A great knowledge base can help you with anything you do. From changing a tire to playing basketball, you have to understand the situation to do it right. When it comes to the latter, there is nothing better than reading the tips you will find below and then using them yourself.
Make your passes quick and precise. This takes practice, but you can improve your passing skills over time. Find someone else who wants to improve their passing and run drills with them. Running up and down the court passing and dribbling will eventually become second nature and help you with your game.
Always protect the ball when you are in possession of it. Keep your dribble off to the side of your body to make it more difficult for another player to steal the ball. While you generally want to avoid dribbling in front of you, you can do so if there are no other players in your immediate vicinity.
Practicing with your team is important, but don’t overlook the value of daily practice on your own. Set up a daily practice time for yourself and stick to your schedule. Practice footwork, shooting, and dribbling. It is also important to include strength training and endurance training in your practice schedule.
Shake things up rather than focusing solely on a zone defense. While a great portion of a game will be concentrated in the zone, your rivals could opt to go to man-to-man covering to keep you guessing. You might lose your control of the court if the other team use this technique, unless you are ready for this possibility.
Jump on the ground and dive for those loose balls. Don’t be afraid to hit the ground hard and get a little hustle on. Not only will this help the team, but the coach will surely notice your improved effort. Team moral is always a good thing to keep in high numbers.
Keeping calm and reacting maturely to getting beat is as important to your game as anything else. If your opponent has played harder and has out-hustled you, don’t get upset or stressed out, as your game will only suffer. Instead, think about how to match the intensity of your opponent. Beat them at their own game.
Good shooters rely on the perimeter shot, so practice getting open to get these key shots. A good play to run is having a post player work the ball down low and then pass it back out once the defense collapses. Run a drill during practice where the only shots you take are those from passes coming from inside the paint.
Use two hands when trying to make shots. Have both thumbs on the ball so that they are almost touching. Put the ball over your head but be sure you are able to see what you are aiming for. When you shoot, aim for the backboard or give it a backspin by rolling your hands down while shooting.
Good rebounding is a key aspect of a success basketball player, so practice rebounds and jumping. Many easy baskets come from the second, third or even fourth shot taken. Practice getting your own rebounds. It is very common for a ball to hit off the rim and head right back towards you.
To get a good workout at practice, dribble back and forth on the court. Start by running to the free throw line, then go back to the end of the court. Then dribble to the middle and then go back, then to the far free throw line and then go back again, and then the entire length of the court.
When dribbling, try to make your moves below your knee joints. This will mean you have to bend over to dribble the ball and move, but there are advantages. It creates a little more personal space, making the ball harder for an opponent to steal. It also makes it far easier to shake off an opponent for a drive, a shot or a pass.
It is important that you learn to dribble the ball without staring at your hand as you do it. If your eyes are always on the ball, you can’t see who is around you. That will leave you open to having the ball stolen by a defender when you are least expecting it.
Holding the ball correctly means using just your fingers, and that requires great hand strength. To build this, hold the ball in your right hand and squeeze your fingers together until it flies out and over to your left hand. Repeat on the other side, and continue until your fingers become tired.
While you should always make your passes as simple as possible, some situations call for more complicated passes. If you have to make a behind-the-back pass, your power is coming from your arm and fingers. If you use the power from your shoulders, you opponent will realize what your are doing and may be quick enough to break up the pass.
Use the hand you are not dribbling with to keep your defender away from the ball. Never push your opponent away because that ends up in a foul, but lightly use your other hand to keep separation between the ball and your opponent. Keep it up a little bit while you dribble.
To be sure that you are not withdrawing your hand too quickly when you take a shot, leave it up after the ball has left your hand for two seconds. If you pull your hand back too early, you can under power your shot or cause the ball to go off target.
Learning to lose gracefully is part of the game. Nobody enjoys being with a player who responds in an ugly manner to not winning. That means no tantrums or outburst or blaming others for mistakes they made. Know that everyone tried their best and that each game you lose still teaches you something valuable.
Now that you know what it takes to better your game, start using these ideas as you play basketball. As you become a great player, you will be pleased that you took the time to read this article. With every win, you will feel great accomplishment, pride and a sense of joy.