TIP! It’s natural to focus on offensive abilities when practicing the sport of basketball, but your practice time needs to focus on defense. Defense ultimately determines the winner of a game of basketball.

Basketball can be enjoyed by everyone. Basketball is fun to play regardless of your skill level. Your friends will definitely be impressed by your moves if you practice. Basketball is a complex sport so there is always opportunity to improve your game. Read on to discover a variety of tips and tricks to improve your game.

TIP! Having a good foundation is key when shooting the ball. While the all-time greats have shown time and time again how they can shoot while off-kilter, this is not the ideal way to score.

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 what keep the other team from scoring. While offensive players sometimes seem like the stars of the show, it is the efforts of defensive players that allow them to shine.

TIP! If you’re a jump shooter, don’t lift weights too often. You do need muscle conditioning and strength, but you can have too much when it comes to shooting field goals.

Watch how the pros play basketball. Try to go to games, watch televised games, or check out videos of the pros playing. You’ll see that every great player has specific skills that cause them to be great and you have the opportunity to practice what you’re watching them do.

TIP! Want to trick the other team? Back passes are a great way to confuse other players. Use the dominant hand to hold onto the basketball when trying this pass.

You want to be prepared for any type of defense the other team plays. Learn how to play a man-to-man defense and a zone defense to get the best understanding of how the game works. Practicing these techniques can give you a competitive edge over your competition.

TIP! Perform skills, practice your ball handling and shoot free throws when you are practicing alone. Even though you play on a team, practicing alone can be helpful.

Hand signals will help you avoid those errant passes. One of the most challenging aspects is trying to send the ball to your teammate as they are going for the basket. You can avoid this by using hand signals if a player is able to take a pass. If there is no signal, the player should not make the pass to them.

TIP! Hand signals will help you avoid those errant passes. It can be frustrating making a pass when a player moves away towards the basket.

Whenever you work out, practice footwork and work on your core strength. Your body is going to be more balanced and be able to move faster when you have strong core muscles. Work the muscles in your abdomen, back, buttocks and hips. Jump rope can be used to speed up your feet.

TIP! If you’re injured in a basketball game, don’t attempt to play while in pain. It is possible to receive an injury when playing basketball because it is a sport that is physically challenging.

Consistency in your approach is vital to becoming solid at free throws. Perhaps you will dribble twice, follow up by bending your knees, pulling your earlobe or performing some other ritualistic action for good luck. When you have a steady and consistent routine, your muscles will remember what to do to shoot those free throw shots.

TIP! Understanding your opponent is a good way to shut him down on defense. Watch tapes and stay up on scouting reports.

Using a weaker hand helps improve overall dribbling skills. Utilizing both hands to dribble the basketball and switching effortlessly is key to advantage over an opponent. Practice with your weak hand by tying your dominant hand behind your back. Your weak hand will soon develop better dribbling skills.

TIP! Quickness is a virtue in basketball. If you want the advantage, you need to be quicker than your opponents.

To play good defense, you have to upset and disrupt your opponent. Get them outside their comfort zone. Be aggressive in the moves you execute. Do not allow them to pick and choose their plays. The more aggressively smart team is usually the one who wins. Instead, you move first and throw them off their game.

TIP! If the other team has a good defense, passing the ball between your legs is a good option. Try practicing this by bouncing your ball hard in between your legs while stepping forward or backward.

To get a rebound of a free throw that one of your teammates is taking, you need to be sly with your feet. Slip around the defender moving your way and get the ball. This will allow you to score a rebound without getting penalized for a foul.

TIP! To increase the efficiency of your layups, begin your takeoff on the foot opposite from the hand you’re shooting with. This means that if you shoot with your right hand, take off from your left foot.

Don’t break out of defensive stance always remain in the proper defensive position. You can shuffle your feet to either side, or push with your opposing foot, so you will be ready and in position. Avoid getting your feet cross as this makes it much more difficult for the opponent to get by you.

TIP! Develop and use a consistent routine for shooting free throws. Inconsistency will ruin your shots.

Varying your pace and direction keeps the offense off guard. When running toward the hoop, plant your leading foot and start to straighten up. The guard will think you are slowing down and will also straighten themselves. As they do, push forward hard and run by them.

Strength Training

TIP! Practice your dribbling skills while shifting your momentum to alternate sides. Expect to encounter many different situations in a game.

It can be great help to do strength training when you’re training for basketball. You need both strength and endurance if you are going to excel. Even younger kids will benefit from strength training. As they get older you can use weights to help enhance their performance. Continue training throughout the adult years to maintain a constant performance.

TIP! Use the hand you aren’t dribbling with to keep the opponent away from the ball. Don’t push your opponent because that is a foul; however, you can use your arm as separator between your opponent and the ball.

Stay low when you play defense. This will help you be quicker on the jump and react to the man in front of you easier. Remain in a good defensive stance always. If you need to block the opposing team’s shot, resume your stance as soon as you can.

You can improve a weak hand by using it in daily life. You’ll find it becomes more controllable. Your basketball skills will benefit.

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. It’s best to be a winning team, than someone that lost the game.

Bend your knees when dribbling the basketball. Standing straight will make you see that it’s harder to handle and easier for the opposing players to take. Just a little bending at the knees can make a huge difference in your overall ball control.

TIP! Follow the path of the ball once it has left the hands of your teammate or the opposing player. Rebounds and recoveries are important parts of a basketball game.

Now you can show your stuff off on the court. Perhaps you have even learned a few new secrets. Don’t forget, the game should always be fun or it’s not worth playing. Whatever the case, it is fun to win though!