TIP! It is important to keep your balance when you shoot. Everyone has watched a pro player drift out of bounds while still making their shot, but this isn’t something to emulate.

Basketball can be enjoyed by everyone. People from all walks of life are able to have a lot of fun when playing a game of basketball. Gather your friends and show them your new moves. Looking for a new move or two? This article will teach you some great new moves!

TIP! If you’re going to be a jump shooter, don’t lift too many weights. Perimeter players don’t need the muscle strength that is necessary for other team members.

It is important that you perfect dribbling the ball. Avoid using your palm while dribbling. Instead, use your fingertips. This gives you the best ball control. Dribble to your body’s side instead of doing it out front, and bounce the ball at your waist’s level. Never look at the ground. Always look up.

TIP! If you get injured while playing basketball, do not try to play through the pain. This is a physically challenging game, so you may end up hurt much worse.

Perfect your free throw. This is something that seems simple, but in reality it can be hard. Practice frequently using these techniques. Start by holding your ball before your face. Keep looking towards the goal and think about the ball getting into that goal. You should then shoot and try following the trajectory you visualized.

TIP! Ask fellow team members what they like about your skills on the court. Can they tell you what you’re really good at? Perhaps you are great backup or fast on your feet.

Make sure that you practice your layups frequently. Layups sometimes wind up being 4 out of every 5 shots in basketball. When you practice, run toward the net, and then get a high jump in so you can smoothly shoot. This technique helps improve your on-court layup skills.

TIP! Understanding your opponent is a good way to shut him down on defense. Watch tapes of their games and see how others move on the court.

Practice using different types of defenses. Most of the basketball game will probably be played in this zone, but the other team might decide to surprise you and do some man-to-man coverage. Be sure to practice for this eventuality so you will not become rattled and lose the game.

TIP! Whenever you work out, practice footwork and work on your core strength. With a stronger core, you’ll be able to balance better.

You can play a great defensive game if you know the opposition well. Watch tapes and stay up on scouting reports. For example, you should know which of the players are left-handed and which are right-handed. The more you understand what you are up against, the more likely you are to develop an effective strategy during games. The more knowledgeable a defender is, the stronger he is.

TIP! Pay close attention to your shoulders if you’ve suddenly developed a shooting slump. If you do not have your shoulders positioned properly, you will not make the shot.

If your shooting is suffering, take a close look at your shoulders. Regardless of your skill level, if you don’t have your shoulders positioned correctly, you will miss. To help improve your shot, focus on squaring up on each of your shots. If your right hand is your dominant hand, your right shoulder must be aligned with the rim. For left-handedness, the opposite is true.

TIP! One of the most vital attributes one needs to play basketball is quickness. Try to play faster than your opponents for an advantage.

Speed is everything in the sport of basketball. If you can play quicker than the opposing team can, then you will be at an advantage. In order to play fast, you must practice drills. But don’t try to go even faster than you actually are. Playing beyond your speed cause the game to get out of control with various turnovers and errant passes.

TIP! Take charges whenever you have the opportunity. When you do that, you can earn defensive stops, get the ball back, and set up foul shots against the other team.

Have someone taper your games and then watch it to see how you look on the court. Did you spot something that could be improved? Appraise your performance honestly but don’t be overly harsh with yourself. Sometimes it’s beneficial to look at yourself the way you really look and not just like you think you look.

Free Throws

TIP! Never stop your dribble unless you are going to shoot or pass the ball. When you stop dribbling the ball, you only have a limited amount of plays you can perform.

Your routines must be consistent for free throws. When you stay consistent, you get better success. Practice makes perfect when shooting free throws. If you don’t stick to your routine, you could miss the shot.

TIP! Use the hand you aren’t dribbling with to keep the opponent away from the ball. Don’t push your opponent because that is a foul; however, you can use your arm as separator between your opponent and the ball.

To gain greater dribbling skill, always practice with the weaker hand as well as the more dominant one. Using both hands to dribble makes you a more effective player, especially when you’re trying to get past your opponent. Bind your dominant hand so you will be forced to make use of your weaker side. You will get new dribbling skills with your weak hand.

TIP! When someone misses a corner shot, you can bet the ball bounces across the court. Place yourself in position after this shot is made.

When dribbling, bend your knees. Opposing players can steal the ball more easily if you stand up straight because you can’t control the ball as well. A bit of a bend will boost your control.

TIP! For the best balance, make sure you land with your feet spread apart. Keep your hands along any side and hold it up to your chest tightly.

You can improve your shooting skills by practicing with shots from different spots on the court. Try dribbling a little and pull up for your shot. Focus on the target when airborne, but never before. This way, you will be ready for the rapid pace of game play.

Stop Dribbling

TIP! If you guard someone that bigger than you are, try staying between the person with the ball and them. In this position you prevent them from receiving a pass and shooting it over your head.

Only stop dribbling if you want to shoot or pass. When you stop dribbling, then you limit your options. If you choose against passing or shooting, you are stuck pivoting in place. That will allow your opponents to double team you and potentially steal the ball.

TIP! Part of being a great basketball player is knowing when it is time to give the ball to someone else. Better to be responsible for a shot that leads to a win, than to be that one player whose bad shot cost the team a win.

If you want to perform your best in basketball, you need to eat well. Complex carbohydrates and protein will give you energy to ensure that you get through a long, fast-paced basketball game. Some good things to add to a diet would be peanut butter, nuts, chicken, and wheat breads. Try to avoid overuse of salt or sugar in your diet.

Always anticipate where a missed basket might go so you can grab the resulting rebound. Pay attention to this as you prepare for a rebound.

TIP! Learning to pivot is important when playing basketball. Practice often so you do not have to think about pivoting during a game.

Make strong team environments off and on the court. When a basketball team gels fully, their game can reach entirely new heights. When you know and trust your teammates, you can accomplish a lot more on the court.

TIP! A good thing to do on defense is to get your opponent near the sideline. A player has many more options when not on the sidelines.

Confidence is key in the game of basketball, and everything you’ve read here should have improved yours. You might even have some tricks up your sleeves that your friends don’t know about. Have fun and keep practicing. Of course, winning is always pretty fun as well!