What does it take to be a great basketball player? The fact is that it requires more than just talent. You have to practice, learn and work hard to be able to become a basketball great. Start by reading this article in full to absorb all the advice it provides you.
When you dribble a basketball, you are supposed to use your fingertips. Many people think you are supposed to use your palm, but this is incorrect. Using the tips of your fingers when you are dribbling the ball will result in you being able to dribble more in a shorter amount of time.
Make sure that you practice teamwork when you are on the court, or people may have a hard time dealing with you. You may want to impress others on the court, and this may give you the idea that you should shoot the ball yourself, but it would be best to pass the ball to someone who is open.
Practice dribbling the ball on a number of different surfaces. As you get used to how the ball reacts, you will be able to adjust your game accordingly. How you handle the ball can make or break the game. Turnovers lead to points that your team may not be able to recover from, so your skills in this area need to be solid.
When dribbling, make sure to keep your head straight up. If you find that you keep looking down at the ball, you haven’t practiced dribbling enough. You need to gain the advantage of being able to see the court while dribbling. Then you can surprise your opponent with smart passes and quick drives to areas where they are not.
Jump naturally when shooting the ball. Do not overjump or else you will throw the ball’s trajectory off course. Learn this technique by performing it in slow motion during your practice sessions. Jump vertically and do not release the ball until you are at the peak of your jump.
It is not always necessary to dribble the ball. In fact, you should only dribble it when it is part of your play. For instance, you will want to dribble the ball when you are trying to get the ball up the court, to get in a position for passing, or to get the defense off you.
Don’t prepare more for a game than you do for a practice. If you don’t tape up for practice, don’t do it for games. You will naturally take games more seriously than practice. However, you don’t need to start panicking over a game by overpreparing. Have a consistent and calm routine.
In the off season, it is important to stay in shape so you can be at your best when the games begin again. Formulate a few goals, but make sure they are goals that you can actually reach. For example, jogging may be a part of your routine. Start slow and then increase your time as your endurance goes up. You are more likely to stick with your program this way.
Set up an obstacle course with chairs or pylons and then dribble around them. This will help you learn how to get around opponents while keeping control of the ball. As you get better, make sure your back is to the obstacle as you go by to protect the ball from it.
You need to constantly disrupt your opponents in order to be a great defensive player. Take them out of their own comfort zone. Make assertive moves, keeping your opponent unsure of your next move. Do not allow them to pick and choose their plays. Otherwise, the opponents will win all the shots and dominate you. You should make the initial move and throw them off.
If you want to be sure that you are dribbling correctly, dribble in some dirt. When you’re done, take a look at your hands. If your fingers are dirty while your palm is nice and clean, then you are holding the ball correctly. A dirty palm means you need to refine your technique.
To play the best defense, you have to beat your man to the place he wants to go and force him to go somewhere else. This means that your feet have to move quickly, so practice shuffling from side to side without crossing your feet. This is the quickest way to move laterally on the floor and will frustrate your man.
Stick with full court basketball during practice. It might be fun to play some half court ball games, but you aren’t teaching your team how to deal with the full court. Plus, the rules of a half court game may be quite different than a full court game. It’s best to practice what you’ll be doing during game time.
Don’t think that a shot has to be perfect to be taken. A lot of good shooters constantly remind themselves that the standard goal is large enough to take in two balls at once. There’s also a backboard that sometimes gives a lucky bounce. That leaves a good margin for error where you can make a less than perfect shot and still get points.
Holding the ball correctly means using just your fingers, and that requires great hand strength. To build this, hold the ball in your right hand and squeeze your fingers together until it flies out and over to your left hand. Repeat on the other side, and continue until your fingers become tired.
Only cease dribbling when you are prepared to shoot or pass. If you stop, you limit your options. Basically the only move you have at this point is to pivot while finding an opening to move the ball. This causes you to be wide open to some double teaming by the other team and increase your chances of having the ball stolen.
If you want to be a top star on the court, use these tips to better your game. Practice every day so that you can learn them through and through. If you start to use expert advice when you play, you will find that you become an expert yourself over time.