TIP! Make sure you are dribbling the right way. When you dribble, only use your fingertips instead of your palms.

Most people don’t try to do something unless they have taken their time to learn about it first. Great basketball players are not born that way, they work at being better players and continue to learn and practice. The following tips will help you learn how to play your best.

TIP! Teach yourself to throw bounce passes correctly. This means your pass should be aimed towards the receiving player at the level of his waist.

Make sure that you’re dribbling the ball correctly. When dribbling the basketball, use your fingertips rather than the palm of your hand. This helps you to control the ball better. Dribble to the side of your body rather than directly in front of you, bouncing at waist level. Keep your head up, do not stare down towards the ground.

TIP! There is a lot of pressure when shooting free throws. You can practice for hours on how to make the shot, but if you over think things or get distracted you will miss every time.

Free throw practice is vitally important. This kind of shot seems easy, but it really is not. Put this technique into practice as often as you can. First, hold the ball just above your nose, about 8 inches from your face. Look at the basket and imagine the ball going in it. Bend your knees to control the arc of the ball.

TIP! Practice catching passes as often as you can. Try to catch all of the passes that are thrown to you.

Practice your layups a lot. Almost 80% of shots will be layups. When you practice, you need to be able to run toward the basket at full speed, then shoot while jumping in the air. Practicing your running and jumping as a single motion will improve your technique faster than practicing them separately.

TIP! If you’re going to be a jump shooter, don’t lift too many weights. While muscle strength is good to have in any basketball position, it is possible to have too much for perimeter play.

Learn how to throw a proper bounce pass. It needs to get to the player at their waist. Try bouncing it about three-quarters to them. This all depends on many factors.

TIP! You can play basketball solo before and during the season. Many times you are unable to find people to play with.

You should practice pass catching regularly. Try to catch all of the passes that are thrown to you. In the heat of the game, not every pass is going to hit the bulls-eye. You’ll be helping out your team a great deal if you can catch their not so perfect passes.

Zone Defense

TIP! Have your team mates critique your playing skills. What areas are your strong points? Perhaps you are great backup or fast on your feet.

Do not only practice zone defense plays. While you might see a zone defense mostly, a team can switch defenses to man-to-man quickly in order to confuse you. If your practice hasn’t included this type of scenario, you might lose control rapidly.

TIP! To become a reliable free throw shooter, always go through the same routine before each shot. That could include a set number of dribbles, knee-bends or some other type of movement.

A great way to learn how to pass is by doing drills often with no dribbling. This is very hard to accomplish, but it forces you and your fellow players to work on accurate passing skills. Keep your emotions in check if quality passing is not happening right away as it takes time to perfect this part of the game.

TIP! You want to strive in practice to bring the ball all the way up the court in no more than five dribbles. This will help you to gain speed, stride length and control of the ball.

Lifting weights too much can actually take away from your jump shot. While muscle mass is good for any basketball position, perimeter play requires less than other positions. You might see a decrease in your goal percentages if your biceps become too large.

TIP! You need good vision if you are going to play basketball. This will prepare you for unexpected passes and help you evade defenders.

If you’re injured when playing basketball, don’t push through the pain. You can easily tear a muscle or even break a finger while playing. Continuing to play when you are in pain can make an injury worse. Be sure to seek medical care if you have a serious injury.

TIP! If an opponent charges at you, let him run into you. Letting the other guy run into you stops the game without having to use a time out, and adds another four to the opponent’s total.

Never have your back to the ball so that you’re ready for anything in a basketball game. This will help you stay on top of quick changes in possession or plays attempted by your opponent. Make sure you also have the court in your line of vision as well, so you know when and where you can drive in for the score.

TIP! Do not release your defensive stance. Use a shuffling side to side motion to ensure you are in position.

One thing to consider if your shooting percentage drops is that your shoulders may be inconsistent when you are shooting. When the shoulders are wrongly positioned, your shot is unlikely to succeed. To help improve your shot, focus on squaring up on each of your shots. Your dominant shoulder must be lined up with the rim.

TIP! When you’re working with defense, staying low is a good idea. This allows you to jump or react quicker.

Learning to fix your own car would bring you a great sense of accomplishment. Pride that is not easily matched but can be bolstered by learning and reading about how you can improve your game. This can help you and your team score more.