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5 of the Biggest Basketball Shooting Mistakes (And How to Fix Them)

- By

For most of these fixes, you are going to need to start away from the hoop and take hundreds and thousands of shots. You can find a wall and do this by yourself or find a line and shoot it back and forth to a partner. Once, you begin to feel comfortable with your adjustment, take hundreds of shots really close to the basket and gradually move out.

  1. Thumb on Shooting Hand

    Players often have the ball sit on the tip of their thumb on their shooting hand. This position is awkward and forces the body to strain to hold the proper shooting form. In order to be a good shooter, you have to be comfortable.

    It you don't strain, your elbow sticks too far out.

    How do you fix it?

    You need to have the ball rest on the side of the thumb rather than on the tip of the thumb on every shot. It may feel awkward at first, but it will help tremendously and more of your shots will travel to the dead-center of the rim. If you can not determine when you are doing this, you may need to have someone critique your shot or video tape it.


  2. Thumb on Guide Hand

    Some players flick the ball with their thumb on the guide hand when shooting the basketball. This will cause serious problems for the shooter and the ball will often spray left and right. It's tough enough to judge the distance, yet add another factor of left and right into the equation.

    Most players develop this problem when they are too weak to get the ball to the rim, and the habit carries through their teenage and adult years.

    How do you fix it?

    You can squeeze your thumb against the index finger on your guide hand. This will not let you shoot the ball with the thumb. If the problem still continues, take your guide hand off of the ball by about a half-inch and shoot with one hand.


  3. Unnecessary Jerky Movements

    These jerky movements can cause you to become an inconsistent shooter:

    • Twisting the body.

    • Leaning Backwards, Forwards, and to the left or right.

    How do you fix it?

    You need to evaluate when this jerky movement is happening and what type of jerky movement is occurring. This may mean you need to video tape your shot if you have nobody to help.

    Two major reasons players twist their body when they shoot is:

    1. Their feet are not aligned correctly.

    2. They bring their guide hand down too early.

    Make sure your feet up correctly before every shot. This means you may need to pivot more as you receive the pass or as you step into your shot off the dribble. If you use a hop, make sure that you are turning enough while in the air to align your feet properly as you land. If your feet are not set correctly, this will force your body to twist while shooting to try to compensate for it.

    If you bring your guide hand down too early, it brings extra movement into your shot that causes you to twist your body. If you don't believe me, sit in your chair and shoot with one hand and bring your guide hand down to your waist at the same time. What naturally happens? Your torso will twist.

    That's why it is important to keep your guide hand extended in the correct position.

    Pro players use this method to stop their upper-body from twisting when they take shots when they are off-balance or their feet are not aligned appropriately. It helps keep their upper body from twisting during the shot. I do NOT advise for players under the age of 18 to practice this shot, because it can mess up your mechanics.

    A good way to stop leaning is to "Stay Tall." That means you try to hold a posture that would make you tall. Don't strain to do it, but try to stay relaxed and upright. Make sure that the players jump and land on the same spot. You may also have analyzed when the player starts to jerk their body or lean in a certain direction. The player may only do a jerky movement when dribbling to the left and pulling up for a jumper. If this happens, they need to take hundreds and thousands of repetitions doing that same type of shot with great shooting form.


  4. No Arc - Flat Shot - Flinging the wrist.

    If you are missing a lot of shots because you have a flat shot or you don't seem to get many shooter's bounces, it could be because you are flinging your wrist or have a flat shot.

    You can check to see if you have this problem by bringing the ball to your set point and then bringing it straight down. If your shooting-hand lands on top of your head (or the back of your head) instead of grazing your forehead, then you've got a bad set point.

    How do you fix it?

    Move the ball forward so that when you bring it straight down, the back of your shooting hand grazes your forehead. Practice shooting to yourself from this position until it becomes your new set point.

    You should reinforce your new set point by daily form shooting close to the basket. In fact, you should rebuild your shot slowly by stepping back one step at a time as you establish consistency from a given range, using the new set point.


  5. Shooting after the Top of your Jump.

    Players who shoot past the top of their jump will often develop a hitch and jerky shot. The same with players who try to jump as high as they can on every shot.

    A player should focus on shooting before the top of their jump for a few different reasons:

    • Quicker release. If you shoot before the top of your release, it gives the defender less time to recover to defend the shot.

    • Make more shots. The shot is fluid which results in a smoother and softer shot, because you don't stop the shot motion at any point in your shot.

    • Longer range. If you shoot at or after the top of your shot, it takes a lot more upper body strength to get the ball to the rim. If you shoot as you are going up, the momentum from your legs help carry the ball a lot farther. Try shooting away from the hoop when doing this.

    How do you fix it?

    This one is pretty simple. You need thousands of repetitions shooting the basketball before the top of your jump.


In order to fix any of these problems, you are going to have be persistent and focused. "Sometimes, you have to take two steps backwards, to take three steps forwards." What that means is that your shot will most likely become worse before it gets better. Always keep the long-term in perspective. Who cares if you don't shoot the ball well during summer league, if you'll be able to shoot lights out once basketball season rolls around!

To learn more about improving your shot, we recommend...

FREE Basketball Shooting Workouts, Drills & Guide



Comments

Elliott Johnson says:
9/13/2008 at 12:50:13 PM

This Tip has helped me imprve my shot greatly and now i am my team captain thx Breakthrough Basketball


Hadi Sherazi says:
9/25/2008 at 11:14:23 AM

Thanks this is great and am going to work on my shot using these tips. However i dont understand which part of mistake number 3 we shouldn't practice unless we are eighteen. Can anyone clear this up for me?


Joe Haefner says:
9/25/2008 at 11:47:01 AM

Hi Hadi,

There are a couple of reasons I do not advise players to shoot fade-aways before the age of 18.

1. It's likely that there are other areas that you should concentrate on before practicing a fade-away. Only extremely talented players could practice this shot before going to college. JJ Redick one of the best shooters to ever play did not practice a fade-away until he was in college. First, he perfected his shot. Then, he progressed to more difficult shots when he was in college.

2. Most players are not strong enough and lack the proper coordination. This can lead to bad mechanics. so, practicing a fade-away can mess up your normal shot.

