Many people enjoy watching basketball and supporting their favorite team. Professional players must work to give their fans something to cheer for. Since everyone on the team contributes, it’s important to improve your skills. These tips help you be on a winning team.

It is important to focus on both offense and defense when learning to play basketball. Basketball games are won with a good defense. The offense gets lots of attention, but if the defense is lacking no basketball team will ever win a game.

TIP! Improving your balance means improving your shots. Everyone has watched a pro player drift out of bounds while still making their shot, but this isn’t something to emulate.

If you want to excel, you have to play to your strengths. Your team will benefit more if you stop trying to be the star of the game and work your best. Perfect what you can do well by practicing and developing the strengths you already have.

You can learn how to better pass the ball if you run drills without the dribble. It is difficult playing without dribbling; however, it helps the team make better passes. Try not to lose yourself in frustration if you do not master it immediately, with the more time that passes with you and your team practicing, the more accurate they will become.

Playing basketball does not require excessive muscle development. Muscle is good, but you can have too much. Some professional shooting guards made their arms so big that it started decreasing their field goal percentage.

TIP! Keep your eye on the ball. This provides court awareness and prevents you from unexpected turnovers or quick passes.

In order to get a good shot, you must use good footwork. While actually being beneath the basket is key, establishing a good position prior to the opposition is even more so. Once you’ve reached a good spot, you need to secure it. Strong footwork skills help to build both types of skills.

Have someone taper your games and then watch it to see how you look on the court. Do you see how you could’ve handled a situation differently? Look at how you did and judge yourself. At times, it can help to see the truth of who you are, not as you imagine yourself.

A great drill to try is to see how many dribbles it takes for you to make it across the court. The ideal number of dribbles is five. This may not seem feasible, but once you master it, your speed and stride will be truly impressive. This is a vital skill to give you points on fast break opportunities.

Strength Training

If you want to do well in basketball, you need to build your strength. In addition, stamina is important to the game, too. Even younger kids will benefit from strength training. As they get older you can use weights to help enhance their performance. Adult players must use strength training to prevent loss of mobility, speed, and power.

Increase your weak hand’s capabilities by using it for everything you normally would not. If you’re able to do more with your other hand daily, you can start controlling it better. Keeping your opponents on their toes is an important part of basketball.

TIP! Use the foot opposite of the hand you shoot with for a better layup. So, your left foot should be the one you take off from if you use your right hand to shoot.

Keep your knees loose when you dribble the ball. If you are standing up straight, you will have more difficulty controlling the ball. You only need to bend your knees slightly to improve your control of the basketball.

To better three-point shooting, try using NBA distance as the minimum. All the other three point lines are much closer than the NBA line. You are less likely to be guarded, the farther you are from the basket.

Practice Dribbling

TIP! A consistent routine will help you to achieve great free throws. If you aren’t consistent, you won’t make the basket.

Practice dribbling while you switch your body’s momentum from one side to the other. This will have you ready for a game, when you will need to move any direction on a moment’s notice. It would be great if you are always able to go full speed ahead, but more times than not you will need to move and flow with the defense in front of you. Practice dribbling while leaning in many different directions. This allows you to get yourself out of a tough spot.

If the person you’re guarding is bigger than you are, put your body between this person and the player with the ball. This prevents them from becoming open for passes and makes sure that they do not get the ball, which they would be have the ability to shoot over you.

If you are in possession of the ball, learn when you should shoot and when you should pass. Instead of hogging the ball and losing the game when you fail to make the shot, be a team player and pass it off to the player who has the better chance to make the winning shot.

TIP! A good defensive strategy will keep your opponent on their toes. Force them out of their comfort zone.

Always keep an eye on the basketball, whether it’s under control of your teammate or your opponent. An important part of basketball is rebounding. If you can’t get the ball in your possession, it doesn’t matter how many times your opponent shoots and misses.

There are many ways to fine tune your skills. Better players make better teams. Just a little knowledge can go a long way. By being a player you should be giving your team lots of help. Make it a priority to become the kind of teammate you would want to have.