TIP! Many people only direct their attention to the offensive part of the game without realizing that defense is the key to winning. Defense is what wins basketball games.

Basketball is a sport that millions of people all over the world love. You can play a game with friends, or become a professional with enough effort. Use this article to get more of an understanding of the game of basketball.

TIP! Free throws are an excellent skill to practice in your spare time. That’s a shot that appears simple but is actually difficult in reality.

Better your basketball skills by watching the pros play. Go to professional games in person and/or watch them online or on TV. You will see that each great player has certain skills that make him great and you can practice what you see him doing.

TIP! Get educated on the way to properly pass the ball on a bounce. A useful bounce pass will hit the receiving player at waist level.

Keeping your fingers spread wide is important for holding onto the ball. You are more likely to hold onto the ball this way. Also, keep your palm off the ball. Remember to maintain contact with the ball through your fingers only.

TIP! Play games against yourself in and out of season. Sometimes you cannot find a team of people to play basketball with.

Quickness is a key skill in basketball. Try playing faster than the opponents for a better advantage. Playing fast takes practice, though, and steady drilling. However, don’t try and push past your limits. If you try to rush your play, and can’t keep up, you will turn the ball over or make unforced mistakes.

TIP! Avoid errant passes by the use of hand signals. You can become easily frustrated when a teammate does a poor job of anticipating your next passing move.

Have your games taped so you can play them back later and observe your court presence. Can you see where you can improve your form? Are there things you might have done differently? Look at how you did and judge yourself. Sometimes you think of yourself as something you are not.

TIP! Never play through an injury on the court. Basketball is very physical and there’s always a risk of injury.

When doing a layup, start running using the weaker of your two feet. This means that when you’re shooting from your right hand you have to use your left foot to take off. This will allow you to be more balanced while moving closer to the basket while keeping your body between the defender and you.

Free Throws

TIP! If you need some help seeing where you need work, try to get a friend or relative to record your games. Can you see where you can improve your form? Are there things you might have done differently? Be honest with yourself, but avoid being too critical.

If you wish to shoot free throws better, you have to have a routine that’s consistent. Inconsistency will ruin your shots. A great way to get better at free throws is to practice, practice and then practice the same routine some more. If your free throw routine is out of whack, you will miss.

TIP! For more consistency in making those free throws, stick with the same sequence of motions before you take each shot. You could dribble twice, touch your forehead, bend your knees, or some other kinds of movements.

If you want to better your dribble, start practicing with your weaker hand. Being able to effortlessly dribble with both hands gives you the ability to run both sides on an opponent and keep them off guard. Try tying the dominant hand behind you and forcing yourself to just using your weak hand. You will quickly strengthen your non-dominant hand for dribbling.

TIP! Accept a charge when you can. Taking charges gives you an opportunity to get defensive stops, get the ball and lay the groundwork for fouls.

In your drills, you should attempt to move the basketball the length of the court in fewer than half a dozen dribbles. This seems an impossible feat when you start. By working on this drill regularly you develop speed and great, lengthy strides. In games, this drill will become useful when you have fast break opportunities.

TIP! Practice shooting hundreds of shots during each training, and you quickly improve shooting skills. To improve even more, practice dribbling the basketball and then pull up fast for a quick shot.

Hopefully you have a better understanding of what it takes to play basketball. It really is not that hard, you just need a bit of knowledge and dedication. After you begin playing it you probably won’t want to stop. Go out there and enjoy yourself!