TIP! You need to keep your balance if you’re shooting. While the all-time greats have shown time and time again how they can shoot while off-kilter, this is not the ideal way to score.

There is always more to learn about basketball. It is especially tough when you consider that the game of basketball is constantly evolving. Learn to get the upper-hand of your competition. Read on to find out how to get the edge on the competition.

TIP! Practice your layup shot as frequently as possible. You should expect layups to represent about 80% of all the shots you take in a game.

Dribble the ball the right way. When you dribble, use the fingertips, not the palm. This allows you to control the ball much better while you dribble. Dribble on the sides of your body instead of directly before you, and bounce it waist level. Keep your head up and do not look at the ground.

TIP! A bounce pass is an important technique to learn. The bounce pass needs to reach the player at waist level.

Learn what a crossover is and how to do it. This technique passes the ball back and forth from the right hand to the left hand. The move must be done quickly if it is going to work. Once you have learned how to do a crossover, you can travel down the court quickly.

TIP! Free throws have a huge mental element to them. You are able to train your hands and legs to free throw well, but if you think you will fail, you will.

Start out with proper balance before attempting to take a shot. Having good balance will allow you to keep better control of the ball as well as play a better defense. These shots are improvisational and usually desperate attempts. You need the right balance to shoot; it is the only way to eventually make consistent baskets.

TIP! You can learn how to better pass the ball if you run drills without the dribble. This helps to develop passing skills with your teammates, making it much more difficult if you’re standing in one spot and not dribbling.

Make sure you spend your time focusing on your strengths. While you may have a particular skill that isn’t going to make you stand out as the star player, honing it can help you become an integral part of your team’s success. Understand where you excel, and work on those talents until they are perfected.

TIP! If you have a kid wanting to play basketball in high school, be certain that they are properly training their core muscles. That means their hips, lower back and abs.

A good way to get your basketball game up to speed is to start trying to see how the pros are playing. Go to a bunch of professional games in person, watch them on television, or just get online to search for basketball videos. You will see that each great player has certain skills that make him great and you can practice what you see him doing.

TIP! Ask your teammates what they like about the way you play. Find out what they perceive as your best skill.

Passing the ball is an important part of playing basketball so practice making and receiving passes. When you’re practicing, you should drill in being able to catch random throws in addition to passes that are perfect. Understand that during a game, you will receive very scattered passes. Some will be good; some won’t. Learning how to catch these errant passes will put you at an advantage.

TIP! Spread your fingers out to handle the ball properly. This can help you avoid losing it when you hold it.

Do not restrict your practices to zone defenses alone. Your opponent may change their game up to keep you on your toes. Failure to prepare for this type of tactic makes you more vulnerable and hurts your team.

TIP! Build your core strength and work on your footwork. Your body is going to be more balanced and be able to move faster when you have strong core muscles.

If you become injured when playing basketball, stop immediately. Basketball is physically challenging, and injuries are not uncommon. Trying to be tough so you can keep going, even when you’re just a little uncomfortable, can make an injury worse. If you have a very serious injury, talk to a doctor.

TIP! When playing a game of basketball, have a friend tape the game. This way, you can take a look at your game.

Ask your teammates what they like about the way you play. Do they feel you are really good at something? It may be that you are quick on your feet or that you are always there to back them up. Learn what other’s see as your natural skills and make sure to keep and develop those skills more fully.

TIP! Do your free throw shooting the same way every time. It could be that you dribble several times, bend at the knees, brush your hair out of your eyes or do something else.

It’s great to be quick in basketball. To get an advantage over an opposing player, you must have the quickest reactions. You have to be steady as you play quickly. Avoid playing faster than your abilities allow. This can cause you to get out of control and make careless mistakes.

TIP! Create a routine to improve your free throw success. Inconsistent shooting will lead to inconsistent results.

Ask someone to take a video of you playing and watch it. Looking at tapes can help you identify strengths and weaknesses. 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.

TIP! Strengthen your hands and forearms for better ball handling. Wrist curls are especially effective at making you better able to handle a basketball like you could dribble sleepwalking.

When doing a layup, start running using the weaker of your two feet. What this practically means is that if your right hand is your shooting hand, you need to take off with your left foot. Also, this will improve your balance as you approach the basket.

TIP! A good way to stay defensive is to have a defensive stance. Slide sideways and use your back foot to push off in order to maintain the defensive stance in stride.

Using a weaker hand helps improve overall dribbling skills. Being ambidextrous on the court makes it more difficult for defenders to figure out what you will do next. You can actually force yourself to utilize your weak hand by tying your other hand behind you. Soon enough you will develop those weak hand dribbling skills.

TIP! Varying your pace and direction keeps the offense off guard. Try to block the net by planting your foot hard.

Dribble with force to prevent the ball from being stolen. A hard dribble returns the ball back to you faster, leaving less chance of it being snatched by the other team. When you are being guarded closely, pass the ball.

Start Straightening

TIP! Create a team environment that is tough on the court and off of it. A cohesive team is an effective team, and basketball teams are no exception.

Altering your own pace is a good way to disrupt the opposition. When you running towards the basket, try planting the front foot and start straightening up. Your defender is going to assume that you’re slowing your speed and will start straightening up, too. When they do, try pushing forward hard and running right past them.

TIP! You will be more balanced when landing after catching a rebound if you will land with legs spaced wider than shoulder-width apart. Keep your hands along any side and hold it up to your chest tightly.

Now that you’ve read these tips, you should now much more confident about playing on the court. These tips will make you a better player. Practice daily and continue learning. Keep these tips in mind as you begin to enhance and sharpen your basketball skills.