TIP! A lot of novice players mostly focus on their offensive skills, but developing good defensive skills will help you become a better player. Basketball games are won with a good defense.

Millions of people love playing and watching basketball. The best way to really enjoy basketball, either as a player or as an enthusiastic spectator, is to understand it completely. This article will help you do that.

TIP! Pay attention to what you are good at. Your best talent may not make you the star of every game, but learning to play your best angle will help you contribute more to the team.

Practice shooting free throws. These shots look easy on television, but are actually hard when you are doing the shooting. Practice frequently using these techniques. Place the ball right in line with your face. Maintain focus on the basket and try to visualize your basketball falling through the hoop. Shoot the ball how you imagine it going in.

TIP! It is important that you practice layups. You should expect layups to represent about 80% of all the shots you take in a game.

Bounce passes are extremely efficient when done properly. In order for a bounce pass to be sufficient, the person should receive the ball around their waist. Remember you should bounce the ball approximately three-quarters of the distance between yourself and the receiving player. But, there are some factors that can change this.

TIP! Making free throws are almost as much a mental part of the game as they are a physical part. Training your body is important, but you also have to be mentally ready for the shot.

Learn how to block out movement, noise and other distractions when taking a free throw. Training your body is important, but you also have to be mentally ready for the shot. Relax yourself and concentrate on your shot.

TIP! Would you like to completely fool the opposing team, making them look silly? Back passes are a great way to confuse other players. To work it, place the ball in your most dominant hand.

Keep your skills sharp in the off-season by playing different challenging games. Basketball is a multiple player sport, but other people won’t always be around. No problem. Solo games also help. Go to the free throw line and work on your shots. You can always find things to work on.

TIP! If you slump when you shoot, look at what your shoulders are doing. If you have bad shoulder position it doesn’t matter how great you are the shot isn’t going to go in.

You should ask your teammates about your strengths and weaknesses. Can they tell you what you’re really good at? They may say that you are a great team defender or are always playing with excellent speed. Find out what others perceive as your natural gifts and build upon those more completely.

TIP! Speed is a key attribute in the game of basketball. Try playing faster than the opponents for a better advantage.

Never turn away from the ball so that you can always be prepared for what’s coming. Passes and turnovers won’t take you by surprise because you will be more aware of what is happening on the court. Always be on the lookout for open areas where you can seize easy scoring opportunities.

TIP! Consistency in your approach is vital to becoming solid at free throws. That could include a set number of dribbles, knee-bends or some other type of movement.

In order to handle the ball correctly, spread your fingers out. This gives you better control of the ball. Don’t let your palm touch the ball either. When shooting or passing the ball, only your fingers should contact the ball.

TIP! Do drills where you try and get the basketball up a full-court in five dribbles or less. You may find this very challenging, but once accomplished it will give you a real edge.

When trying to improve your strength to have better basketball footwork, work on building up your core. Your body is going to be more balanced and be able to move faster when you have strong core muscles. You must work out your hip, back and abdomen muscles. Just like with boxing, you can do a little speed and footwork training with a jump rope.

TIP! Take charges whenever possible. Taking charges gives you an opportunity to get defensive stops, get the ball and lay the groundwork for fouls.

If you find yourself unable to shoot well, consider your shoulders. You won’t be able to make a shot if your shoulders aren’t in the right position. Ensure that you line up your shoulders so that they are squared with the basketball net. Your dominant shoulder should also be lined up perfectly with the rim.

TIP! Using your weak hand to brush your teeth can help you build skills with that hand. These tasks help to make your weaker hand feel more natural when you use it on the court.

Ask a friend to record your games so that you can see how yourself in action. Do you see anything you could do differently? You can use this information to improve your game. This gives you an unfettered view of how you actually performed on the court, rather than relying solely on your memory of the game.

Free Throw

TIP! Make sure that you are exercising properly for basketball. Sprints help you gain skill in individual plays, while running longer distances will increase your stamina.

Create and stick to a routine each time you prepare to shoot a free throw. Whatever you do, from bending your knees to dribbling three times, do every time. Just remember it has to be fast and consistent. The reason is, this routine will put your body on alert that the next thing coming is a free throw. This will help insure your success.

TIP! Double dribbling is a major rule, and something that must always be avoided. A double dribble occurs when you’re done dribbling one time and then begin to do it again a little while afterwards.

In order to be successful with layups, the foot that is opposite from shooting hand is the one you should take off from. If you use your right hand to shoot, use your left foot to take off. This way you keep your body away from defenders, your momentum going in the direction of the basket and your body stays balanced.

TIP! As you hit the ground after catching a rebound, improve your balance by spreading your legs wider than your shoulder span as you land. Clasp your hands around the sides of the ball, and clutch it tightly to your chest.

A consistent pre-shot routine when at the line will increase your chance at success. If you stay inconsistent, you miss a shot. You can shoot better free throws by making sure you use the same exact routine every time, and of course practice. If your routine is off, then you will miss the shot.

TIP! Try to remain calm when shooting. It’s important that the basket is your main focus.

The excitement that basketball creates for millions of fans across the globe s hard to match. People new to the sport, may be confused if they don’t understand all the rules and subtleties. It is our sincere hope that this article contains information that will be helpful to basketball lovers of every skill and ability level.