How to shoot a basketball

Learn how to hold a basketball, which is the first step in learning how to correctly shoot a basketball

How to Shoot a Basketball

It all starts with your fingers. Do not palm the ball! There should be no palm touching the basketball with your shooting hand. The ball should rest easily on your fingertips (not really the tips, but the ends of your fingers). There should be about an inch or so of space between your palm and the ball. Your fingers should be comfortably spaced, not too narrow or too far apart but enough to get good coverage on the basketball. Keep your thumb in! If your thumb is too far out you won’t get proper rotation of the basketball! Space the thumb a comfortable distance away from your other fingers. The greatest amount of space should be between your index and middle finger. Spread these two fingers a bit wider apart than your other fingers are spaced. These are the fingers that you guide the ball with! They are critically important! These two fingers should be aligned straight to the basket. The ball should “roll” out from between these two fingers when you shoot to create back spin. You need to physically feel the ball shoot from the tips of these two fingers.

The non-shooting hand is not involved in shooting the basketball at all! It is only there to support the shooting hand. Rest the non-shooting hand on the side of the basketball. Not in the front, back, top or bottom but directly on the side as shown in the picture below. No force in shooting the ball should be derived from your weak hand whatsoever.


Correct hand Position.
Correct Hand Position For Shooting A Basketball
Improper hand position. The supporting hand is in front of the basketball instead of on the side.
Incorrect Hand Position For Shooting A Basketball
Improper finger position. The thumb on the shooting hand is too far out which will not allow you to create proper rotation on the basketball.
Incorrect Finger Position For Shooting A Basketball
Next... learn proper wrist positioning and follow through.

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