Playing Like A Professional: What You Need To Know About Basketball


Many people around the world love watching and playing basketball. In the game of basketball, there is much to learn about. Keep reading to learn what you can do to improve your basketball game.

The Importance of Defense

Two friends playing basketball on a street track

It’s easy to focus on offense when learning to play, but your practice time would be better spent on defense. Basketball games are won with a good defense. The offense gets lots of attention, but if the defense is lacking no basketball team will ever win a game.

Mastering Dribbling Techniques

When dribbling, your head must be up, and you need to look forward. If you must look at the ball while dribbling, you haven’t practiced enough. Bring the ball no matter where you go. Dribble as you walk to the market. If you look at your ball, you can’t see the court.

Perfecting the Crossover

When using the ball a lot, you must relearn a crossover. A crossover happens when you switch hands when the ball is in. It has to be done fast to be effective. Once done the right way, the crossover dribble can help you change directions and get down the court more efficiently.

Practice Makes Perfect

Work on catching passes frequently. When practicing, try catching great passes as well as really bad passes. Some passes may be too high, too low or off-target, so you should practice receiving passes often. Learn how to catch any sort of throw.

Strengthening Core and Footwork


Play basketball games with yourself during the season and before it. Basketball is a sport played in teams, but there are times when no one is around to play with you. This is perfectly acceptable. Playing on your own can give you the chance to work on isolated areas of your game. Work on your pivot moves or practice your free throws. There are many things you can work on.

Emphasizing Speed and Quickness

As you perform your fitness routine, make it a point to target your core and your footwork. If the core muscles are in good shape, you will feel lighter on your feet. Don’t forget to also work out muscles in your back, buttocks, abdomen, and hips. Much like boxers do, you can bolster your footwork and agility by using a jump rope.

Strategic Rebounding

Quickness is something you have to have when playing basketball. Make an effort to do all things on the court more speedily than the opposing team. Regular drilling will increase your speed. Don’t play too fast and risk your chances. This can cause you to get out of control and make careless mistakes.

Defensive Strategies

To rebound a free throw, you have to be quick. Guards will be attempting to stop you, so get around them. Then you gain the ball without the foul.

Dribbling hard helps you protect the ball. The ball bounces faster, giving the guard less time to steal. If the defense gets to be too much, look to pass the ball to someone open.

A good basketball drill to perform is to see if you can get the ball down the entire court in 5 or fewer dribbles. This can seem impossible, but you’ll get incredible speed and length if you do it. This can mean easy lay-ups on fast breaks, or just giving your team numbers for a moment.

Accept a charge when you can. This strategy can result in your opponent taking a foul and your team getting a defensive stop and taking possession of the ball. This can throw off the opposing team and mess up their rhythm.

Adaptable Dribbling Skills

A powerful play called the trapping machine, is to have your guards wait for the point guard to come just past midcourt. They should then trap the point guard. Concurrently, have forwards go to the wings. Your forwards should easily be able to steal the pass that the point guard throws.

Practice dribbling while switching the momentum of your body from side to side. Basketball games are fast and you will encounter different scenarios while dribbling. There may be times when you are covered by multiple opponents; however, there may be times when you have the whole court in front of you. You have to be able to lean and still dribble straight. This will help get you out of jams quickly.

Team Communication

Stay in communication with your teammates. Basketball is played by a team. Offense and defense aren’t 1 on 1. Everyone has each others’ backs. Communicate with them so that they know when you need assistance so that you all collectively play better.


Nutrition and Fitness

If you’re training to become a very good basketball player then start changing your diet. Basketball uses a lot of energy; therefore, it is important to fuel your body with lean protein and whole grains. You want to make sure that your body has enough energy to keep going; think about eating chicken, nuts, and whole-grain bread. Avoid sugar and salt when possible.

Exploiting Opponents’ Weaknesses

Try to force your opponent to rely on their non-dominant hand. If your opponent favors their right side, step to them using your left foot. When successful, they will have to switch the side they are using. Your head and chest should be parallel so your body is primed to snatch the ball.

Mental Focus and Shot Selection

When shooting the ball you have to be sure not to get nervous. Focus on the basketball hoop. Specifically, make it a habit to look right behind the basket when you take a shot. However, for lay-ups, focus your eyes on the spot of the backboard on which you are banking the ball.

When you have the ball you have to know when a shot should be made or a pass needs to be. It is far better to contribute to the winning shot than be the only person involved in the shot that lost the game.


    Basketball is great as a mode of exercise as well as a fun spectator pastime. To make sure you are getting all you can out of the game, become informed. Hopefully, everything that you read here brought you much closer to helping you understand this sport.

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