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Dedication is key to becoming a better basketball player. When you play for amusement, you still want to win! By following the tips here, you can improve your game.

Make sure you dribble properly by keeping your head held up, facing forward. If you need to look at the ball while dribbling, you’ll need to practice more. One of the best ways to improve your dribbling is to bring your ball along anytime you need to walk somewhere. On your way to the grocery store, practice your dribbling. Get used to looking up as you go so that you can focus your attention on the court and not on your hands and the ball.

Crossing over is a vital skill to have for handling the basketball. This technique passes the ball back and forth from the right hand to the left hand. You need to perform crossovers very quickly to get good results. Once you master the art of the crossover dribble, you will be able to change directions quicker.

Work on improving your strengths to become an even better player. Your skills might not make you an all-start every time out, but playing up your strengths makes you a great contributor. Know the things you’re great at and keep practicing until there is no one better than you.

It is important that you practice layups. 80% of all shots in a game are usually layups. Whenever you practice, approach the goal full speed, jump and take a smooth shot. Running and jumping well in practice means better jump shooting in actual games.

Free throws are as mental as physical. You must be mentally strong to be a consistent free throw shooter. Relax your mind and keep your concentration centered on the basket to make more of these freebies.

Even professional basketball players spend a lot of time watching other people play basketball. Go to games, watch them on TV and you can also watch videos. Every player has skills that make them good, and you can work on the skills they use.

To learn how to pass well, drill without dribbling. Passing drills with your team is important for accurate passes during game time, and you can try doing them without dribbling at all. Try not to lose yourself in frustration if you do not master it immediately, with the more time that passes with you and your team practicing, the more accurate they will become.

Before, during and after the season, play out games by yourself. Sometimes you cannot find a team of people to play basketball with. That’s fine. In solo games, you can accomplish quite a bit. Practice free throws and work on pivot moves. You can always work on something.

Figuring out the opponent is a great way to do well against a tight defense. Watch tapes and be sure you’re paying attention to scouting reports. Figure out which people are right or left handed. Understanding your opponent allows you to effectively play defense. Strong defenders are knowledgeable defenders.

Now that you are done reading this article, it’s time to put these tips into practice. You will start to see improvement little by little as you remember what you’ve read, use the tips, and practice them. Those three things are keys to success.