How To Improve Your Shot In Basketball
Learning how to improve your shot in basketball is a matter of mastering the proper mechanics and practicing, practicing, practicing. Not even Michael Jordan was born knowing how to pull off a sweet jumper. He spent hours and hours in the gym practicing. As with all aspects in basketball, improving your shot involves the dedication to work at it. With these tips, you’ll see the improvement in your shot in no time.
- Your legs. Yes, your legs. You can’t shoot a good jump shot without your legs. The first step in improving your shot in basketball is to improve your base. You need to be balanced. Your feet should be almost shoulder length apart.
- Your hands. The next step to improving your jump shot is understanding and applying your hand placement on the ball. Your shooting hand should be spread, gripping the top of the ball (which will be the bottom of the ball when you shoot). Your guide hand, or off hand, is only there for support. Place it on the side of the ball.
- Ball placement. Gripping the ball as described earlier, it should be held by the shooting hand and supported by the guide hand on the side of the shooting hand. For example, if you’re a lefty then the ball should be to the immediate left of your belly button, no further to the left and no lower than your hip, with your right hand on the side of the ball for support.
- Elbow and arm placement. This is one of the key tips to improving your shot. When the ball is raised into the shooting position, the elbow and forearm should form a spring like shape directly under the ball. Think of the arm of a catapult when it’s ready to fire.
- Elevation. Think of your legs as rockets. If you want to improve your shot, you need to improve the quickness with which you jump into the shot. Simple jump rope exercises can help you with this. You want to, as quickly as you can, elevate to the peak of your jump.
- Back to the hands. As you begin your shot, you should be raising the ball over your head. The guide hand should be supporting the side of the ball. Your shooting hand should be in a cocked back position with the ball firmly resting on your palm. Fingers spread on both the guide and shooting hand.
- The shot. At the peak of your jump, you’ll be pushing the ball upward with your forearm and elbow. With your cocked hand, you’re going to be pushing the ball and releasing it towards the rim. The guide hand helps the ball to go into the desired direction.
- Follow through. Everything has to be done in balance. F your energy to land correctly after the jump. It’s like willing the ball to go to the right place. You don’t want to jump off two feet and land on your knees. Not only would that hurt, but it throws off the harmony of the jump shot.
- Shooter's secrets. Ball rotation is key. When you let the shot go, you should be flicking it off of your fingertips. It creates a backspin that greatly increases the chance that the shot will fall into the net. Ever hear of a shooter's bounce? That’s what it is. It’s putting a good amount of rotation on the ball so that if it hits the rim it has a better chance of bouncing through the net. Another secret is shooting the ball with a decent amount of arc. Flat shots aren’t going to go in. So, when you let the shot fly, your shooting arm should be extended significantly over your head in front of your body aimed at the rim. Oh, and spread fingers give you better ball control on the shot as well.
- Practice. Practice, Practice, Practice. It’s self-explanatory. After you’ve developed and become comfortable with your shooting form, you need to practice constantly to see improvement.