TIP! It’s simple to want to work on offense when you’re getting into basketball, but it’s smarter to think about defense practice too. Basketball games are often won by the defense.

Basketball is not a particularly complex game and the rules are simple to understand. The basic strategies of the game can be acquired in a few minutes time. You can always learn more and this article will help you start learning.

TIP! Make sure you spend your time focusing on your strengths. If you can rely on your strengths, you will become a better player.

If you hold the ball a lot, you have to learn crossovers. This move entails transferring the basketball from your left hand to your right hand and back again. The move must be done quickly if it is going to work. When done properly, crossover dribbling is a great way to quickly switch direction or move around the court in an efficient manner.

TIP! Watching the pros can help you pick up on certain skills for improving your game. Go to games, watch them on TV and you can also watch videos.

Make sure to practice your layups whenever possible. Layups comprise approximately 80 percent of all shots. When you practice, run toward the net, and then get a high jump in so you can smoothly shoot. This will assist you in perfecting your ability to jump and then shoot.

Perfect Passes

TIP! Spreading out your fingers is key to handling the ball correctly. This can help you to remain in control of the ball at all times.

Frequent pass catching practice is important. You need to be able to retrieve perfect passes and not so perfect passes. When the pressure is on, not every pass will come straight to you. You can do the rest of your team a favor by practicing how you can best complete imperfect passes.

TIP! Watch your shoulders and their position if you notice yourself developing a slump in your shooting. When they are out of alignment, all shots will fail.

Would you like to learn how to fool your opponent? Give the back pass a try! Use your dominant hand to palm the basketball. Next, pull the ball behind your back. After determining which direction you want the ball to go, use a quick flick of your wrist to send it that way. This is a very useful trick to confuse the opposing team.

TIP! Always be aware of your feet. You want to make sure you don’t step over the bounds by even a teeny bit.

When avoiding errant passes, use hand signals. One of basketball’s most frustrating elements is the concept of sending a quick pass onto a teammate who has just moved in a different direction. Players should use hand signals often when available for a pass. If your teammate misses your signal, then they may miss the ball as well and the other team could gain possession.

TIP! If you have someone who can tape your game, you can view the recording to see how well you performed on the court. Can you see chances that you missed or ways that you could have done better? Be honest in your assessment but not overly critical.

Ask your fellow team members which of your skills that they admire. Do you have an area where you excel? Perhaps you have an excellent understanding of defensive strategies or you are the fastest player on your team. Discover what other people feel are your strongest skills and then set about perfecting them.

TIP! Dribble hard to avoid ball stealing. A hard dribble returns the ball back to you faster, leaving less chance of it being snatched by the other team.

If the other team has a good defense, passing the ball between your legs is a good option. This will make it very hard for your defender to get it. Mastering this skill will provide you with a major advantage on the court.

TIP! Try to keep the ball in your line of sight at all times. This means more than just being able to see well enough to play, but “seeing” the court deeply.

Try practicing looking in the opposite direction when you pass. This trick can be used successfully to confuse defenders. If you’re doing it correctly you can fake your opponent out so he/she moves towards that direction and then you pass the ball to a wide open teammate for a shot. When done smoothly it can be a game changer.

Free Throws

TIP! When on defense, try to keep yourself low whenever you can. This allows you to jump or react quicker.

Develop and use a consistent routine for shooting free throws. If you aren’t consistent, you will find that your shooting is off. The easiest way to make sure you’re doing great at free throws is to do repetitions of the same routines time and again. A break in your routine will foul the shot.

TIP! If you want a 2-3 zone to be turned into a machine that traps, your two defenders that are guarding should wait until your point guard is around ten feet past mid court. They can then run toward the point guard to trap him.

Maybe you recently learned the rules of the game. Maybe you are a long-time player. No matter what, the tips you’ve just read can help you increase your skills. Try this advice out whenever you can play.