If you are a high school player, do not mess with it. There is too many aspects of the game to work on to become a better player. Only if you have perfected your shot and have proper strength, would I suggest to shoot a fade-away.


shruti says:
9/26/2008 at 1:38:21 AM

this is a very useful video.. check out


Hadi Sherazi says:
9/26/2008 at 4:37:08 AM

Thanks
i will take you advice


Hadi Sherazi says:
9/26/2008 at 4:39:17 AM

Your*


Canny says:
9/27/2008 at 3:36:10 PM

the best drill ever. thanks for this mail, "Breakthrough Basketball"


Priyanka says:
9/30/2008 at 1:13:59 AM

Ammazing....your tips really solve the problems......i am really impressed with your service


kevin says:
9/30/2008 at 8:40:57 AM

thanks a lot man..................!it helps


Coach Steve says:
10/22/2008 at 8:25:49 AM

I coach grade school children. My second-grade son is moving from an 8-foot to 10-foot goal. He does not seem to have much power in his shot, so his distance is limited. If you get beyond 6 feet from the basket with a 10-foot goal, he has a problem. I do not think the problem is strength. Is it form? What are you tips?


Joe Haefner says:
10/22/2008 at 11:24:40 AM

Hi Coach Steve,

I would suggest making sure sits his hips back to use his legs to develop more power for the shot. I would also suggest dipping the elbow slightly to give him more power.

That problem is very common for 2nd graders. I don't know too many 2nd graders that can shoot with good form at 10-foot hoop. They are just too small and too weak. I would usually have 1st & 2nd graders shoot at a 8 foot hoop with a mini ball. I would have 3rd & 4th graders shoot with a junior ball at a 9 foot hoop. Then, I would progress to a 10 foot hoop once players start entering the 5th grade.

That is part of the reason that you don't see too many GREAT shooters anymore. They develop poor shooting mechanics, because they start shooting at a 10 foot hoop with a big ball when they are young, less-coordinated, and weak. They have to find other ways to get the ball to the hoop, so they develop bad mechanics like twisting and slinging the ball up there.

Basketball needs some sort of progression like the current system that baseball has. You don't see us throwing youth kids onto a major league field and tell them to play baseball. They start on smaller fields with closer mounds and closer bases. That’s part of the reason that the rest of world is catching up with the US in basketball. They have better progressive systems.



Joe Haefner says:
10/22/2008 at 11:27:02 AM

You can also check out our shooting mechanics page at this link: http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/fundamentals/shooting-technique.html


Jeff says:
10/22/2008 at 2:46:03 PM

Steve - Bending the knees and using the legs will help with power. Have him try shooting the ball over the 9-10 foot back board. He'll have to use all legs to do that. This little trick helps develop distance. Once he figures out how to utilize the legs for power, that will help.

With that said, 2nd grade is really young. Probably just need to wait to get older or use lower hoops. I don't suggest 10 ft rims at that age! Not to mention, things like soccer and martial arts are great ways to develop athletes at this age. Basketball will come with time and other sports are better to focus on at this young age.


Sean Kuck says:
11/2/2008 at 6:24:59 PM

Hi, I am an 11 year old who loved to play basketball. I have played AAU for three years now. I have traveled all over the US already to play in big tournaments. I do struggle with my shot when I get tired. This article I think will help me a lot with keeping my hands correct and my thumb out of the way.

Thanks so much and I look forward to reading more articles.

Sean Kuck


Hadi Sherazi says:
12/6/2008 at 11:06:06 AM

Hi,
I am a decent shooter but a month ago, my shot was really off for about 2-3 weeks.
I am glad to say that now my shot is "back" but i was wondering if you had any tips on what to do if my shot is off in the future.

Thanks


Joe Haefner says:
12/6/2008 at 11:54:14 AM

Hi Hadi,

Keep shooting. Basketball is a percentage game. You're going to have some days where you don't make as many as normal and you're going to have some days where you make way more than normal.

Try not to think about things and keep your head clear.

For more mental tips, you could look at these articles: http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/fundamentals/shooting.html#mental



alex contreras says:
12/18/2008 at 2:20:11 PM

thanks for the info but im already the captain of my team and my friend tried the steps but still sucks at shooting and he practiced for 3 months so i dont think your tips work


jeremy says:
12/19/2008 at 12:53:10 AM

thanx mob 4 all wat u guys are doing especially 4 me 4rom a country where yo dreams of becoming a proffesional player are no where to b seen wit you guys am so grateful coz slowly by slowly my dreams are being realised is there a way may b u could help me get somebody to sponsor my basketball otherwise all to say thanx the drills are real


John says:
1/7/2009 at 4:10:24 PM

I recently stoppd using my guide hand thumb to shoot and thats all good from every where from three I have to go extremely slow and can't get it to the hoop even then. I have decided to use my thumb past the three line. Any advice on how to increas range without thumb? I'm 13 and can't afford to stop shooting 3s as I make about 4 a game and our team needs the points.


Joe Haefner says:
1/8/2009 at 10:56:48 AM

Hi John,

Would you rather have some success now or more success in the future? I know it's difficult, but who cares how many games you win when you are 13 years old. Look at the big picture. Wouldn't you rather be a great player when you're 16, 17, or 18 rather than make a few more 3-pointers when you're 13?

By consistently using your thumb on your guide hand on your thumb, you are never going to be consistent shooter. It's naturally going to push the ball left and right and you'll never reach your potential as a shooter.

It also sounds like you may be having problems generating power to get the ball there. Try pushing your hips and getting your butt down in order to generate more power from your legs. Practice by not shooting at the hoop at first.

If you don't fix it now, your shot will not be as good as it could have been when you're older.

Also, your teaching yourself two different shots. One where you use your thumb and one where you don't. This will make it extremely difficult to have any consistentcy with your shot.

My advice would be to stop shooting 3's until you've perfected the form. Who cares if you can't shoot 3's until your 14, 15, or 16. Try to look at the long-term and be the best you can be.


WWH says:
1/30/2009 at 9:50:59 AM

Great tips on the physical aspects of shooting.
What can I do to develop the mental/confidence aspect? I have a daughter who is a good ball handler at point guard, very strong defender, but she will rarely shoot, even when wide open, and she has a pretty good shot. Its almost like the fear of missing keeps her from taking the chance. In defense of her coaches, I don''t recall them yelling at her for taking a shot she has missed, however, the message is pretty strong to "run the offense" to the nth option.


me says:
1/30/2009 at 9:39:33 PM

thanx it helped alot


Jeff Haefner says:
1/31/2009 at 9:16:04 AM

WWH,

Confidence is a very important aspect of shooting. Actually you have to be confident to be a good shooter. Confidence comes from practice, success, knowledge, and praise.

Of course practice is important. But for players I think a big thing is for them to realize that you're going to miss!! It's no big deal. Don't worry or even think about it.

The greatest shooters in the world shoot around 50%. That means they fail around half of the time!!!

You're going to miss shots. So what? How many times have you seen Michael Jordan start the game cold and miss 6 or 7 shots in a row -- yet still end up scoring 40 points in the game? Just because you miss a few shots doesn't mean you won't catch fire any minute. That's the mentality. You just can't worry about it.

