Basketball has really taken off in popularity. Whether is it the watching the championships, playing on a team of your own or just shooting hoops in your own yard, basketball is definitely here to stay. Most players are in it to win it. The following tips will help you become an even better player.

Practice your layup shot often. Layups comprise approximately 80 percent of all shots. When you practice, be sure to run at the goal with full speed, jumping and shooting in a smooth series of motions. Knowing how to run and jump quickly and smoothly will assist you in knowing how to leap and shoot more effectively while playing.

TIP! When learning the game of basketball, it’s easy to get caught up in offensive play. But you should also give plenty of attention to defense.

A bounce pass is an important technique to learn. A useful bounce pass will hit the receiving player at waist level. Aim for a firm bounce pass that hits the ground around 3/4 of the distance between you and the intended player. There are, however, other factors that influence the pass.

Be sure to watch professional games to learn some great tips and tricks to improve your game. Go to actual games or watch on TV. Each player has their strengths and you can learn a lot from each one.

You never want to have your back to the ball if you can help it. You must always be prepared to receive a pass and you need to know where players are on the court. Scan the court looking for openings to make a basket.

TIP! A great way to hone your own basketball abilities is to watch the pros. Watch as many games on TV as you can.

Make sure your fingers are apart from one another when dribbling. This keeps it under control. Don’t allow yourself to have your palm touching the ball either. You should only use your fingers to touch the ball when passing or shooting.

You can play a great defensive game if you know the opposition well. Watch tapes of their games and see how others move on the court. One simple thing to know before the game is if your opponent shoots with their right or left hand. Knowing your opponent well helps you be much more effective. A smart defensive player is a strong one.

Focus on your footwork and your core strength in your workouts. Your body will be more stable and easier to move when you have strength in your core muscles. Give your hips, buttocks, back and stomach a workout. Jump rope like a boxer to improve your fancy footwork.

TIP! Frequently train yourself on your pass catching moves. Make sure you get used to catching less than perfect passes smoothly.

Develop a routine to use every time you shoot a free throw. Focus on your shot and eliminate all outside distractions. As long as this is a quick set of movements and it’s consistent, you won’t have any trouble having your body memorize what you’re doing.

If you wish to shoot free throws better, you have to have a routine that’s consistent. Inconsistency does not make a better shot. In order to make your free throw perfect, you’ll need to practice the shot many times and get into a routine. You’ll miss if you don’t have a good routine down.

You can prevent other players from stealing the ball from you by dribbling hard. Dribbling fast allows you to keep better control of the ball and there is a slimmer chance of it being stolen from you. If you are being guarded closely, bring your dribbling to an end and pass the ball to another open team member.

Peripheral Vision

Practice noticing what is in your peripheral vision. This isn’t just for reading the scoreboard. Your peripheral vision should be at its best. By seeing the court well, you can anticipate defensive moves as well as what all your teammates are doing. Good vision is vital to basketball success.

Changing your pace is key to keeping the offense on their toes. As you are heading towards the net, straighten up and plant down your foot. Your opponent will assume you are slowing up, and thus will also straighten up. When they do, try pushing forward hard and running right past them.

TIP! Want to make the other team not know what’s going on? Try doing what is known as a back pass. Use your dominant hand to palm the basketball.

Use the NBA three point line when practicing your shots. The standard line , high school and college lines are all going to be closer. If you can score from NBA range, you’ll enjoy open looks at deeper range than your opposition.

Keep on dribbling until your shot or passing opportunity is imminent. After dribbling is stopped, your choices are very limited. Basically the only move you have at this point is to pivot while finding an opening to move the ball. This will leave you open for double teaming from opponents and you may lose control of the ball.

When rebounding, hit the floor with your legs wide apart. Make sure that your hands are on both sides of the basketball, and that you hold it close to your chest. Don’t let your elbows poke another player or you will gain a foul.

TIP! Try using hand signals to ensure that your passes are received. Often in basketball, a player makes a pass at the exact same time the receiving player heads to another part of the court.

Bettering your game can be done in many ways. Some techniques are easy to learn through practice. Practice is essential to learning anything, so be sure you have the access you need to a hoop, and play as much as you can. No matter if you’re practicing with a group of friends or your team, the more chances you get to perfect your skills, the better you become as a player.