Just about everyone has at least a rudimentary notion of what basketball is all about. However, many people are interested in taking their understanding of the sport to a whole new level. If you are among those wishing to learn more, this article can serve as a very useful resource going forward.
One of the most important skills when playing basketball is balance. Everyone has seen professional basketball players make a shot from 20 feet away as they are falling. This kind of improvisation is the result of years of practice and loads of ability. 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.
When learning to dribble, you need to learn to dribble with both hands. This is important because you may have to switch hands when dribbling during a game. Also, learn to dribble behind your back and between an opponent’s legs. This may seem silly, but you may actually use this technique.
Learn how to be patient and trust your teammates during games. Many players fall into the trap of not passing the ball and trying to do it all themselves. You need to trust them and pass the ball. This is a team sport and passing is part of what helps your team win games.
Bad passes can be avoided with the right hand signals. It can be frustrating passing to a teammate when you’re both heading to the basket. Avoid this using hand signals to see if they can get the pass. If they don’t signal, don’t pass to them.
Speed and agility is important, but you need to know how to practice to improve those skills. Running yourself ragged by training for long lengths of time or by running long distances won’t benefit your play on the court. Instead, practice sprints and other short bursts of exercise. This better mimics how on the court play really is.
When you have to shoot free throws in a basketball game, make sure that you clear your head before you shoot. Depending on your state of mind, free throw shots can either be your hardest or easiest shots. Try clearing your mind and concentrating on the shot. Many players find it useful to imagine the ball going into the hoop. These shots take skill and finesse so emotions like anger can negatively affect your focus and alertness.
If you wish to shoot free throws better, you have to have a routine that’s consistent. A routine that is constantly in flux will only open up more opportunities for failure. Practicing your free throw again and again is the only way to perfect it. If you break your routine, you’ll start missing shots.
To defend a person dribbling the ball, it is important to bring your arms up to the ball. When you reach for the ball, starting low means you hit the ball first and not the arm. Hitting the arm first means that you are going to foul — not end up with the ball.
Become a great athlete. There are few great basketball players out there who aren’t also superb athletes in general. This is a very athletic sport, so prepare for it by playing all sorts of athletic games. This can be running, swimming, cycling, you name it. All of these sports will add to your abilities on the court.
Being a good defensive player means disrupting the game of your opponent. Getting them to do things they aren’t accustomed to doing is ideal. The more aggressive you are the better. Which plays are made shouldn’t be up to them. This will give your opponent the chance to run over you. Rather, you make the initial move and break up their flow.
A chest pass is the most effective method of getting the ball from one player to another. This type of pass gives you plenty of strength and allows you to fully control where the ball goes. Using a chest pass is also the quickest way to pass the ball but only use it when there is no defender between you and your teammate.
Practice noticing what is in your peripheral vision. You will need it for more than checking the scoreboard or passing and shooting. Working to improve you peripheral vision will help you become a more successful player. Having good court awareness to see everything around you lets you see plays develop before they happen, either by warding off the defenders or getting the ball to open teammates.
Most people understand the sport of basketball on at least some level, but that is not to say that they are satisfied with their present level of knowledge. By learning as much as possible about basketball, one’s enjoyment of the sport can grow to a surprising degree. Hopefully this article has provided the basis for a long-lasting love affair with basketball.