Want to learn how to grip a basketball when shooting? So you may not be LeBron James or Kobe Bryant. That is still no excuse not to be able to shoot a basketball without looking like a dork. Never again will you be made fun of for shooting your free throws granny-style or attempting to drop-kick in a three-pointer. Just follow these simple pointers on how to grip a basketball when shooting and start looking like an athlete, or at least stop looking like someone’s grandmother.
To learn to grip a basketball when shooting, you will need:
- 1 regulation basketball
To grip a basketball when shooting:
- Hold the ball in your hand with your palm up and your fingers pointing toward you. A good way to ensure that you have the proper positioning is to hold the basketball out in front of you in your shooting hand with your palm facing up. Then, rotate the ball 180 degrees and bring it up so your elbow is even with your shoulder, and parallel to the ground. This may seem obvious, but it is the first thing that shooting coaches at all levels tell their players.
- Avoid the “chicken wing.” This occurs when your shooting elbow sticks out to the side and your shot inevitably soars past the far end of the backboard. Tuck that elbow in. (This tip should in no way discourage you from eating chicken wings after playing basketball; this is completely acceptable.)
- Your non-shooting hand is not for shooting! It should rest ever so slightly against the side of the basketball and guide your shot. It should not provide any force. And unless your rec specs double as x-ray goggles, your non-shooting arm should not be right in front of your face. Position it so that you have a nice window through which to see the basket.
- Make a “T” with your thumbs. Your shooting hand and your non-shooting hand should be positioned so that they form a “T” on the basketball, about half an inch apart. Just remember, “T” is for “That dude does not look like my grandma.”
- Rest the basketball on the pads of your hand. Everyone is impressed that you have big enough hands to palm a basketball. Now stop doing it. Shooting is not a time to palm the ball. The ball should rest on the pads of your hands and fingers. Avoid cupping the ball in your palm or holding it on your finger tips.
Now just aim, bend your knees and let her fly.