With that said, you need to practice and practice smart. I like grooving about 50 shots nice and close the the basket. This is a great confidence builder because you see that shot going in over and over again. Groove shots every day.

If interested in more tips, we have an entire ebook filled with shooting tips and plenty of mentality building techniques.
http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/pr/btshooting.html

Hope this helps.


Joe Haefner says:
1/31/2009 at 9:20:45 AM

Hi WWH,

If your daughter has a coach that instills fear in the players, it's going to be difficult for her. I prefer to coach players and let them play. If they make a mistake repeatedly, I teach them an alternate option.

If you want, check out this page and listen to this audio: http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/audio/news7kelbick.html

It has a section on How Stress Retards Growth.

After your daughter has taken thousands of shots from stationary position and showed proper form, move onto practicing shots off of the move.

Once, she has taken enough repetitions, she should start to practice those shots in game-like situations.

We also have some mental tips on shooting at this page: http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/fundamentals/shooting.html#mental


WWH says:
1/31/2009 at 3:45:53 PM

Thanks Joe. Interview audio was very good, beyond just the topic we were discussing. As a coach, its amazing how easy it is to repeat the mistakes of others rather than learn from them.


chances718 says:
2/10/2009 at 7:49:30 PM

these are the only tips that put some arc and backspin on my shot thanks a lot !!!!!!!!


chances718 says:
2/10/2009 at 7:50:31 PM

love these tips thanks!!!


College says:
3/4/2009 at 6:17:48 AM

I'm 21 and in a small private college. I also am a head coach at a private Jr. High and assistant at a varsity. I've had a good shot since my 11th grade year in high school from practice but the biggest problem I've had is inconsistency. I think I've figured out the problem and all I need is practice to fix it, but I have a question still. I think I've always had the ball sitting a little too far up on my fingertips, espescially my thumb. but now that I'm practicing moving it down, I feel like I'm palming it. Where EXACTLY is the ball supposed to sit on the fingers, espescially the thumb? And how long do you think it will take to fix this problem?


College says:
3/4/2009 at 6:19:44 AM

One more question. Also, I've been told that the index finger is supposed to be in the center of the ball. Is this true or should the center of the ball be in between the index and middle finger?


Joe Haefner says:
3/4/2009 at 7:37:32 AM

You definitely don't want to have the ball on your finger tips. You want it to rest on your finger pads. Look at the second picture from the top. It should look similar to that. Notice, the ball is resting on the side of your thumb, on the finger pads, and you can see my palm.

As for index and middle finger, shoot one way and be consistent with it. I prefer to have the middle of the ball between the index finger and middle finger, but as long as you have your hand behind the ball I wouldn't worry about it too much. Don Kelbick recently sent me a response to an email where he says that you want to have the basics of shooting down, but if you pay too much detail to the little details, it can cause "paralysis analysis" which means you over analyze your shot and end up thinking too much. This causes you to always change things which can lead to lost confidence and we know that is the last thing you want.

Just make sure you have good basic form and practice, practice, practice.


Kolja ( From the Netherlands) says:
3/29/2009 at 10:43:15 AM

Wow thanks, this really improved my shot and I now don't have to worry about by guide hand thumb otherwise I always had to take into account that the ball was going just a bit to the right. And that is quite hard when you're in a basketball game and in mid-air.


Vern Kofford says:
6/7/2009 at 1:47:33 PM

Mr. Haefner,
I'm 18 and I have played basketball my whole life. I grew up watching greats such as Jordan, Stockton, Hornachek, Malone. I have always had a pretty decent shot until I reached highschool. I had days where I shot amazing and other days where I was all over the place. I have always been able to help others critique their shots, but unable to fix my own, even though I knew what was wrong. The big thing I noticed was that every shot was different, I never shoot the same way. I've done drills, I've shot looking at mirrors, I've filmed my shot, I've had other people look at it. I just have not seemed to be albe to fix it completely so that it's consistent. I do agree with your tips, they will help people fix their shots and make them better shooters, but do you have any advice for me to help fix my own shot.


Joe Haefner says:
6/8/2009 at 9:19:23 AM

Vern,

You may be thinking too much while you shoot. Groove your shot thousands and thousands of times with good form and just let it fly. Not every shot is going to be perfect.

Another thought.. does your shot change on certain type of shots? Do you shoot well on all catch-and-shoot shots? Does your shooting form fall apart when you are moving to your right, but is great when you move to the left? Are all of your shots within 15 feet taken with good form? Does your form become inconsistent when shooting off the dribble? Those are just a few different ideas to consider. Maybe you just need to fine-tune your shot in one or more of these situations.


N/A says:
6/15/2009 at 11:59:37 PM

Is the flick of the wrist supposed to be natural or is it intentional? I really need to know in order to improve my shooter's touch.


sgjr says:
6/19/2009 at 11:55:41 AM

Hey im 21 years old and a pretty good player. I've always prided myself on defense because I was never really a good scorer. As a teen I always had troubles with my technique and release. Even now I still struggle with shooting the same every time. But as I got older from the age of 18 on I've noticed a HUGE difference in my game. I absolutely love the mid range game because there are many ways to get your shot off. I don't like the three point shot because it takes a lot more for me to set up and pull the trigger. Now the way I shoot would be more of a sling shot type shot with the ball behind my head but I've always been told that my shot looks very pure. I do have a lot of confidence issues especially around big crowds and that's when I become a non threat. I need help with my confidence big time because I can get my shots off on anyone its just a matter of me making them. How should I change my shot? How do I find better ways of releasing my shot perfectly every time?


Dino Carreon says:
9/4/2009 at 10:10:45 PM


How come during my shooting practices i have a higher % of shots going in rather than
actual games?

Is it because i'm nervous during actual games? is it because i rush my shots during game time? How do i correct this?


