TIP! Many people only direct their attention to the offensive part of the game without realizing that defense is the key to winning. Many times, defense actually wins the game.

When it comes to the game of basketball, no one knows everything, not even the greatest player. Times change, and so does the game of basketball. You must always be ready to learn and stay updated. Do you want to be a good player? The following article will give you some great advice to improve your game.

TIP! It is vital that you learn to crossover the basketball while dribbling. Crossovers involve moving the ball from hand to hand.

If you handle the ball often, you need to learn how to do a crossover. Crossovers involve moving the ball from hand to hand. If order for the maneuver to be a success, it has to be performed with speed. Once you master the art of the crossover dribble, you will be able to change directions quicker.

TIP! In order to be a great shooter, good balance is key. Everyone has watched a pro player drift out of bounds while still making their shot, but this isn’t something to emulate.

A good tip is to practice your layups on a daily basis. Eighty percent of the shots taken in a game are layups. Practice running while dribbling, jumping and shooting as smoothly as you can. Practicing your running and jumping as a single motion will improve your technique faster than practicing them separately.

Free Throws

TIP! Would you like to fool the opposing team? Trick them using a back pass. Perform this pass by holding the ball using your dominant hand.

Hitting free throws is a mental challenge as well as a physical one. Of course, you can show your body how to make free throws. However, if you’re not in the right state of mind, you won’t succeed. Relax and concentrate on your basket to increase your free throws.

TIP! Have a friend or family member tape your games so you can view how you appear on the court. Did you spot something that could be improved? Evaluate what you see honestly, but don’t be too hard on yourself.

Lay off the weights if you are trying to become a jump shooter. Perimeter players don’t need the muscle strength that is necessary for other team members. You will notice that most basketball players have well-defined muscles that are not overdeveloped.

TIP! Alter your pace to confuse the opposition. While you run at the net, plant the front foot and start straightening your body.

Before, during and after the season, play out games by yourself. Even though basketball is usually played with teams, it is sometimes the case that there just isn’t anyone around to play with. That should not matter. You’ll still be able to get a lot done when playing solo. You can work on pivots and free throws. Many things can be practiced.

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. Then they should run to the point guard and trap him.

If you’re posting up, good footwork is the key to getting open and getting a good shot. While actually being beneath the basket is key, establishing a good position prior to the opposition is even more so. After positioning yourself on the court, make sure that you are secure. The key to this relies on having good footwork.

TIP! When dibbling the ball, bend your knees. Opposing players can steal the ball more easily if you stand up straight because you can’t control the ball as well.

Keeping your fingers spread will facilitate better ball handling. This way, you won’t lose the ball when holding it. Also, keep your palm off the ball. You should only use your fingers to touch the ball when passing or shooting.

TIP! In order to better your shooting skills, you must practice shooting hundreds of times each day from various position on the court. Try dribbling a little and pull up for your shot.

If the opposing team is breathing down your neck, it’s a good idea to pass the ball between your legs. Step forward and back while dribbling the ball between your legs hard. This is a tricky move, but it will provide you a good advantage when you play.

TIP! Keep dribbling until you want to shoot or pass. You are limited once you cease dribbling.

Practice passing while looking the opposite direction. This will make your actions very confusing to the other team. If you do it right, this draws your opponents’ focus the wrong way. It can be a really powerful play.

TIP! To help ward off your opponent, practice using your other hand to help shield him away from you. However, you’re not actually going to push with this hand; instead, you’re going to separate yourself using this hand.

If you want to dribble the basketball better, you need to practice dribbling with your weaker hand. If you’re using both hands to dribble the ball well then you can get by an opponent easily. Immobilize your dominant hand by tying it behind your back, then practice using your other hand for everything. Soon enough you will develop those weak hand dribbling skills.

TIP! Be sure that off-court exercises are proper for playing on-court. Sprints helps with individual plays, and long-distance running gives you stamina.

To get a rebound of a free throw that one of your teammates is taking, you need to be sly with your feet. The more quickly you get under the basket, the better you chance of grabbing the rebound. This will allow you to score a rebound without getting penalized for a foul.

TIP! A good way to improve your game is by finding out from your teammates what they plan to do. In order to win games, you have to work together as a team.

To avoid having the ball stolen, dribble hard. When you dribble hard, the ball bounces back to your hand faster. That means there is less time for the other side to grab it. If you are being guarded closely, halt your dribble and pass to an open teammate.

TIP! When someone misses a corner shot, you can bet the ball bounces across the court. Figure out where it will be and rebound the ball.

Here is how you can change a normal two-three zone to become a trapping machine. You will need for the top two guards to wait until the time when the point guard is approximately 10 feet beyond the midcourt. At that point, both guards should move in for the trap. Your forwards should sprint to cover the other players on the outside. The point guard will then probably throw an easily interceptable pass.

TIP! Be sure that you’re not double dribbling. This occurs whenever you resume dribbling after a brief pause.

Hopefully, you are more confident with your basketball skill after reading the above tips. These techniques will help improve your game. You should never stop learning new techniques and perfecting old ones. Keep these tips in mind in order to bring your game up another level.