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How to Play Basketball Better

Priceless Tips and Suggestions on How to Play Basketball Better

Anyone who plays basketball knows the importance of passing accurately and defending effectively. These are things that come with better physical fitness, but if you really want to improve your game you need to focus on improving your shooting abilities and your dribbling skills...
Rahul Thadani
Last Updated: Mar 6, 2018
Basketball is a great sport that is loved by many people around the world, and there are many people who are constantly looking for tips and secrets on how to improve their basketball game. The very first thing that an individual needs to do is improve his physical fitness and endurance, because basketball is a high intensity contact sport that requires a player to run up and down the court many times in a match. People who are not physically fit will find it very hard to keep up in this game, and this is their single biggest disadvantage.
Someone who has played a lot of official matches and tournaments will certainly know some of the secrets to have a better game, but there are many other things that a beginner can focus on as well. The rules of the game should be crystal clear to a player, and this requires consulting someone who is aware of all these rules, or reading an official rulebook.
Further tips will involve shooting techniques, dribbling moves, passing accuracy and defending efficiency, and these can all be learned through some physical drills, and by actually playing the game against a skilled opponent.
How to Shoot a Basketball Better
The ultimate aim of the game is to get the ball in the opponents basket and score more points than them. For this reason, effective shooting is the single biggest advantage that a player can have. Someone who takes 5 shots and scores them all is a far better player than someone who takes 15 shots and misses more than half of them. It is this accuracy that needs to be worked on, and this can only be achieved by recognizing the positions from where your shots are the most accurate.
While taking a chance and shooting on sight is an effective piece of advice for many players, it is far better to focus on a better conversion rate. Here are some tips to improve one's shooting ability.
  • You must spend hours practicing your jump shots and layups from a variety of positions on the court. Only then will you know your most favorable positions.
  • The grip with which you hold the ball is also very important. You need to focus on using your fingers and less of your palms while shooting, and your stronger hand should hold the ball while your weaker hand supports it.
  • You need to time your jump to perfection as well, and release the ball when you are at the highest point in the air. Work on your standing jumps a lot, and try to achieve as much height as possible. Work on your footwork too, and ensure that both of your feet point in the direction of the basket when you shoot.
  • The follow through is also very important after you take a shot. This involves flicking your wrists when the ball leaves your hand, and your fingers should be pointing downwards when this happens.
  • When you are taking a free throw you need to keep your feet shoulder width apart, point your feet in the direction of the basket and also ensure that you hold the basketball around the seams. This will allow you to get a smoother and cleaner action when you shoot.
How to Dribble a Basketball Better
Dribbling is one of the key parts of the game, and the person who is moving the ball needs to do so with speed and accuracy. The objective is to change direction as often as possible so as to catch your opponent off balance and run past him, but this is easier said than done. There is no point in dribbling with fancy moves if you cannot do the simple things right, and here are the key points that you need to focus on.
  • The ball must always be close to your body. If there is too much distance between your body and the ball, the opponent will be able to steal it with ease.
  • You must always try to use both hands while dribbling. If you only use one hand then your actions will become very predictable, and the player who is marking you will be able to read your game better.
  • You need to always keep your eyes up when you are dribbling. The whole purpose is to pick a good pass and spot a teammates run, so people who need to look at the ball while dribbling do not make good dribblers. Have a good understanding with your teammates and understand the concept of passing into space, and release the ball at the right moment.
  • Avoid using the palm while dribbling, and focus on using only your fingers.
  • Also lower your body slightly so that your center of gravity is closer to the ground. This gives better control while dribbling.
  • Try to dribble the ball to the side of your body and not right in front, as doing so will it make it simple for the opponent to steal the ball again.
  • Try and change direction as often as possible, and do so by twisting and turning your body. Also remember to bounce the ball hard on the ground so that it reaches your hand without you needing to slouch too much.
In order to learn how to play basketball better, you also need to understand the rules and regulations of the game completely, you need to understand the various basketball positions and what they do and you also need to learn how to do defense effectively. Improving your game will take time and it will come with experience, and you can do so only by paying close attention to details and working on every small aspect of your game.