Basketball is a beloved sport worldwide. You can play at your local park or in your driveway. Keep reading to learn how to become a better player.

TIP! Passing the ball is an important part of playing basketball so practice making and receiving passes. Be sure to be able to catch off-target throws on top of good ones.

Dribbling the ball the right way needs to be done. When you dribble, only use your fingertips instead of your palms. Using your fingertips provides you with more control. Dribble on the sides of your body instead of directly before you, and bounce it waist level. You should always look upwards instead of at the ground.

TIP! If you’ve developed somewhat of a shooting slump, focus on your shoulders. If you do not have your shoulders positioned properly, you will not make the shot.

Proper balance is essential when shooting. Even though a professional can hit all sorts of crazy off-balance shots, it is not the ideal method of shooting that you want to learn. These are not practiced skills, they are just flukes. Keep your balance so you can consistently win points.

TIP! Practice your footwork and control the position of your feet at all times. If you have the ball and you step outside the baseline, then you’re out of bounds.

Make sure you spend your time focusing on your strengths. Your skills may not turn you into the star player, but knowing how to make the most of your skills will make you a more valuable player. You can also focus on your weaknesses if you know what they are.

TIP! Practice passing while looking in the opposite direction. This should befuddle your opponent.

Free throws are as mental as physical. It is possible to practice the physical movements needed to make such a shot, but when your mental focus is lacking, you are likely to miss. Relax and concentrate on your basket to increase your free throws.

TIP! Practice dribbling with your weak hand as much as possible. Being ambidextrous on the court makes it more difficult for defenders to figure out what you will do next.

To make sure there are no errant passes, use hand signals. Basketball passes can be really frustrating when shot wrong. These common miscommunications can be avoided by utilizing hand signals, which tells the passing player the other player is ready for a pass. If they don’t signal, don’t pass to them.

TIP! Improve both forearms and hands to improve ball control. Wrist curls are great for bettering your ball handling in basketball to the point where you could practically do it sleepwalking.

To properly handle the ball, you have to spread your fingers out. This will keep the ball from getting away while you hold it. Avoid putting your palm on the ball, too. Only use your fingers to dribble, pass or shoot.

TIP! Ensure that you have good court awareness. Your eyesight will affect more than just making shots.

Quickness is a key skill in basketball. If you want the advantage, you’ve got more quickly. In order to play fast, you must practice drills. However, don’t try and push past your limits. This can cause you to get out of control and make careless mistakes.

TIP! You need to take a charge anytime you can. Taking charges gives you a chance for earning a defensive stop, gives your team the ball, and gives one more foul called in your favor.

A solid routine is necessary for improvement in free throw shooting. A consistent routine enables the shooter to have a perfect motion every time. The easiest way to make sure you’re doing great at free throws is to do repetitions of the same routines time and again. If you don’t do the routine right, then the shot won’t make it.

TIP! One good way to play good defense is to stay in the defensive stance at all times. Slide sideways and use your back foot to push off in order to maintain the defensive stance in stride.

Practice dribbling with both hands, dribble on both sides of your body and learn to dribble in front of you while taking large strides. Getting by an opponent should be a lot easier if you can dribble using both hands. Tie your dominant hand behind your back and force yourself only to use your weak hand. In no time, the weak hand will also be useful for dribbling.

TIP! 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). At that point, both guards should move in for the trap.

In order to be good at rebounding the ball off a missed free throw, you must be quick with your feet. The defender may be coming toward you, so its important to slip away from him and get the ball. This allows you to grab the rebound legally.

TIP! When dribbling, bend your knees. Standing straight up lessens your ability to control the ball and increases the chances that it will be stolen.

Make sure that you can see clearly. Your eyesight will affect more than just making shots. Great peripheral vision is an asset. If you scan the entire court instead of keeping your eye on the basketball, you will be aware of oncoming defensive pressure as well as the positions of your open teammates.

TIP! One way to increase your three-point skill is to practice at the NBA range. High school lines, international standard lines, and college lines are much closer.

It should be clear to you now what you can do to get more into basketball. It is not a complicated game and a great form of exercise. After you get going, you are sure to start playing more often than ever before. Hit the court and enjoy yourself!