John Duffy says:
9/7/2009 at 5:09:18 AM

Hey im 13 and i just started playing basketball in the fourth grade. i have always been very athletic and strong. the past year i have been great at all parts of the game. i averaged about 15 points and 15 rebounds with a pair of blocks a game. before the end of my AAU season i broke my wrist in multiple places on a late hit on a shot during a tournament. it ended my season now im back to playing basketball after pt. problem is now i dont have a jump shot. before the injury i followed all your rules and had great form. now i cant shoot and feel like im back in the fourth grade just touching a basketball. what are your ideas on what i should do to get my shot back? right now practicing 3 hours a day in my driveway my shot is all over the place. where should i start?


kb says:
3/15/2010 at 3:30:02 PM

I am trying to fix my shot. Somewhere along the line it got messed up. I seem to bring the ball behind my head and it seems to be a flat shot. No matter what i do i cant seem to fix my shot. I am going to be playing d2 college lvl ball and if my shot doesn't improve i will be in trouble. Can anyone help with just throwing my shot out and starting from scratch?


dennis says:
4/12/2010 at 12:46:36 AM

my 9 yr old son seems to have to dip his shooting shoulder a bit when he shoots from about 12 ft out when shootin from 10 ft in its much better. i try tellin him not to shoot from further out but those are shots he has to take in games and of course free throw line is beyond that as he plays up a grade at his school. is this something to worry about at this age for future habits or will this correct itself on the longer shots as he gets stronger and develops. if need correcting now what are some tips for that.


logan says:
4/26/2010 at 11:02:06 PM

hey im an 8th grader and i started basketball this year so everyone else has a huge lead on me in basketball skill any tips to help me get better a catch up to the rest of my class?


fbrizzle says:
4/29/2010 at 10:25:48 AM

just asking anyone: i am 15 and i am going to play basket ball for my high school next year, i never played for a school bball team before but im really good. but i want to find a better shot so that my accriasy is better and was wondering if there is a better way to shoot.


Jeff Haefner says:
4/30/2010 at 10:12:07 AM

Logan - Talk with your coach. Ask him what you can do to get better and help them team. Do all the little things and work hard. Check out this article and listen to your coach:
http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/players/10-basketball-tips-playing-time.html


Mike says:
6/1/2010 at 6:36:51 PM

I have always been able to drive and get past a lot of people with speed and an extremely consistent layup, but my shot has not been consistent at all and its NOT because of confidence or any mental issuse because I have been playing for many years. It seems as if every time I step on a real court in like a 5v5 I always airball it at least once, and I have to tuck my elbow in because it usually sticks out. Whats the problem?


robert ronquillo says:
6/29/2010 at 11:20:04 PM

is thier any way you can demostrate this through a video segment. Would be easier to show our kids. Thank you.


Sandaru says:
7/15/2010 at 8:29:17 PM

Hey Im a 12 year old that loves playing basketball but i cant get the proper motion of shooting anywhere further than the free throw line..anywhere past that and my shots airball. Do you have any tips?

Thanks,


Justin Kim says:
8/2/2010 at 6:55:49 PM

Hi, ive been playing for two years and I've gotten a pretty good inside game, the only thing I cant do is shoot. Since I'm a lefty I cant seem to look at demonstrations and learn from them. currently i shoot above my head but i cant seem too get much range, Can you guys help me on that?


Joe Haefner says:
10/3/2010 at 8:58:10 PM

Sandaru,

My advice is simple. Don't shoot past the free throw line. At 12 years old, you don't need to shoot any further. You'll notice that as you mature and get stronger, you'll be able to shoot from further. Be patient and keep working on your shot within 15 feet.


Joe Haefner says:
10/3/2010 at 9:01:03 PM

Justin, it's very difficult to give you advice without seeing your shot.

How much range are you looking to shoot with? If you're really good inside, stick to that area until your improve your range. Remember, you don't have to be good at everything in order to be a good player. Derrick Rose is still developing a 3-point shot and he's developing into a great player. Ben Wallace could never shoot the ball and he was an all-star.

Are you being knee your knees and pushing your hips back to generate power from your legs?

Are you shooting on the way up? Don't pause at the top of your jump. Shoot before the top of your jump.


Justin Kim says:
10/9/2010 at 1:07:07 PM

usually i can shoot from the elbow. i tend to drag the ball up towards my shot


Alex says:
12/15/2010 at 10:52:30 PM

I am 18, and have been playing my entire life. I am a three-point shooting point guard for my high school team. One thing I've noticed is that my shot is always messed up during my follow through--right when I release the ball and the defender pushes me backwards, boxing me out. Is there a reason for this and a way I can prevent it?


Joe Haefner says:
12/16/2010 at 11:44:32 AM

Hi Alex,

Talk to the referee. According to the rules, that is a foul.


George says:
12/21/2010 at 10:33:53 PM

hey, im 18 and im working on my shot, this is like my 2nd year playing... is it true to shot the ball with the elbow and then flick with index, middle, and pinky finger right before the release to give the ball an arc? i tried it and it kind of works i guess. and when i shoot, i tend fadeaway because i feel like im leaning forward sometimes, how can i fix that?


Joe Haefner says:
12/28/2010 at 7:02:43 PM

George, I would take a look at this page: http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/fundamentals/shooting-technique.html

It explains how we teach shooting technique.


david says:
1/12/2011 at 7:48:02 PM

my sugestion that helps young ones shot progress and get stronger is really simple. stand in front of the rim, have your knees bent as they would be in triple threat, hold the ball out in front of you with your shooting hand, then bring the ball back up to where it is comfortable and shoot the ball with one hand many times, make sure you go up onto your toes and your "reaching into the cookie jar". i would recomend this every day !this will build your muscles in your arm and you will get a perfect shot, take about 30 shots like this then put your guide hand up to the side and make sure your not useing your thumb! all shooting hand , the ball will spin sraight.


jeff says:
1/17/2011 at 12:31:57 AM

Hi I'm a pretty good shooter but I think I take too many bank shots. I have a hard time swooshing the ball, for whatever reason, and I even do this when shooting threes. Any ideas?


Joe Haefner says:
1/30/2011 at 10:40:59 AM

Jeff, maybe more arc?


Nick says:
2/5/2011 at 2:21:08 PM

When I shoot, i dont get much arc. i can hit jumpers, but more in-game than in practice. When i try to add more arc (jump higher and more flick of the wrist), i sometimes shoot too hard. How can i find an equality of good arc and good power?


Paul says:
3/13/2011 at 9:36:48 PM

Hey John, I am 13 and I play post. I also am a very good shooter. But I have problems when I get out to about 17-20 feet. I used to have a shot where I took a step with my right foot before I shot and this helped me get most of my power. Now since I have corrected this problem I can't shoot a 16-20 foot jumper unless I push the ball with my shooting arm. Should I stop shooting those shots? Also my left foot always turns to the left on my free throws could you help with this also?


mason says:
3/14/2011 at 9:10:41 PM

i am pretty good its just im a left and people say i shoot weird any tips?


lululemoss says:
4/2/2011 at 8:17:03 PM

Hi Joe
I play basketball for my highschool team. But i have a big problem in my shot. I had a tornado shot. The spin is sideways... I have no idea how to fix this. It really bothers me, and i am willing to puts lots of time in to fixing it but donw know how. Any suggestions?


Bridget says:
6/27/2011 at 10:31:49 AM

Wow. I have been having problems with using my guide hand too much but didn't know how to fix it. Now I can see that my thumb is just sticking out to much. I need to just keep my thumb next to my finger. Hopefully it will correct my backspin and make my shot more consistent too. Thank you so much!


