The freedom, enjoyment and delight people derive from the game of basketball is not overrated. But, most people don’t have the knowledge it takes to excel at this sport. Keep reading to learn some great insights that everyone who plays basketball can use.

Practice your defense more than your offense. Defense is how you win a basketball game. Offense is often what gets the glory, but most winning basketball teams play great defense.

Paying Attention

When dribbling, your head must be up, and you need to look forward. Looking at your ball when you dribble indicates that you haven’t practiced enough. Wherever you go, take your ball with you. Dribble as you walk down the street. Paying attention to the ball means you’re not paying attention to the rest of the game.

Don’t pump a lot of iron if you wish to become a jump shooter. Muscle strength is great for any position in basketball, you can have too much when it comes to perimeter play. Overdeveloped muscles could actually interfere with your score percentage.

TIP! Making a free throw takes mental concentration as well as physical prowess. Training your body is important, but you also have to be mentally ready for the shot.

If you’re injured in a basketball game, don’t attempt to play while in pain. Basketball is hard to play well even when you are healthy, so don’t push it. If you keep playing when you are injured, you could end up with an injury which keeps you from ever playing again. If the pain is bad, visit a doctor.

When you work out, try focusing on building core strength and bettering your footwork. When you have strong core muscles, your body will be better balanced and will move faster. Give your hips, buttocks, back and stomach a workout. You will improve your speed and footwork if you jump rope like boxers do.

Speed is one of the best virtues when playing basketball. You’ll have an advantage if you’re faster than an opponent. Consistent, repetitive drilling is the key to speed. Though, you should never attempt to a play faster game than your abilities permit. It’s easy to lose control when you play fast.

TIP! You can play basketball solo before and during the season. Even if you can’t get a bunch of people together to play, you can still practice on your own.

Always be aware of where you have your feet and what you are going to do with them next. If you step on the baseline, you will be out of bounds. In addition, if you move your feet and you don’t dribble, you will be called for walking. If you move either foot while trying to pick, take a charge or set a screen, it will result in a called foul.

Free Throw

Do your free throw shooting the same way every time. For example, many people touch their foreheads or tap their chest before making a free throw shot. Keep it simple and consistent, and the routine will become a part of your muscle memory.

TIP! Have your team mates critique your playing skills. They will probably notice the things you do best.

Defensive players need to stay low. This will aid you as you jump and make it easier to react to the front man. Always maintain a defensive position during game play. When you have to break out of stance to block a shot, get back into form as quickly as possible.

A powerful play called the trapping machine, is to have your guards wait for the point guard to come just past midcourt. Then, they need to run at the point guard to trap him. Your forwards can sprint to block the player on both sides. The point guard will make a pass that forwards can steal.

While you’re dribbling the basketball it is wise to bend your knees. Standing straight will make you see that it’s harder to handle and easier for the opposing players to take. You only need to bend your knees slightly to improve your control of the basketball.

TIP! One great thing to do if you wish to be prepared while playing is to make sure your back isn’t turned to the ball. This can help you to avoid surprises by fast passes, help you keep an eye on the rest of the court, and allow you to spot potential turnovers.

If you wish to do better a shooting three pointers, you should do it from where NBA players shoot from. School and the international standard lines are nearer than that. If you can make a basket from there, you will open up the defense because they will have to play you closely.

Make sure you don’t pick up your dribble unless you are prepared for a shot or pass. The instant you stop the dribble, your options become limited. If you decide not to shoot a basket or pass the ball on, you are only allowed to pivot on the heal that is furthest back. This makes you open up to people that want to double team you and that means you are also more likely to get the ball stolen.

Basketball can be a great sport for play and for being a fan. But, to really ensure that you are getting everything basketball has to offer, it pays to get as informed on the topic as possible. We hope the article above has served as a key resource for you to accomplish just that.