Basketball is incredibly popular. Whether you’re watching the game or playing the game, basketball is widely loved. If you enjoy playing the game, no doubt you want to show your best on the court at all times. In this article, we will discuss excellent tips that will help you become the best player possible to help your team win.

If you have the ball a lot, learn to execute a crossover. Crossovers involve moving the ball from hand to hand. Crossovers must be done quickly to keep defenders at bay. When done properly, crossover dribbling is a great way to quickly switch direction or move around the court in an efficient manner.

TIP! Knowing how to perform a crossover is a must when you handle the basketball frequently. In a crossover, you transfer the basketball from hand to hand.

Improving your balance means improving your shots. You’ve seen the pros fall out-of-bounds and shoot a basket up to 300 feet away, however, this isn’t proper technique. Those who do this are improvising. You need to be balanced properly if you’re going to be making shots, so that over time you’ll be able to always hit the basket.

Teach yourself how a bounce pass can be properly thrown. Bounce passes should not go above or below the receiving players waist. A good estimation is to target the ball to bounce at about 3/4 of the distance that the receiving player is. Many other factors will affect it, too.

Free throws are as mental as physical. You must train both your body and your mind. Relax and focus on your shot, and you can make it.

TIP! Free throws are mental as well as physical. Your body can be trained to make free throws, but your mind has to be focused on success if you want to make the basket.

If you are good at shooting the ball then the last thing you want to do is lift weights. Being weighed down by too much bulky muscle can have a negative impact on your jump shot. As a shooting guard, having bulky arm muscles can actually reduce the number of successful shots.

Play by yourself to practice. Sometimes during off season, or when practicing, you can’t play as a team or find even a single opponent. No problem. You can still get a lot accomplished with solo games. Work on your free throws or your pivot moves. Many things can be practiced.

Building core muscle is key to playing great basketball. This is the hip area, the lower back, and the abs. A core that is not strong enough limits the linkage between arms and legs. The stronger your core, the higher you will jump.

TIP! Better your basketball skills by watching the pros play. Go to actual games or watch on TV.

Ask your fellow team members which of your skills that they admire. Is there something that you excel at? Perhaps you have an excellent understanding of defensive strategies or you are the fastest player on your team. Honest feedback can really help you to narrow in on areas where you might need a little extra help practicing.

Pay attention closely to the shoulders if you’re starting to slump when you shoot. When you’re in a shooting slump it usually means that your shoulders are not square to the hoop. Your shoulders should always be square towards the basket. Try to line your dominant shoulder up with the rim.

To become a great free thrower, practice and develop a routine you will use during each shot. This can include the number of times you dribble, how you position your feet, or anything else. As long as it’s quick, using a consistent routine can help your body retain the memory to make those shots after your “ritual.”

TIP! Hand signals can help stop you from turning the ball over. One of the most challenging aspects is trying to send the ball to your teammate as they are going for the basket.

When you are on the defense, the key is to stay as low as you can. Staying low gives you a better chance to play the ball and helps you move more quickly. 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.

Clearly, there are quite a few ways to help yourself play a better game. Many of them are as simple as learning a technique and then practicing repeatedly. Practice is important to anything worth doing – just do it! You can build better basketball skills no matter who you practice with.