Mario says:
6/29/2011 at 6:39:39 PM

I play for my high school team and I can shoot light out from midrange, but then I get too the three-point line and all my shots are short or drift left or right. What should I do.


benjamin says:
7/28/2011 at 8:17:06 AM

thanks man,this really help my shot,i had a habit of always fading back when i shot,but your tips really helped


Renee says:
8/10/2011 at 4:00:14 AM

Hey im a 14 year old sophomore and my shot is not really consistent yet. it seems when i shoot a freethrow i turn my shoulder and it usually ends up on the left side. & when i shoot some day it goes in & some days it does not is it because of my awkardly body movements or what? ive tried changing my stance by standing wider of jumping forward and this still doesnt make it consistent would a shooting sleeve work?


Jeff Haefner says:
8/10/2011 at 8:14:58 AM

Renee - Without watching you shoot it''s impossible to say for sure what the problem is. But it sounds like it might be your stance. If your body twists when you shoot that makes me think it''s not starting out right (at your feet). Move your feet so they are comfortable (shoulder width apart), shooting foot ahead of non shooting foot, in a comfortable staggered stance (sort of like a boxer). Maybe your feet need to be pointing in a slightly different direction so your body doesn''t twist. Shooting with your toes pointing directly towards the basket is not a natural position (unless you are a two-handed shooters from the 1950s). And remember you''ll never make all your shots and there is no such things as perfect form. Once you get comfortable form you never want to change it -- you need to develop rhythm and feel with lots of reps.


Renee says:
8/10/2011 at 1:08:48 PM

so your saying to have my feet not pointed straight at the basket maybe to have them point inward. & would you recommend a shooing sleeve?


Jeff Haefner says:
8/10/2011 at 1:41:01 PM

Yes, just make sure your feet feel comfortable when you shoot. It should be a natural position. No I do not recommend shooting sleeves or any devices like that.


Renee says:
8/10/2011 at 4:22:13 PM

okay & shouuld the ball be over my head when i pull it back or right in front


Jeff Haefner says:
8/12/2011 at 7:51:23 AM

You want it to be comfortable. But from a technique stand point, you should not be pulling the ball back and/or over your head.


Renee says:
8/12/2011 at 8:50:08 PM

ok & on freethrows when i shoot i now use this routine where i go down low then bring the ball up to shoot because when i stood up my shoulder would twist and the ball would end up on the left side. after i made this change my percentage is alot better is this a good thing to do?


Jeff Haefner says:
8/13/2011 at 8:07:45 AM

Yes, it sounds good.


Vasu says:
8/17/2011 at 6:43:19 AM

whenever i shoot my ball is flat and and has no arc and my form of shooting is good as well?


Brandon says:
8/17/2011 at 9:09:26 PM

Your tips are def right on!! have a question.. I play small college ball, I started trying to develop a jump shot my tenth grade year, in doing so i believe i''''''''ve picked up some bad habits that seem near to impossible to fix. I''''''''ve filmed my shot and i noticed i have a hitch, in which i bring the ball up, however it will dip or move before i release. I may be releasing to late. I have now started back to square one and started on correcting form by shooting jump shots at a wall to help it?
Is this the best way to help it? And how long do you think it would take to see some improvement and some comfort with it? considering i would shoot bout 300 to 500 wall shots a day?


Jeff Haefner says:
8/18/2011 at 9:25:23 AM

Yes. It will probably take 3000-6000 reps doing it the right way. Then after that you slowly will start developing comfort and rhythm. It will take a few months or more depending on how hard you work.


Renee says:
9/30/2011 at 12:47:31 AM

hey i play basketball and been trying to work on my shot and form but when i work on my free throws alot and my forms good then i work on my shot and its bad. i tend to turn my shoulder alot and i dont really have a high release how can i develop them


Byron says:
11/26/2011 at 4:55:29 AM

When I shoot my main arm comes across my body and my legs spread a little. What can I do to stop this. I am also 14 so its not that im not strong enough.
Thanks
Byron


willy says:
12/6/2011 at 2:23:36 PM

i like this is kapo


Ken Sartini says:
12/6/2011 at 3:51:21 PM

As I am reading the posts, there are a lot of different problems here.... two of them being...
1- Consistency
2 Distance
3 Shooting %

As for #`1 Do a lot of form shooting, against a wall will work or from block to block... get comfortable with your shot, be patient with yourself..... IF you have a bad habit, it will take longer to correct it, just keep working on it. Look up BEEF

#2 Distance comes with strength... age means nothing when it comes to shooting... stay in the range where you are successful until your shot is excellent... then you can work your way back slowly. Don't try to go from 15' to the arc... not many people can do that.

#3 Good shooting %s comes from shooting within your range. As soon as you get too far, you will see the % go down. Everyone wants to be a great 3 point shooter or dunk the ball. Be as good as you can be within your own abilities.

Jeff & Joe have given some great information AND advice to you.... so just work on your game... IF need be, ask your coaches or a get a personal trainer.

Bryon,
Without seeing your shot, it sounds like its something to do with your follow through. When you are finishing your shot, make sure you are " putting your hand in the cookie jar "
The basket... and hold it until the ball goes in.
Again, this is something that you can work on against a wall... form shooting holding your follow through.
PERFECT PRACTICE makes perfect... practice without it being correct will just ingrain bad habits. So, you will need 100s to 1,000s of reptitions to correct this... but it can be done... and IF you are a quick learner.. it can be done faster. I helped to correct one of my varsity players by having him shoot the ball off the wall, working on his form. His motivation? I told him that he wouldn't be playing the 4th quarter next year because everyone would foul you because you cant make a free throw..... that was on Friday, on Monday, it was corrected, so you know he worked on it. His problem was too much left hand... so you can do this... how bad do you want to correct the problem?
Look at the pictures at the top, that should give you some idea as to how to finish... good luck.


nick says:
12/24/2011 at 4:42:06 AM

About the guide hand thumb. It seems the thumb can cause problems even when it doesn't shoot the ball. I have been working with a kid who doesn't shoot with his off hand thumb. The problem is he's a right handed shooter, but still somewhat dominant with his left hand as far as dribbling and his grip. So basically he really has a strong grip with his left guide hand when he shoots. I think the solution is taking his guide hand thumb completely off the ball so he doesn't have a death grip. What do you think?


Ken Sartini says:
12/24/2011 at 7:08:25 AM

Nick,

When I had kids that used to much guide hand in their shots I had them do FORM shooting against a wall ... ONE HANDED.

Take one dribble, bring the ball up with your shooting hand and then go into your shot. You can have the guide hand behind the back or on his side... but not anywhere near the ball.

