One of the most popular games on earth is basketball. Many people enjoy watching the NBA on television, playing on their own teams, or just shooting some hoops at the park. Naturally, if you play, you want to excel at the game. The following tips will help you improve your skills so you can win.
Watch your form while you dribble the ball. When you dribble, use the fingertips, not the palm. Doing so will allow you a greater degree of ball control. Dribble along the side of the body, not immediately in front of it, and keep the bounce to the waist level or below. Never look at the ball; instead, look forward.
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. The following technique should be practiced often. Start out by holding the basketball right in front of you. Use visualization to imagine the goal occurring. Once you’ve visualized this, take your shot as you just saw it in your head.
Free throws are as much mental as they are physical. Training your body is important, but you also have to be mentally ready for the shot. Stay focused and vigilant to improve your ability to make free throws.
A great way to bolster your basketball ability is to observe those who are considered to be the best in the sport. Go to as many pro games as possible, watch them on TV, or watch videos of them playing. Every player has skills that make them good, and you can work on the skills they use.
You want to be prepared for any type of defense the other team plays. You can count on quite a bit of the game being played in zone; however, you should not be surprised if it becomes one-on-one coverage just for the sake of confusion. This can cause your team to lose momentum to the other side if this isn’t something you’ve practiced.
One of the keys to becoming a great basketball player is developing core muscles. These core muscles for basketball include your lower back, hips and abs. These muscles form a bridge across the lower and upper parts of your body. When the core is weak, it is difficult to coordinate the movements of both halves. A core that’s solid and strong will allow you to use force that comes from your legs so you can jump higher and run faster.
Find out what your teammates like most about how you play? You may have a certain skill that you have perfected. Maybe you are quick like lightening or maybe you are a strong defender. Improve the skills where you tend to be a bit weaker while maintaining your stronger skills.
You must know your opponent in order to be tough on defense. Make sure that you’ve watched tapes that show the other player. You can also check out scouting reports. Figure out which people are right or left handed. Knowing an opponent’s dribbling, passing and shooting styles gives you a definite edge on defense. A person that knows about defending makes a strong defender.
When exercise, concentrate on perfecting footwork and strengthening your core muscles. Your body will be able to move quicker and be more balanced when you have srong core muscles. Work out your hips, back and abdomen. You will improve your speed and footwork if you jump rope like boxers do.
Practice passing while not looking in the direction of the pass. This will easily confuse your opponents. You give your teammate a better chance to make the shot because the opposing player is moving the wrong direction when you pass the ball. This play can be very powerful.
Using a weaker hand helps improve overall dribbling skills. Using both hands to dribble makes you a more effective player, especially when you’re trying to get past your opponent. Practice with your weak hand by tying your dominant hand behind your back. Soon enough you will develop those weak hand dribbling skills.
Strengthen your hands and forearms for better ball handling. Consider wrist curls and and exercise machine that focuses on strengthening each finger individually. One thing that is important to remember is that it is difficult to be static and be a scorer. Good dribbling skills will help you always stay in movement.
Dribble with force to prevent the ball from being stolen. When you dribble hard, the ball bounces back to your hand faster. That means there is less time for the other side to grab it. If you have somebody guarding you very closely, pass the ball to an open teammate.
Once you are in your defensive stance, remember to hold your ground. Shuffle your feet in a side to side motion, then use your opposite foot to push off and give you good leverage. If you never allow your feet to cross one another you will invariably be a very hard player to get passed.
To turn a normal 2-3 zone into a trapping machine, have your top two defenders (your guards) wait until the point guard has come about ten feet past the time line (midcourt). Then, they ought to trap the point guard. Then, have the forwards on blocks run to the wing players. Their point guard will probably hurl a pass that is easy for your own forwards to steal.
As you can see, there are many things you can do to improve your skills. You can improve your game by learning new techniques and practicing them often. Practice is really the secret to becoming a master of anything, so be sure you have a hoop, ball and free time available regularly. Whether you practice with a team, with friends or with younger people, it’s all about loving the game and making your skills better.