TIP! While focusing on offense is fun, you must also make sure you focus on defense. You can win a game, thanks to good defense.

Basketball has really exploded in popularity and is now adored by millions all over the world. Understanding the nuances of the game helps you to appreciate it in its splendor. This article below can help with that.

TIP! You must become knowledgeable about hitting a free-throw shot. The execution of a free throw is not as simple as it may appear.

You need to keep your balance if you’re shooting. 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. Point your feet towards the basket, guide the ball with your weaker hand and push the ball away with your strong hand whenever you shoot the basketball.

TIP! If you want to excel, you have to play to your strengths. You can contribute to the team by consolidating your best skills, even if these skills do not make you one of the star players.

Be sure to get lots of practice on layups. Layups account for up to 80 percent of the shots taken during a game. When practicing this technique, run toward the goal and shoot. Practicing your running and jumping as a single motion will improve your technique faster than practicing them separately.

TIP! Free throws have a huge mental element to them. 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.

If you are good at shooting the ball then the last thing you want to do is lift weights. You do need muscle conditioning and strength, but you can have too much when it comes to shooting field goals. If your arms are too big, your field goal percentage will go down.

TIP! Watch the pro’s play if you want to improve your game. You can follow the pros in online videos, on TV and you can also attend a basketball game if there is a pro team in your area.

Keep your skills sharp in the off-season by playing different challenging games. Basketball is usually a team sport, but just because you can’t find others, doesn’t mean you have to just stop thinking about it. That is okay. It is possible to get a lot done even when playing alone. Practice free throws and work on pivot moves. You can always find things to practice.

TIP! Do not practice by playing against the zone defense. A lot of the game is sure to be played in the zone, but your opponent could change to man-to-man coverage.

If you’re on the offense, you footwork needs to be excellent to stay open for passes and shots. Although a strong presence in the key is important, beating your opponent to good spots on the floor is more important. After establishing good position, you need to make sure you hold it. Strong footwork is key.

TIP! A great way to stay prepared at all times is to always face the ball. It’s all about court awareness, and always facing the ball will make it so you are less surprised by passes.

Should you receive an injury during the course of the game, never try to continue playing despite the pain. It’s a challenging sport that’s very physical, and you have the ability to get injured. By “playing through the pain” you take a huge risk that the injury will become much worse. If you are seriously injured, obtain medical care.

TIP! When you are passing the ball, get used to looking in the other direction. This will easily confuse your opponents.

Always be aware of where you have your feet and what you are going to do with them next. Placing even a single toe atop the baseline while holding the ball will result in you being ruled out of bounds. You will get called for walking if you take extra steps and are not dribbling. Also, moving either foot when trying to set a screen, pick or take a charge results in a foul call.

Free Throw

TIP! Good footwork can really help you to get those rebounds. Slip around the defender moving your way and get the ball.

High percentage free throw shooters typically have the same free throw routine prior to each and every shot. Whatever you do, from bending your knees to dribbling three times, do every time. When you have a steady and consistent routine, your muscles will remember what to do to shoot those free throw shots.

TIP! Be sure that you’re able to see clearly. This will help you to secure the ball during the game.

No sport can compare to the excitement basketball fans experience. Without proper understanding, though, it is easy to get lost. Whether new to the game or an experienced observer looking for more information, the above guide should hopefully be helpful to a lifetime of basketball enjoyment.