He will have to do 100s / 1000s of shots like this to break that habit..... but as you see him getting better, you can add the guide hand UP but NOT on the ball at all. Keep repeating this until his form is better and his guide hand is just that ... GUIDE hand... not having anything to do with his shot.

.... IF you have a bad habit, it will take longer to correct it, just keep working on it. Look up BEEF also to see if any other part of his shot is lacking - might just as well correct it all.

Let us know how this is going.


jon says:
1/16/2012 at 1:32:31 PM

When shooting,how does the arm extension go? I have good form and my shot is straight and I used leg power but I feel sometimes its my arm extension that causes me to air ball in games. I fully extebd,but what am I supposed to do? Are you supposed to push your arm to extension or contract it more than shoot? I hope this question makes sense


Ken says:
1/16/2012 at 6:18:33 PM

Jon -

Take a look at this and you will see the correct way to shoot, how and where to release the ball and the follow through.

http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/fundamentals/shooting-technique.html

Without seeing your shot, it seems that it is too flat and you are jerking your arm back? Do I have that right?

You should be bringing the ball up and releasing it with your elbow by your eye / ear level. As you bring it up there, you will have a
"window" to see your target. HOLD the follow through until the ball goes into the basket.

I hope this helps.


Free MW3 says:
2/2/2012 at 7:57:19 PM

Awesome! This is going to help me build my basketball skills greatly :)


Peter Sleiman says:
2/10/2012 at 8:39:03 AM

Hello i would like to know if someone aim with his middle finger rather than the index finger what would be the mechanics...?


Ken says:
2/10/2012 at 8:44:46 AM

I would think that by shooting that way, your wrist would be turned inwards a little bit.... and your elbow would be out further.

I for one wouldn't teach that... IF you didn't use your guide hand bringing the ball up I think you would have a hard time keeping the ball on the shooting hand..

You should be able to take one dribble, bring the ball up and raise it to your shot pocket without using the guide hand.... and go into your shot.

Does your shot have backspin or more of a side spin? Its hard to advise you since we cant see your shot...


Junaid john says:
2/17/2012 at 1:06:29 AM

I want the exact placing of fingers on the ball and even the position of guide hand and when to take off guide hand while shooting. Any comments


Junaid john says:
2/17/2012 at 1:08:03 AM

Pls if any 1 can hlp me means email me at junaid_14mj2315@rocketmail.com i'm waiting frnz


Ryan says:
2/17/2012 at 11:30:48 PM

I struggle with consistency in where I bring the ball up to before I shoot. It seems like it''''s different every time. Any ideas?
Thanks


Ken says:
2/18/2012 at 9:30:27 AM

Ryan -

Take a look at this page:
http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/fundamentals/shooting-technique.html

I would suggest that you do a lot of FORM shooting against a wall.... use one hand and that will pretty much force you to bring the ball up properly - keep your guide hand off the ball.

This will take 100s / 1000s of repetitions so be patient with yourself.... you want to develop what we call muscle memory, that means doing the same thing all the time without having to think about it.

Once you feel like you are bringing the ball up the same every time, you can start taking some shorter shots... 6-8 feet... you can work your way back as you get comfortable.


gary says:
2/18/2012 at 9:43:56 PM

Hey i have a question. Im 5"10 and have a wide frame(shoulders, waist...) Which form would be the best for someone with wide shoulders? I try to keep my elbow in front of me but it requires me to turn my hip a bit to turn my shooting arm towards the hoop a bit And isnt comfortable. Should i keep practicing this form or is there another form i should practice with?


Ken says:
2/18/2012 at 10:29:46 PM

Try FORM shooting ... try one dribble, bring the ball up into your shooting pocket,,, that should put the ball in the proper position.... your elbow shouldn't be right in front of you...it should be along side your body.. you will see that after you bring the ball up with one hand..

Do a lot of FORM shooting against a wall... 100s of shots daily to make this come natural.


jamil says:
3/4/2012 at 6:30:38 PM

hey im 15, 6''''3 about to play aau my first year for the georgia stars. theyare supposed to be a really go team so i practice at my house in street (not a busy street dont worry) but i pratice for on average a little over three hours and when i come in either my thighs are really sore or my ankle on my dominant foot really hurts. im wondering if its because i jump off one leg when i practice dunking or should i practice less or something else


Ken says:
3/4/2012 at 6:59:38 PM

Jamil -

When you practice and play on cement thats hard on your legs..... as for all the dunking... work on other parts of your game ... mid range jumpers, ball handling etc. Not sure how your 3 game is but that could be another part... but you have to shoot at least 35% from the arc to make you a decent 3 point shooter...

How many dunks does a player get in a game vs the number of jump shots or takes? That should tell you where to invest your time.

Good luck.


Rodney says:
3/8/2012 at 6:48:45 PM

Hi im 12 and ive been playing basketball since I was 4 . I got a great midshot game I am also a decent 3point shooter. I dribble with both hands well. I layup with right and left.
---So heres the problem
I am on my middle school team but when we do practice games I lack the confidence to shoot ive only shot 6times (5 went in hehe)over the past 5weeks. Anyway to increase my confidence. I think i got all aspects in basketball down anything else i should practice ? like mabye crossing or passes ?
----Additional Info
Im 5foot any ideas what position i would really fit well into?
P.S my basketball hoop fell during a windy day today and the front part is dent upward...sadly anyways to fix this ? Its not majorely dent upward but its noticable and messes up my shot
----Dont worry my form is really good too.


Ken says:
3/8/2012 at 9:19:51 PM

Hi Rodney -

It sounds like you are a pretty good player for a 12 year old.... do yourself a favor, don't over think the game... you said you have a lot of the tools to play the game... and yes, having a good crossover is a big part of the game... always nice to see some guy crossover and "break" his defenders ankles.

Now, the confidence part.... baseball players make millions hitting .250 to .300. You know what that means? It means they are failing 70% of the time... and the are pros, you are 12. Shoot the ball when you have a shot... doesn't mean that you have to search it out... it means that when it comes to you
- STICK IT!!

- I love it, "your form is really good too" ... and you say you lack confidence? LOL

Sorry about your rim...you need to have someone take the rim off the backboard and see if they can fix it. If you have a Mr. Fix It in your area, he might be able to help you...
Good luck with your rim and your game....

Remember, never up, never in. Look up Michael Jordon and see how many shots he missed.


Ken says:
3/8/2012 at 9:20:41 PM

Here is something from MJ, Rodney

Preparation = Confidence
In the book “Driven from Within,” Michael Jordan talks about his crunch time mentality:

If I miss a shot, so what? Maybe even a shot that could have won a game. I can deal with that. If I don’t miss the shot, then I don’t miss it — we win. I can rationalize the fact that there are only two outcomes: You either make it, or you miss it. I could think that way because I knew I had earned the opportunity to take that shot.

