Learning the basics of basketball is quite easy. It does not take too long to come to grips with the basics. There will always be more to learn when you want be good at playing basketball, and the tips that follow will be helpful place to get you started.

Paying Attention

TIP! Dribble the ball the right way. Don’t use your palm to dribble, but use your fingertips instead.

When dribbling, make sure you hold your head high and look straight ahead. If you have to keep your eye on the ball when you’re dribbling, practice can remedy that. Bring the ball no matter where you go. Dribble as you walk to the market. Paying attention to the ball means you’re not paying attention to the rest of the game.

Focus on your strong point to help you become a better ball player. Your skills might not make you an all-start every time out, but playing up your strengths makes you a great contributor. Figure out what you do well at and then you can practice that until you perfect it.

If you become injured when playing basketball, stop immediately. Basketball is physically challenging, and injuries are not uncommon. Trying to play through the pain could just cause more damage. If it is a serious injury, see a doctor.

TIP! Crossovers are key for ball handlers. A crossover happens when you switch hands the ball is in.

Knowing your opponent is the best way to play a tough defensive game. Make sure that you’ve watched tapes that show the other player. You can also check out scouting reports. Figure out which people are right or left handed. Defense is more effective when you know what your opponent is likely to do. A knowledgeable defender is a strong defender.

Focus on your footwork and core strength when working out. Your body is going to be more balanced and be able to move faster when you have strong core muscles. Exercise your abdominal muscles as well as those of the hips, buttocks and back. Practicing with a jump rope is a great way to increase your foot speed.

Pay attention closely to the shoulders if you’re starting to slump when you shoot. When your shoulders are not properly positioned, then it is almost impossible to perform at your best. Make sure your shoulders are always square towards the hoop. Try to line your dominant shoulder up with the rim.

TIP! Free throws are as much mental as they are physical. With everyone watching, it can be easy to allow the pressure to interfere with your game.

Basketball players must be fast. Speed always gives you an edge over your opponent. Steady drilling is the key to playing fast. Never try though to get too fast that you can’t make any plays. This can cause you to get out of control and make careless mistakes.

To dribble the ball better, it is important that you practice dribbling with the hand that’s weaker. When you are ambidextrous, you’ll be a better player. Make an effort to dribble with your weak hand by keeping your dominant hand away from the front. You will get new dribbling skills with your weak hand.

Perform drills in which you move the ball up the court in just five dribbles. This might not seem possible, but if you can do it your speed and length will strengthen. It will allow you to execute easy layups.

TIP! Do not practice solely against zone defense. Most of the game is played in zone, but your opponent may try to switch things up to do man-to-man coverage.

Maybe you are now able to learn to play basketball after reading this. You may have played the game ever since you were young. Either way, you can benefit from the information contained within this article. Use these tips when you are ready to play again.