TIP! To be a better basketball player you should concentrate on the things that make you great. The best talent you have isn’t going to have you starring in every highlight reel, but having a good skill set can benefit your team.

Practice is of the utmost importance if you are intent on improving your game. It is not only important to practice, but to improve through your practice as well. You should keep reading if you want to learn more about strategies you can use to become a better player.

TIP! Make layups a part of your daily practice regimen. Eighty percent of the shots taken in a game are layups.

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 wins basketball games. Offense may score points but defense keeps the other team from scoring points that your team will have to match.

TIP! A great way to learn how to pass is by doing drills often with no dribbling. Playing the game without the use of dribbling is a challenge, but it can help you and your team learn to make more precise passes.

Dribbling the ball the right way needs to be done. You want to dribble with the tips of your fingers, not your whole hand. You’ll have a lot more control over the ball this way. Always dribble to your side, not your front. Keep your head up, do not stare down towards the ground.

TIP! If you’re a jump shooter, don’t lift weights too often. Muscle flexibility is more important than muscle mass.

Bad passes can be avoided with the right hand signals. It can be frustrating passing to a teammate when you’re both heading to the basket. Avoid this using hand signals to see if they can get the pass. Without a signal, there shouldn’t be a pass.

TIP! Build hand signals so passes are more successful. It’s frustrating to pass to your teammate at the very moment they’re heading toward the basket.

You may get injured while practicing or playing. Don’t try to play if you are hurt. Basketball is physically demanding and you can easily get hurt. If you try to keep playing, you can hurt yourself worse. Don’t hesitate to see the doctor if you feel the injury warrants it.

TIP! Have other players give you information about what they think are your strengths and weaknesses. You may have a certain skill that you have perfected.

Have your team mates critique your playing skills. Find out what they perceive as your best skill. Maybe you are quick like lightening or maybe you are a strong defender. Discover what other people feel are your strongest skills and then set about perfecting them.

TIP! To properly handle the ball, you have to spread your fingers out. This can help you to remain in control of the ball at all times.

Remember to spread your fingers when handling the ball. The ball will not get away if you always keep your fingers spread when handling the ball. Keep your palm off the ball too. You should only use your fingers to touch the ball when passing or shooting.

TIP! When working out, focus on building your core strength and perfecting your footwork. Your balance will improve if you strengthen your core.

In order to be your best on defense, take the time to completely understand the player you are guarding. Watch tapes and stay up on scouting reports. See if you can determine each players strong and weak sides. Once you have a solid idea of your opponent, you can dial in on the best way to defend. Understanding the intricacies of the game will make you a better player.

TIP! Try practicing looking in the opposite direction when you pass. This will confuse your opponents.

Work on core strength when you work out. By developing strong core muscles, you will be able to recover quickly and keep your balance. Your muscles in your buttocks, hips, abdomen, and back should be worked. Jump rope like a boxer to improve your fancy footwork.

TIP! When dribbling, bend your knees. If you are standing straight, you will have a harder time controlling the ball and your opponent will be able to steal it more easily.

Watch tapes of yourself playing basketball to get a more objective perspective. You’ll likely see ways that you can improve. Don’t be too critical, but do be honest. Sometimes you think of yourself as something you are not.

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 you want to make the most of your layup, push up from the foot that is opposite the hand you will shoot from. What this practically means is that if your right hand is your shooting hand, you need to take off with your left foot. This can help you to remain balanced, continue moving toward the hoop, and will keep your body between the defender and yourself.

TIP! The hand not used to dribble the ball should serve as a wall separating the ball from the opposing players. You can’t push the person guarding you, but you can hold your arm out gently.

To be a strong defender, you must have the ability to disrupt and interfere with the opponents’ plans. Take them out of their own comfort zone. When you are guarding, do so aggressively. Do not let them call the shots. If you do, your opponent will run all over you. You need to adopt an aggressive style and react quickly so you can interrupt the patterns set by your opponents.

TIP! A missed shot from the corner of the basketball court will usually go to the opposite side. If so, you should be able to guess its next location and move to get the rebound.

In order to confuse the offense, try changing your pace. Try to block the net by planting your foot hard. Your opponent will assume you are slowing up, and thus will also straighten up. After that, push hard in a forward motion and scoot by them.

TIP! Be careful not to double-dribble. When you stop dribbling and then begin again is double dribbling.

To become a better three-point shooter, make sure you attempt shots from where the NBA three-point line would be. The standard line , high school and college lines are all going to be closer. Nailing shots from the NBA line can really help improve your overall shooting skills.

TIP! What your position is in relationship to the rebound can help you figure out if you will still have the ball. Jumping with both feet creates a more balanced, powerful motion.

If you want to play better, communicate with your teammates so you know what they intend to do. Basketball is a sport played by a team. This means that defense and offense are not one-on-one. Instead, all players help and support one another. Speak with them and make them aware of when you require assistance so that all of you play better.

TIP! When shooting the ball you have to be sure not to get nervous. It’s important to focus.

Practice all types of shots while in different distances and angles. Begin with practicing your grip and balance. It is possible to make an off-balance shot, but it has less accuracy. To get a perfect grip, use the basketball valve as a point of reference. Spread the fingers on your writing hand, and cover the valve with your palm.

TIP! Position yourself between the ball carrier and your opponent if they are bigger than you. This will make them not available for a pass which can help you to be sure that they can’t just get the ball and shoot over you.

This article will help you with your basketball skills, even if you play every day. Begin with a single concept and see the improvements take hold. Once you have practiced enough, each and every shot will make a positive impact for the team. This is what separates the professionals from the rookies.

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