I had put in all the work, not only in that particular game, but in practice every day. If I missed then it wasn’t meant to be. That simple. It wasn’t because the effort wasn’t there. It wasn’t because I couldn’t make the shot, because I had taken the same shot many times in every situation. As soon as the ball went up, there weren’t any nerves because I had trained myself for that situation.

I was as prepared as I could possibly be for that moment. I couldn’t go back and practice a little harder. I knew I had done the right things to prepare myself for that situation. One way or another, I knew I was prepared to be successful. Now, if you know you haven’t prepared correctly, or you know you haven’t worked hard enough, that’s when other thoughts and emotions creep into your mind. That’s stress. That’s fear.

It’s the same process for doing anything, anywhere in life no matter how big or small the stage. … If you are confident you have done everything possible to prepare yourself, then there is nothing to fear.

Stress and fear come from lack of preparation. Makes sense. And explains why there are still so many situations that I approach from a place of fear.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m proud of where I am at, and it has come with a lot of hard work… but I know to really get what I want (you know, change the world), I gotta ramp things up considerably. Which is largely what this blog and Immaculata is all about anyway; building the necessary tools to better yourself so that you can make the world better n’ junk.


Cole says:
3/9/2012 at 5:03:08 PM

Hi I'm 14 and I'm having difficulties with my jumper. I shoot 2 handed(sort of, my shot is just not conventional) and I've been told I have a pretty shot but all the good shooters in the nba seem to shoot 1 handed using the other as a guide. I'm not sure if I should switch to 1 handed, and also I've tried shooting 1 handed and I don't have the strength to shoot from deep. So I need advice please. Thanks.


Rodney says:
3/9/2012 at 8:02:10 PM

Yea i do have good form i never developed any bad habits of shooting mistakes (mabye i got lucky i dont know )
I just lack confidence from thinking "what if i miss ? they will laugh at me " and a**hole comments from other people.
Don't get me wrong if im open ill take the shot.
Most kids that are in 6th grade on my team just pass they never take shots even if they are open


Ken says:
3/9/2012 at 9:04:50 PM

Rodney -

Don't think about missing.... be positive.... remember the baseball players?

I just lack confidence from thinking "what if i miss ? they will laugh at me " and a**hole comments from other people.

Anybody that would say that to a 12 year old is jerk!! How about you just make the shot and keep playing with a smile. Who cares what they think? Who are they? D Rose or someone?Keep playing and have FUN!

Do you play against zones or m2m mostly?


Ken says:
3/9/2012 at 9:12:07 PM

Cole -

I don't have the strength to shoot from deep. So I need advice please.

First of all, IF shooting from a certain distance isn't comfortable for you... don't do it... stay in your comfort zone.... thats probably why you are using two hands.

all the good shooters in the nba seem to shoot 1 handed using the other as a guide. I'm not sure if I should switch to 1 handed, and also I've tried shooting 1 handed.

What is your coach saying about your shot? What are your shooting %s?

Now, go to the top of this page and look at the pictures... read the instructions... that is what a shot should look like.

Start with FORM shooting against a wall. (that way you wont worry about missing)
Dribble the ball with one hand, bring it up to the shooting position and then shoot the ball, the release point should have your elbow around your eye/ear area... then hold the follow through. You are going to have to shoot 100s of these shots... after awhile, you can use your other hand as a GUIDE hand... it has NOTHING to do with the shot. Shoot a lot like this too until it becomes what they call
"MUSCLE MEMORY."


Cole says:
3/10/2012 at 8:07:51 AM

My coach likes my shot. I'm an overall shooter especially from deep. I was shooting yesterday. I think the weird thing about my shot is actually not that it's 2 handed but because I'm right handed and it seems to be a left handed shot. Which is odd.


Ken says:
3/10/2012 at 8:11:39 AM

Cole -

That is odd! I have heard of people shooting that way - I forget what they call that... (right eye / left handed dominant?)

Can you describe how you bring the ball up and where you shoot it from?


Cole says:
3/10/2012 at 9:14:36 AM

I bring it up like a normal shot only I switch the ball to my left hand and use my right as a guide. It would seem odd to most but feels very comfortable to me.


Ken says:
3/10/2012 at 10:40:47 AM

Is the ball by your right eye?


Cole says:
3/10/2012 at 6:27:35 PM

Well it was with the right eye, but today I took a few hours and just tried to shoot 1 handed with my right hand. After awhile, I finally got it down and was able to shoot from deep a lot better.


Rodney says:
3/10/2012 at 6:35:56 PM

we play man to man mostly
EDIT: Any tips to defend yourself from getting crossed ?


Ken says:
3/10/2012 at 8:16:39 PM

Cole -

That had to be at tough shot... left hand by the right eye - no wonder you were having some problems.... I'm glad that 1 handed shot is helping you.... that forces you to shoot the ball properly. Keep working on the shot and let us know how it goes.

Rodney -

Keep a good low balance, don't reach and try to direct the player to the sideline. When you reach, your feet stop and you play good defense with your feet.


Jason says:
3/14/2012 at 2:34:05 PM

Thanks a lot this really helped, I had the first problem and first thing tomorrow I'm gonna go out and sort it!


Cole says:
3/14/2012 at 6:52:57 PM

Update: Well it's been a struggle changing my shot... It made me extremely frustrated because I can't get enough arc on the ball or even make it to the rim from 3... At least not consistently. My old shot was natural and I was very comfortable with it. And even though it would seem tough on paper it had great arc and spin and I was a great shooter. I need to be able to shoot consistently from deep because of my height primarily.


Ken says:
3/15/2012 at 9:02:30 AM

Cole -

I wish we could see your shot... it would be a lot easier for us to comment on it... if you could post a short video it might help us.

As coaches we look at shooters... left handers shoot from the left side, eye/ear - right handers from the right side, eye/ear.

I would hate to think that the things I am telling you would hurt your shot and make things worse for you... and I sure don't want to frustrate you

Everything I am telling you is what / how we taught our shooters so it is in good conscience that I've been saying this to you. AND, IF you look at the top of the page its pretty much what they are telling shooters.

If worse comes to worse, do what is comfortable for you... but you came to us for help.... as for being short on deep shots (3s) my advice would be to get your legs into the shots more.

Keep us updated and good luck.


Ken says:
3/15/2012 at 11:50:45 AM

Cole -

This is what I taught and firmly believe in .. take a look at these videos.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfTxHGOQdEc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SC6xGbsAPjs&feature=related

Watch these kids shoot, the first one, that boy is 14 like you, his form is great... and IF you have bad habits it will take awhile to change them... but if you are serious about shooting, maybe you will think its worth while.

