TIP! Dribbling the ball the right way needs to be done. When you dribble a basketball you have to use the fingertips instead of the hand’s palm.

A great thing about basketball is the simplicity of being able to pick up the basics. You can pick them up after just a minute or two. However, there are many advanced techniques that can be learned. Continue reading to learn the how you can become the best player.

TIP! To be a better basketball player you should concentrate on the things that make you great. You might not become a big basketball star based on your strengths, but you will be an asset to your team.

It’s natural to focus on offensive abilities when practicing the sport of basketball, but your practice time needs to focus on defense. Defense is essential to winning these games. While offense seems to get the praise, defense must be stellar in order to win.

TIP! Free throws are as much mental as they are physical. Of course, you can show your body how to make free throws.

You can learn how to pass well by drilling on it separately from dribbling. This helps to develop passing skills with your teammates, making it much more difficult if you’re standing in one spot and not dribbling. Don’t get too frustrated if you’re having a hard time when you start because after a while passes are going to be more accurate.

TIP! Watch the pro’s play if you want to improve your game. Whether seeing an all-pro on YouTube, attending a game in person, or sitting on the couch with buddies to watch your local professional team, there are many chances to observe the best.

Play basketball against yourself even during the off-season. Though basketball is surely a team sport, there may be times when you have nobody to play against. It’s okay! You can still get a lot accomplished with solo games. Work on your free throws or your pivot moves. You can always practice.

TIP! Passing the ball is an important part of playing basketball so practice making and receiving passes. When you practice, mix it up so that you can catch perfect passes and errant throws.

Never have your back to the ball so that you’re ready for anything in a basketball game. You will enjoy greater court awareness and avoid feeling surprised by rapid changes in game play. Knowing where the other players are on the court helps you open passing lanes and gives you more opportunities to take a shot.

TIP! As you exercise to improve your game, it is important to work on your footwork and strength. When you have strong core muscles, your body will be better balanced and will move faster.

Understand your opponent. You should be look at scouting reports, practicing techniques and watch tapes. For example, you might look to see which players favor their left side and which have dominant right hands. Studying your opponent is one of the best ways to be able to win the game. Knowledge can make you a strong defender.

TIP! Pay attention closely to the shoulders if you’re starting to slump when you shoot. No matter your skill level, you won’t make shots if your shoulders aren’t in the proper position.

Between the leg passes are usually helpful when another team’s players are riding you hard. Take a step back or forward and bounce the ball hard through your legs. Mastering this technique can give you a significant advantage.

TIP! To help improve your ball handling skills, start incorporating your weak hand into your dribbling. Opponents are a lot easier to blow by when you can dribble with ease using both hands.

You need to practice dribbling with your weak hand in order to be a more effective player. If you can dribble equally well with each hand, it is simpler to get past your opponents. Practice with your weak hand by tying your dominant hand behind your back. In no time, the weak hand will also be useful for dribbling.

TIP! Do drills where you try and get the basketball up a full-court in five dribbles or less. You will need to learn how to push the basketball in front of you while making long strides.

Dribble harder if you want to avoid the ball being stolen. This means you get the ball back from your opponent faster. If someone is close to you and is really good at guarding you, pass to another person that’s open.

TIP! Ensure that you have good court awareness. Vision is an integral part of making shots and catching passes.

A key play on defense is to draw a charge. By taking charge you can create a defensive stop so you can get the ball, and allows you to create setups so that the opponent will foul you. Perfecting this play can really give you an advantage on the court.

TIP! Never break your defensive stance when playing ball. Slide your feet from side to side or push off with your opposing foot so that you are always in position.

To increase your basketball playing abilities, consider strength training exercises. Stamina and physical strength are required for basketball excellence. Even the youngest players need to have strong arms and legs. As they start to get older, get them some weights to help them exercise harder. Continue training throughout the adult years to maintain a constant performance.

TIP! Alter your pace to confuse the opposition. When running towards the net, step on your front foot, and start to straighten up your body.

Bend the knees when you dribble a basketball. Opposing players can steal the ball more easily if you stand up straight because you can’t control the ball as well. Just bending a little bit at your knees can really help you to control the ball better.

Stop Dribbling

TIP! Keep all motion below the knees if possible. Defenders will have a more difficult time stealing the ball.

Don’t stop dribbling until you are ready to pass or shoot. You have few options remaining to you after you stop dribbling. If you choose against passing or shooting, you are stuck pivoting in place. The opposition will cling onto you like a magnet.

TIP! Make sure your off-court exercise is appropriate to help your on-court game. Sprinting will help you develop speed, while running long distances will help you develop great stamina.

Try using your non-dribbling hand like a barrier between the ball and your opponent. Don’t push your opponent because that is a foul; however, you may use your free arm to create a barrier that keeps your opponent away from the ball. Keep this hand up as you’re dribbling the ball with the other.

TIP! Maintain a rhythm to the dribble until you are ready to surprise the opponent. The opposing player expects you to maintain that rhythm, so when you switch things up you create an element of surprise.

Make sure that you are exercising properly for basketball. Sprint running can help improve on-court speed, while distance running is sure to boost your stamina. Lifting weights can build the muscle you need for shots and the hustle of the game. Building your muscles and your confidence will help you game in many ways.

TIP! When catching a rebound, be sure to land with legs that are spread wider than your shoulder span, to help keep your balance. Keep the hands on both sides of the ball, and make sure it stays close to the chest.

If you want to play better, communicate with your teammates so you know what they intend to do. Basketball is played by a team. Therefore offense and defense do not play one-on-one. By communicating, you can work together more efficiently. Be vocal on the court to form better communication with your teammates for play.

TIP! When you’ve got the ball, you must know when to take a shot, and then when you should pass it to another player who’s got a better shot. Instead of hogging the ball and losing the game when you fail to make the shot, be a team player and pass it off to the player who has the better chance to make the winning shot.

You might be a complete novice at basketball. You may have started playing when you were a small child. No matter what, the tips in the article above are great for helping you improve. Take heed of what you learned here and bring it with you next time you head to the court.