TIP! Free throws are an excellent skill to practice in your spare time. These shots look easy on television, but are actually hard when you are doing the shooting.

Do you enjoy basketball, but think that you don’t know much about it? You are not the only one. Lots of folks watch basketball without really understanding the game. This article will help you play just like them.

TIP! One of the most important skills when playing basketball is balance. Everyone has seen professional basketball players make a shot from 20 feet away as they are falling.

When learning the game of basketball, it’s easy to get caught up in offensive play. But you should also give plenty of attention to defense. Basketball games are often won by great defensive play. While offensive players sometimes seem like the stars of the show, it is the efforts of defensive players that allow them to shine.

TIP! Be sure to watch professional games to learn some great tips and tricks to improve your game. Get tickets to some pro games, if possible, or catch some games on television.

It is important that you perfect dribbling the ball. Use the fingertips, not the palm, for the best dribbling. You’ll have a lot more control over the ball this way. When dribbling the basketball you should bounce it to your side instead of right in front. Always look up and never look down at the ground.

TIP! Never practice only against the zone. A lot of the game is sure to be played in the zone, but your opponent could change to man-to-man coverage.

Practice your layups a lot. Layup shots make up nearly 80% of a game’s shots. When you practice, you need to be able to run toward the basket at full speed, then shoot while jumping in the air. Perfecting this skill will enable you to get to the rim effortlessly during a game.

TIP! Prior to basketball season, and even during it, you can play solo games. Basketball is sport played in teams, but there are times when no one is around to play with you.

Learn the way to throw proper bounce passes. Executed properly, a bounce pass will connect with the receiving player at the waist. Try bouncing it about three-quarters to them. But, there are some factors that can change this.

Jump Shot

TIP! Never have your back to the ball so that you’re ready for anything in a basketball game. This provides court awareness and prevents you from unexpected turnovers or quick passes.

Lifting weights too much can actually take away from your jump shot. Being weighed down by too much bulky muscle can have a negative impact on your jump shot. You might see a decrease in your goal percentages if your biceps become too large.

TIP! Work on core strength when you work out. Your body will naturally balance well if you have strong core muscles.

What do your teammates admire about your skills? Are you great at any one thing? They may say you’re fast or that you share well. Find out what your strong points are in the eyes of others. This way you can develop your most valuable skills.

TIP! You need to be quick to play good basketball. If you want the advantage, you need to be quicker than your opponents.

The key to ball control is to spread your fingers out. That makes it less likely that you lose control of the ball. Avoid putting your palm on the ball, too. When shooting or passing the ball, only your fingers should contact the ball.

TIP! To get better at shooting free throws, make sure to keep a consistent pre-shot routine. This may mean you want to dribble three times, touch your forehead, bend at the knees, or do anything else.

When your shooting isn’t accurate, check out your shoulder position. If your shoulders aren’t correct, you may not be able to make the shots. Keep your shoulders square to the hoop. Then, make sure that your shooting side is lined up directly to the rim.

TIP! Practice looking the other way when passing. This can go a long way toward confusing the opposition.

Perform drills where you attempt to get the ball up full-court in 5 dribbles or less. This seems an impossible feat when you start. By working on this drill regularly you develop speed and great, lengthy strides. It can mean easier lay-ups when dealing with fast breaks and it can help your teammates for just a moment.

TIP! Make layups count by taking off with the foot that is opposite to your shooting hand. Thus, if you use your right hand for shooting, you need to push off using your left foot.

Change your pace up to throw the offense off. When you’re moving towards the net, act like you’re going to straighten up. This will confuse your opponent into adjusting their stance. Use this opportunity to sprint past your opponent.

TIP! If you want improve your free throws, you have to develop a routine. If you’re consistent, your shots will be too.

In summary, basketball is a sport that you love but really weren’t sure why until you took in this article. By this point, you are enjoying a stronger sense of confidence in your abilities. Keep reading to learn how you can improve your game!