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Basketball is a game that many people love to play. You can play this game in your driveway or at a local park. If you are an aspiring basketball players, it would be a good idea to read this article to learn some new skills.

The way to properly dribble is to keep your head up while looking ahead of you. If you are looking at the ball for any reason while dribbling, you have not put in enough practice. Take you ball with you everywhere. Dribble as you walk down the street. Maintaining unbroken visual contact with the ball makes it difficult to be aware of your surroundings.

TIP! Make sure you are dribbling the right way. When you dribble, use the fingertips, not the palm.

If you hold the ball a lot, you have to learn crossovers. A crossover is when you move the ball from one hand to the other. That action has to be done fast to be successful. Once you master the art of the crossover dribble, you will be able to change directions quicker.

You must have good balance to shoot well. Everyone has seen professional basketball players make a shot from 20 feet away as they are falling. They improvise to do that. You need to maintain good balance while shooting, which is sure to produce greater consistency.

Frequently train yourself on your pass catching moves. During practice you should come up with drills where you perfect catching bad passes along with the good ones. During a real game, many of the passes that come your way will be off-target and tougher to handle. Learning how to catch these errant passes will put you at an advantage.

TIP! Always keep your head up when dribbling instead of focusing on the ball. If you must look at the ball while dribbling, you haven’t practiced enough.

Don’t dribble during your drills. It is tough to play when not dribbling, but your accuracy is sure to inprove. Don’t be frustrated by how hard it is at first; you will get used to it.

Don’t pump too much iron if you plan on being a jump shooter. Muscle is good, but you can have too much. Some overzealous shooting guards buffed up too much, and it had an adverse effect on their overall field goal percentages.

Interested in tricking your opponents? Try using a back pass! Use the dominant hand whenever trying a behind the back pass. Then, move the basketball around your rear. Finally, flick your wrist towards the direction in which you wish that ball to travel. This should help to trick the other team.

TIP! Hitting free throws is a mental challenge as well as a physical one. Without a strong mindset, your body simply goes through the motions to take the shot.

Hand signals can help stop you from turning the ball over. It’s frustrating to pass to your teammate at the very moment they’re heading toward the basket. The use of hand signals can help you avoid this difficulty. No signal, no pass.

A smart tip to follow while playing basketball is to always keep your eye on the ball and not away from the play. You have to be aware of what is going on with the ball at all times. Be vigilant to detect openings or weaknesses that make it easier to take the shot.

To properly handle the ball, you have to spread your fingers out. You will have better luck holding onto the ball as well. Keep your palm off the ball too. Whether you are passing or shooting the ball, your fingers are the only part of your hand that should be touching the ball.

Jumping Rope

Focus on your footwork and your core strength in your workouts. When you have strong core muscles, your body will be better balanced and will move faster. Concentrate your efforts on the back, abdomen, buttocks and hips. Jumping rope is a favorite amongst professionals when practicing. By jumping rope, you improve speed and footwork.

Have your games taped so you can play them back later and observe your court presence. Do you see anything you could do differently? When looking at the tape, don’t be too critical, but be honest. Sometimes you think of yourself as something you are not.

TIP! You may have better luck honing your passing skills if you forgo dribbling during practice. It is hard to play basketball without dribbling, and demands accurate passing and teamwork, so it will be a challenge.

Take charges whenever possible. A charge can help you take the ball and perhaps set up a foul against the other team. Perfecting this play can really give you an advantage on the court.

Strength training can be a major help in basketball. In addition, stamina is important to the game, too. Young children that play can even benefit from strengthening arms and legs through proper exercise. As the teenage years approach, weights can be used for even greater impact. Then they will be ready to really learn the skills that really make an excellent player.

You should make sure when practicing dribbling that you shift from one hand to the other. You’re going to be dribbling in many different conditions during a game. Perhaps you will have open court; however, you might have bunches of opposing team members all around you. You must know how to dribble effectively by leaning your body in both directions. It will help you when you need it most.

TIP! You can play basketball solo before and during the season. Basketball is sport played in teams, but there are times when no one is around to play with you.

Exercise off the court. Sprinting will help you develop speed, while running long distances will help you develop great stamina. Lift weights to build your power. The confidence and adrenaline that builds don’t hurt either.

Do not double dribble. That happens when you stop one time, and start again in a few seconds. If you have already ceased dribbling, your only options are to pass or shoot the basketball. Resuming your dribble is not allowed. Double dribbling means your team turns the ball over to the other team.

No matter whether you want to play some casual basketball or play in a more organized way, you’ll benefit by improving your skills. If you are going to invest the time into reading this article, you surely want to put your new knowledge into action. As you learn more, you’ll start to play better.