TIP! Learn proper dribbling. You’ll want to use your fingertips to dribble instead of using your palm.

One of the most popular games on earth is basketball. From playing a friendly game of hoops in the backyard with friends, to watching professionals on the big stage, the sport of basketball has come a very long way. If you enjoy playing the game, no doubt you want to show your best on the court at all times. The following tips will help you take your interest in basketball to a whole new level.

TIP! Figure out how to perfect your free throw. This is one of those shots that seem easy but in real life are difficult.

A lot of novice players mostly focus on their offensive skills, but developing good defensive skills will help you become a better player. Defense is how you win a basketball game. While everyone focuses on shots made, a good defense can kill the chances of even an amazing shot taker.

TIP! Focus on your strengths to get better at basketball. 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.

Make sure to dribble properly. You want to dribble with the tips of your fingers, not your whole hand. Using your fingertips provides you with more control. Keep the ball by your side as you dribble instead of right in front your body. Keep your eyes up, not on the ground.

Free Throw Shot

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

Practice your free throw shot. The free throw shot might seem simple, but it can actually be pretty difficult. Put this technique into practice as often as you can. Start with the ball held out from your face. Maintain focus on the basket and try to visualize your basketball falling through the hoop. Shoot on the same path you saw in your mind’s eye.

TIP! Never try to push through pain after an injury. You can easily tear a muscle or even break a finger while playing.

Pay attention to what you are good at. Even though your best abilities might not make you stand out each game, it is sure to help you contribute to the overall success of the team. Understand where you excel, and work on those talents until they are perfected.

TIP! During your workouts, concentrate on improving your footwork as well as your core strength. Your body will be more stable and easier to move when you have strength in your core muscles.

Teach yourself to throw bounce passes correctly. A bounce pass that’s good is going to end up hitting the other player near their waist. Bounce it 3/4 of the distance to the receiver. There are other factors you have to think about too, however.

TIP! Watch tapes of yourself playing basketball to get a more objective perspective. Do you see anything you could do differently? Don’t get yourself down about your performance, but stay honest with yourself concerning where your game needs some work.

Making a free throw takes mental concentration as well as physical prowess. Training your body is important, but you also have to be mentally ready for the shot. Take a deep breathe, relax and block out all outside distractions before taking the shot.

TIP! A solid routine is necessary for improvement in free throw shooting. Inconsistent shooting will lead to inconsistent results.

Avoid errant passes by the use of hand signals. Oftentimes frustration occurs when trying you aren’t on the same page with a teammate who cuts to the basketball when you try to pass him the ball. Using signals helps communicate passes with your team. No signal, no pass.

Serious Injury

TIP! Take a charge if you can. By taking charge you can create a defensive stop so you can get the ball, and allows you to create setups so that the opponent will foul you.

Never play through an injury on the court. This is a physically challenging game, so you may end up hurt much worse. Pushing through the pain often results in a more serious injury. Anytime you have a serious injury, you should seek medical attention.

TIP! If you want to put pressure on the offense, you need to change the pace of things. You can try faking a jump shot by planting quickly, and straightening your body.

If the opposing team is breathing down your neck, it’s a good idea to pass the ball between your legs. Try practicing this by bouncing your ball hard in between your legs while stepping forward or backward. When you get this move down, you will have an advantage.

TIP! Use wrist curls to increase the strength in your weaker arm. If you gain more mastery of it in all walks of life, you improve overall control.

A good defensive strategy will keep your opponent on their toes. Don’t let them get comfortable. The more aggressive you are the better. Don’t let them choose what plays to make. If they do, they’ll dominate you. You make the moves, which helps shift the momentum.

TIP! If you want to play better, communicate with your teammates so you know what they intend to do. In order to win games, you have to work together as a team.

Good footwork can really help you to get those rebounds. Use your feet to slip around the opposing player below you, then get into position for a rebound off the rim. This allows you to grab the rebound legally.

TIP! If a shooter is located at a corner, their missed attempt is likely to waft to the opposite side. If this is the case, you need to guess where it will end up and catch the rebound as a result.

Dribble hard if you don’t want the ball taken from you. The ball will get back to the hand faster, giving the other team less of an opportunity to grab it away. If you have somebody guarding you very closely, pass the ball to an open teammate.

Strength Training

TIP! If you’re trying to guard a person that’s bigger than you are, try keeping between that person and the one in possession of the ball. That way, they will never be open to receive a pass, and they will not be able to make an easy shot over your head.

To increase your basketball playing abilities, consider strength training exercises. It is impossible to succeed if you lack endurance and strength. Younger kids can benefit from boosting their arm and leg strength with proper exercise. As they become adolescents, let them start using weights for added benefits. As adults, it will be imperative to maintain a strength training routine.

TIP! Practice your pivoting skills to improve your performance on the court. It is necessary to refine your footwork so that you an pivot successfully on a moment’s notice.

As you can see, your game can be improved in many ways. It is important to understand the fundamentals of the game if you plan on being a great player. Practice makes perfect, and basketball is no exception. So get a hoop and start practicing whenever you can. Any kind of playing will be beneficial to your skill. Play for your love of the game. Don’t hesitate to go for a casual game with your friends or join in with the neighborhood kids.