Basketball is more than just an activity you run around in during gym class. You can play it at home, or at the local recreation center. If you are an aspiring basketball players, it would be a good idea to read this article to learn some new skills.

You need to learn the correct way to dribble the ball. Don’t use your palm to dribble, but use your fingertips instead. This provides you with much more ball control. Bounce only at the level of your waist at the side and not in front. Always look up and never look down at the ground.

TIP! Practice your defense more than your offense. Many times, defense actually wins the game.

Knowing how to perform a crossover is a must when you handle the basketball frequently. Switch from one side to the other while dribbling. That action has to be done fast to be successful. When done correctly, a good crossover dribble assists you in being efficient and helping you change direction when you need to.

Improving your balance means improving your shots. While some NBA players are able to launch a ball to the net mid-fall, this is not appropriate for most people. This is simply an improvised move. Good balance while shooting will lead to landing more baskets.

Free throws are as much mental as they are physical, like other parts of the game. You must train both your body and your mind. Relax and focus on the net, and you’ll be able to make more.

TIP! Make sure you are dribbling the right way. You’ll want to use your fingertips to dribble instead of using your palm.

Watch the pro’s play if you want to improve your game. You can do this by watching games in person and on television. Every player has skills that make them good, and you can work on the skills they use.

Keep your skills sharp in the off-season by playing different challenging games. Though basketball is surely a team sport, there may be times when you have nobody to play against. This is just fine. You can still get a lot accomplished with solo games. Whether focusing on foul shots or how to pivot with the ball, you can look for ways to improve. There is no shortage of things you can do.

Talk to your teammates and find out what they like about your game. Do you do something really good? It may be that you are quick on your feet or that you are always there to back them up. Develop your strengths even further and look for ways to improve your weaknesses.

TIP! Learn how a bounce pass is thrown. If done properly, the pass will land near waist level with the opposite player.

Always be aware of your feet. You want to make sure you don’t step over the bounds by even a teeny bit. If you travel without dribbling, you’re going to get yourself into a turnover situation. Also, when you’re moving your feet when a screen is being set, you can take a charge or pick to try and get a foul.

Practice looking the other way when passing. You can really confuse your opponents this way. When you do it right, the opponents are going to think you’re moving in one direction. That way, the person you’ve given the ball to has a bit of time to look at the net to taking a shot. It really can be a powerful technique.

Use the foot opposite of the hand you shoot with for a better layup. If you use your right hand to shoot, use your left foot to take off. This way you keep your body away from defenders, your momentum going in the direction of the basket and your body stays balanced.

TIP! Work on pass catches. Be sure to be able to catch off-target throws on top of good ones.

In order to be good at rebounding the ball off a missed free throw, you must be quick with your feet. Be aware that the defender who is below you will start moving in your direction. Slip past him, and you can get the ball. Now you can achieve a proper rebound and not commit a foul.

Whether you enjoy the occasional casual game or compete in local tournaments, improving your skills on the court can help you get more out of the game. Now that you’ve read this article, go out there and put it to use. Knowledge is strength in every venue, including basketball.