Do you love basketball so much that you want to be as great as Shaquille O’Neil? Instead of just aspiring to be a great, why not continue to learn more techniques and strategies that can help you out. Keep reading to learn more.

Make it a point to concentrate on both your defensive and offensive skills. Focusing only on offense does not make you a well-rounded player. Defense is what stands between you and a win. Offense receives all the glory, but it is nothing without the best defense.

TIP! If you hold the ball a lot, you have to learn crossovers. This technique passes the ball back and forth from the right hand to the left hand.

Start out with proper balance before attempting to take a shot. Even though a professional can hit all sorts of crazy off-balance shots, it is not the ideal method of shooting that you want to learn. They are merely making up the play on the spot. If you are able to improve your sense of balance, then you will find that your percentage of successful shots improves.

Make sure you spend your time focusing on your strengths. If you can rely on your strengths, you will become a better player. Understand your strengths and use it to your advantage to help your team win!

If you want to be a jump shooter, avoid pumping iron excessively. Although it’s true that strong muscles are beneficial, additional bulk can impede your ability to play effectively along the perimeter. As a shooting guard, having bulky arm muscles can actually reduce the number of successful shots.

TIP! Focus on your strengths to get better at basketball. The best talent you have isn’t going to have you starring in every highlight reel, but having a good skill set can benefit your team.

Bad passes can be avoided with the right hand signals. Passing is tough, especially if you and your teammate are not in sync with one another. This can be prevented through the use of hand signals. If you don’t see a signal, you shouldn’t pass the ball.

If you are posting up, strategic footwork is important to becoming open and making a good shot. You do, of course, need to be near the basket, but finding the right spot without getting blocked is essential. If you are just stepping into position, you now have to secure the spot. These skills require solid footwork.

Don’t play when you are injured! Basketball is physically demanding, and injuries are relatively common. Trying to be tough so you can keep going, even when you’re just a little uncomfortable, can make an injury worse. Be sure to seek medical care if you have a serious injury.

TIP! You have to know how to bounce pass properly. If done correctly, a well-executed bounce pass will reach the player in a way that allows them to move immediately with the ball.

Ask your teammates what they like about how you play. Find out what they perceive as your best skill. Perhaps they see you as someone who is fast on the court, or that you’re a really good teammate. Determine what others like about your game and fine tune those skills.

To properly handle the ball, you have to spread your fingers out. The ball will not get away if you always keep your fingers spread when handling the ball. Keep your palm off the ball too. When you’re shooting or passing, the only place the ball should touch your hand is on your fingers.

Ask someone to take a video of you playing and watch it. Are you able to see what you’ve missed or things that you could improve on? Do not waste time criticizing yourself. Just make an honest assessment. You can learn a lot by watching your plays instead of just trying to remember what you did.

TIP! Watching the pros play is a great way to see how great basketball players use their skills in the game. Watch professionals play or go check out talented local teams to see who has the moves that you want to learn.

Practice passing while looking in the opposite direction. This should befuddle your opponent. When done properly, this technique distracts the opposition and gives your pass recipient a chance to focus on the basket. This can be a great play if it is done correctly.

To make your layups count the most, take off from the foot opposite your shooting hand. Use your left foot when shooting with the right hand. This way you keep your body away from defenders, your momentum going in the direction of the basket and your body stays balanced.

Upset and disrupt your opponent’s play. All successful basketball players do this. Force them into an uncomfortable zone. The more aggressive you are the better. Other players should not influence the plays you make. If you let them, you’ll be at their mercy. Rather, you make the initial move and break up their flow.

TIP! Bad passes can be avoided with the right hand signals. It can be frustrating to attempt to pass the ball to a team mate as that person is heading toward the basket.

Alter your pace to confuse the opposition. As you approach the goal, plant your foot and then straighten up. This will cause the guard to believe you are slowing, and it will also cause them to straighten up. When they do this, push yourself forward and take the chance to run by them.

When dribbling you want to keep your knees bent. If your knees are not bent, the basketball will be more difficult to control. Bending your knees slightly can really make a difference in the way you control the ball.

To make your shooting skills better, shoot from all around the court. Practice dribbling and quick shots. Avoid looking at the basketball goal while dribbling the ball. This way, you will be ready for the rapid pace of game play.

TIP! Don’t let the ball go behind your back. This keeps you aware of what is going on so you aren’t surprised.

Now that you have perused this piece, you ought to have some great ideas on how to move forward. Practice hard and with consistency. Over time, the work you put in will translate to confidence on the court. Keep these tips in mind as you impress on the court.