform skills, practice your ball handling and shoot free throws when you are practicing alone. Basketball is a multiple player sport, but other people won’t always be around. Don’t worry! You can still practice when playing alone. Work on your free throws or your pivot moves. You can always do something.

TIP! Make your forearms and hands stronger so you can handle the ball better. Do some wrist curls as much as possible and your dribbling should get better.

If you experience a basketball injury, don’t keep playing. Basketball is physically challenging, and injuries are not uncommon. Being tough is one thing, but playing through injury can only harm you even further and make the problem much worse. Seek medical advice immediately if you have more than a minor muscle strain.

TIP! Practice drills that force you to get the basketball to the other end of the court in less than 5 dribbles. This might seem impossible at first, but if you achieve it, you will have remarkable stride length and speed.

You need to be quick to play good basketball. Speed always gives you an edge over your opponent. In order to be fast, you must constantly do drills. But do not try to play faster than you are able. Playing beyond your own capabilities sends the game spinning past your ability to control it, and turnovers are bound to occur.

TIP! Mix things up offensively to keep the other team’s defense off-balance. While you run at the net, plant the front foot and start straightening your body.

Have you been yearning to learn more about the game of basketball? Now you are ready to stick a foot in and take on a game yourself. Follow this helpful advice to get started playing basketball.