TIP! Learn what a crossover is and how to do it. This is when you switch hands while dribbling.

Basketball season is always an obsession for the fans of the game, and the players themselves. In order to keep fans happy, give them a reason to cheer. Every member of a basketball team has strengths and weaknesses, so take stock of your skill and determine what you need to practice. Follow these tips to learn how to play basketball effectively and become an important member of your team.

TIP! Every great player understands how to properly perform a bounce pass. If done correctly, a well-executed bounce pass will reach the player in a way that allows them to move immediately with the ball.

Dribble while your head is up and your eyes are forward. If you need to look at the ball while dribbling, you’ll need to practice more. Bring your ball along when you go out. Dribble the ball as you go about your day doing errands like walking the dog. You will not be able to see what’s happening before you on the court while beholding the ball.

TIP! Frequent pass catching practice is important. Make sure you get used to catching less than perfect passes smoothly.

A bounce pass is essential to learn. It needs to get to the player at their waist. One good rule of thumb is to bounce the ball around three quarters of the way to the other player. Many other factors will affect it, too.

TIP! Make use of hand signals so that wild passes can be avoided. Often in basketball, a player makes a pass at the exact same time the receiving player heads to another part of the court.

Practice playing a man-to-man defense and zone defense. Always try to anticipate when your opponent is going to switch up their game to catch you off guard. If you haven’t practiced against it, you could end up losing your grip on the game quite quickly.

TIP! As you perform your fitness routine, make it a point to target your core and your footwork. Your body will maintain balance and move more quickly when your core muscles are strong.

A great way to learn how to pass is by doing drills often with no dribbling. It is difficult playing without dribbling; however, it helps the team make better passes. Don’t be frustrated by how hard it is at first; you will get used to it.

TIP! Quickness is something that’s desired in basketball. You’ll have an advantage if you’re faster than an opponent.

If you’re posting up, good footwork is the key to getting open and getting a good shot. You must be certain to get the good spot ahead of your opponent. Once there, you have to firmly claim the area as your own. Strong footwork is key.

TIP! Always be aware of the locations of your feet and what they’re doing. If you slide onto the baseline, you will lose the ball for being out of bounds.

If you’re looking to be the best defensive player that you can be, you’ll want to know your opponent. Watch replays and follow scouting reports. Remember which player shoots left and which shoots right. When you know more about the opposing team, you will play a better defense. Strong defenders are knowledgeable defenders.

TIP! You must have a consistent practice routine if you want to learn to shoot free throws well. Your shot could be off if you are inconsistent.

You need to mess with your opponent’s head. Force them into an uncomfortable zone. When making a move, be aggressive. Never let them control the game plays. If you do, your opponent will run all over you. Force them to act and their rhythm will get disrupted.

TIP! Your forearms and hands should be strengthened if you wish to handle the ball better. For example, you can improve dribbling skills by adding wrist curls to your routine.

Perform drills in which you move the ball up the court in just five dribbles. This may seem quite difficult at first, but once you’ve gotten the hang of it, you’ll have great speed and stride length. It can mean easier lay-ups when dealing with fast breaks and it can help your teammates for just a moment.

TIP! A great drill to try is to see how many dribbles it takes for you to make it across the court. The ideal number of dribbles is five.

Don’t leave your defensive stance. Use your opposite foot to push with or slide your feet around. Remember to never let your feet cross and you will be a difficult player to get around.

TIP! Playing basketball well means developing good court “eyesight.” You don’t just want to be able to pass and shoot well.

It can help your basketball skills when you strength train. Stamina and strength are two things you need to do well in this sport. Even kids can benefit by getting stronger through exercise. As they get older you can use weights to help enhance their performance. Adult players must use strength training to prevent loss of mobility, speed, and power.

TIP! You need to take charge when the opportunity presents itself. 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.

Here is how you can change a normal two-three zone to become a trapping machine. You will need for the top two guards to wait until the time when the point guard is approximately 10 feet beyond the midcourt. They should then trap the point guard. As your guards are doing this, send your forwards out to the outside opponents. Your forwards should easily be able to steal the pass that the point guard throws.

TIP! Have two of your guards wait for the point guard to go past midcourt for the best results. After he crosses the midcourt line, they should run and trap him.

Make sure you don’t pick up your dribble unless you are prepared for a shot or pass. When you cease dribbling, you’re really limiting your options. If you don’t shoot or pass, you are going to be pivoting with your back foot. This will leave you open for double teaming from opponents and you may lose control of the ball.

TIP! To increase the strength of your weaker hand, utilize it for doing everything, including brushing your teeth and opening jars. Try becoming ambidextrous outside of the court, and you will soon find that you do not have a weaker hand when playing basketball.

Switch your body’s weight from side to side while practicing your dribbling. Remember that you must dribble in a variety of situations during a basketball game. You’ll have people guarding you on all sides. You must dribble while you make your body lean in various directions. Dribbling can help get you out of trouble.

TIP! Always set your three-point shooting practice goal at the official NBA distance. All the other three point lines are much closer than the NBA line.

There are many ways you can improve your basketball game. Increasing your skills will also build your team’s success. There is a part for everyone in basketball, from the players on the court to the fans in the stands. Help your team by playing your position and looking for turnover opportunities. Remember these tips to become that player that is wanted on all teams.