TIP! It is easy to be focused on offense when you are learning how to play basketball, but you really should focus your practice on defense. Defense is what keep the other team from scoring.

Years ago, basketball was invented by Dr. It is an extremely popular sport all over the world today. After that it has become something that a lot of people have fallen in love with. Michael Jordan comes to mind. It then went from him to Magic Johnson to make the best players into celebrities. Continue reading to learn all the best tips about basketball.

TIP! Dribble while keeping your head upward and looking ahead. You need more practice if you feel that you cannot dribble without focusing on the ball.

It’s natural to be drawn towards offense as a novice, but the pros know defense is where the game is won or lost. Defense is what keep the other team from scoring. Offense is flashier, so it draws the attention of fans and journalists, but a team that can’t defend well won’t win any games.

TIP! It is important to know the right way to throw a bounce pass. Executed properly, a bounce pass will connect with the receiving player at the waist.

If you get possession of the ball a lot, you must learn the crossover technique. This move entails transferring the basketball from your left hand to your right hand and back again. The move must be done quickly if it is going to work. By having the ability to move either way quickly, you will become a better all-around player.

TIP! Completing passes to your teammates is just as important as dribbling the ball. It is difficult playing without dribbling; however, it helps the team make better passes.

Focus on your strengths to get better at basketball. Your talent might not make you a star; however, learning your strengths will help you become a better team player. Know what you are good at, then practice it until you’re absolutely perfect at it!

TIP! As you exercise to improve your game, it is important to work on your footwork and strength. Your balance will improve if you strengthen your core.

Be sure to get lots of practice on layups. You should expect layups to represent about 80% of all the shots you take in a game. Run full tilt to the basket, then smoothly jump and shoot. This running and jumping technique will help you learn how to jump and shoot better during the game.

TIP! If you’re shooting isn’t what you’d like it to be, make sure that your shoulders are in the correct position. Regardless of your skill level, if you don’t have your shoulders positioned correctly, you will miss.

Practice using different types of defenses. Learn how to play a man-to-man defense and a zone defense to get the best understanding of how the game works. Be sure to practice for this eventuality so you will not become rattled and lose the game.

TIP! Speed is everything in the sport of basketball. Speed always gives you an edge over your opponent.

Would you like to fool the opposing team? Try a pass back! To accomplish this pass, grasp the ball using your dominant hand. The next step is pull the basketball behind the back. Finally, flick your wrist towards the direction in which you wish that ball to travel. It can be a dangerous maneuver that catches the other team off guard.

TIP! Watch your own recorded games, and look for weak areas. Are you able to see what you’ve missed or things that you could improve on? Do not waste time criticizing yourself.

Make better passes through the use of coordinated hand signals. It can be frustrating to attempt to pass the ball to a team mate as that person is heading toward the basket. Hand signals help ensure that the player is ready to take the ball. If you don’t see a signal, you shouldn’t pass 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.

If you are shooting as well, pay attention to the position of your shoulders. If your shoulders are in a bad position, no matter how good you are, you won’t make the shot. To help improve your shot, focus on squaring up on each of your shots. You want your strong-side shoulder in perfect alignment with the rim.

TIP! If the opposing team is guarding you to much, you can try a pass between your legs. This will make it very hard for your defender to get it.

You want to always be aware of foot placement and what you’re doing. An errant toe to the baseline while holding the ball will result in an “out of bounds” call. If you travel without dribbling, you’re going to get yourself into a turnover situation. A foul will be called if your feet move while you attempt to screen other players.

TIP! When dribbling you want to keep your knees bent. It makes it much easier to control the ball while dribbling as opposed to standing straight up, which makes controlling the ball much harder.

Have a friend or family member tape your games so you can view how you appear on the court. You may see things differently as you observe the game and notice things you missed in the game. It is important that your assessment is an honest one, but isn’t overly critical. Sometimes, it helps a lot to see yourself as you really are and not as just you imagine yourself to be.

TIP! It is important that you remain in control of the ball despite which way your body is going. Dribbling during game play requires you to adopt a variety of dribbling skills.

All you need to have a basketball game is a basketball goal and a few friends. You will become a better player if you learn more about basketball. Use these tips to improve your game and keep getting better.