Either way, let us know what you are going to do and the results.

We had a guy come in and hold a couple of shooting clinics at our school and another one in our area... he RARELY MISSED.. seriously... 1 miss in a two hour clinic.

His name was George Lehmann - he taught the BEEF method.
B- Balanc
E- Eye on the target
E- Elbow under the ball AND
F- Follow through.


brandon chavez says:
3/21/2012 at 11:25:56 PM

Yea I'm 15 years old and I'm having trouble with shooting and dribbling, I'm left handed and I try to look up different techniques but I just can't find anything....
Can you help me?


Ken says:
3/22/2012 at 7:10:48 AM

Brandon -

First of all, describe your shot and your problem to us and we will have a better idea as to how to help you.


This is what I taught and firmly believe in .. take a look at these videos.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfTxHGOQdEc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SC6xGbsAPjs&feature=related

As for dribbling.... that just takes a lot of practice ... you have to be willing to spend a lot of time on this....


Ken says:
3/22/2012 at 7:12:01 AM

There are a lot of dribbling drills on this page -

http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/drills/basketball-drills-players.html#ballhandlingdrills


Brayden says:
3/24/2012 at 9:16:38 PM

Hello,
I am a very good shooter with very good form, but I struggle with getting shots off. Are there any tips you can help me with?


Ken says:
3/25/2012 at 8:07:17 AM

Brayden -

Moving without the ball to get yourself open is one good way of being able to get a good shot off. Another way is to be able to shoot off the dribble. Having a teammate screen for you so that when you come off the screen you can be shot ready.

Can you be a little more specific about not being able to get a shot off? How are they guarding you? Zone or m2m? Does your height have anything to do with it?

Do you play for a school team where there is an offense to work with?


Brayden says:
3/25/2012 at 9:48:55 AM

Yes I play for a school team. I’m 5’3 so for a seventh grader my height isn''t really a problem. We mainly play teams with a zone defense. I play at a 2 or 3 guard so I mainly get passed to on the wing. My problem is making good moves to get open, so I can get good shots off.


Ken says:
3/25/2012 at 10:40:15 AM

Brayden -

Ok, I have a better picture of this now..... had a college coach say this to me once about playing vs zones.... " Put em where they aint "

I don't know what type of offense your coach is running for your team... but whether its ball movement or player movement or both.... you need to end up in a passing lane.

You can make V cuts to help yourself get open too..... set the defenders up by making a movement in one direction and then cutting back to the open area...... you would want to meet the pass to step into your shot, if its not there, get it to the open player.... look into the post too, then re spot yourself to an open area.

Does this help?

A passing lane is where you can see the player with the ball without a defender between you.


Isabella says:
4/4/2012 at 7:43:03 PM

Hey,
Im a 15 year old girl that is a high school player now.Well im having a problem with learning new moves.The only thing I really need help on is learning how to shoot over the big people...I have strength well a little to much strength and im just having trouble with the big players.You see im like 5'6" or something around there I was a 8th grader when while I started for a high school team.You see my coach in Jr.High didnt really know how to teach a post player.I have tried moves to be able to play against really tall people but they just never really work out the way I want them to.

Thanks,
Isabella


Ken says:
4/9/2012 at 7:41:30 AM

Take a look at this page - then pick out a couple of moves to work on this summer.... maybe two moves with a counter for each one?

http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/fundamentals/postplay.html

I know that I saw a move from Don Kelbick online somewhere... it was a drop step to the basket... the counter was to fake the drop step and then step back for a jumper. Maybe Jeff & Joe know where that's at??


Joe Haefner says:
4/9/2012 at 8:38:39 AM

Drop Step:
http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/drills/drop-step.html

Drop Step Counter:
http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/drills/Drop-Step-Counter.html


guest says:
4/16/2012 at 8:50:19 PM

i am 13 and i have a problem with 2 hand shooting that i developed at a early age....what do u suggest i do to prevent this problem and become a normal shooter?


Ken says:
4/17/2012 at 8:44:08 AM

The firs thing you need to do is to work on your form so that your shot becomes automatic... we call that MUSCLE MEMORY.

Start by standing by a wall and then WITH ONE HAND... take one dribble, bring the ball up and go into your shot against the wall. ( not using your guide hand at all ) this is going to take 100s / 1,000s of shots to change your bad habit so be patient with yourself.

This is what I taught and firmly believe in .. take a look at these videos.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfTxHGOQdEc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SC6xGbsAPjs&feature=related

Watch these kids shoot, the first one, that boy is 14 like you, his form is great... and IF you have bad habits it will take awhile to change them... but if you are serious about shooting, maybe you will think its worth while.

Either way, let us know what you are going to do and the results.

We had a guy come in and hold a couple of shooting clinics at our school and another one in our area... he RARELY MISSED.. seriously... 1 miss in a two hour clinic.

His name was George Lehmann - he taught the BEEF method.
B- Balanc
E- Eye on the target
E- Elbow under the ball AND
F- Follow through.

Let us know how this is going and your thoughts on what you read here along with the pictures at the top of the page.. the beginning of the article.


Guest says:
4/18/2012 at 10:01:08 AM

thank you very much...i will continue to work on these methods as i am very serious about shooting, thank you


Ken says:
4/18/2012 at 1:00:38 PM

Let us know how it goes and IF you have any difficulties along the way.... we will try and help you through them.

Try to find a partner to work with, you will get more shots in and have more FUN along the way. :-)


Earvin says:
4/22/2012 at 11:16:30 PM

i'm 12 and i have problems when shooting the ball a lot of times the ball does not even hit the rim any tips on how to increase the power


Ken says:
4/23/2012 at 7:27:24 AM

Earvin -

Without seeing your shot, my best guess would be that you need to get your legs into your shot more.

Question - WHERE are you shooting the ball from? Stay in your range where you have success until you are making a good % of your shots and ONLY then do you go back a couple of feet.

How is your form? Take a look at this and then make sure you form is good, until it becomes muscle memory/automatic.

The first thing you need to do is to work on your form so that your shot becomes automatic... we call that MUSCLE MEMORY.

Start by standing by a wall and then WITH ONE HAND... take one dribble, bring the ball up and go into your shot against the wall. ( not using your guide hand at all ) this is going to take 100s / 1,000s of shots to change your bad habit so be patient with yourself.

This is what I taught and firmly believe in .. take a look at these videos.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfTxHGOQdEc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SC6xGbsAPjs&feature=related

Watch these kids shoot, the first one, that boy is 14 like you, his form is great... and IF you have bad habits it will take awhile to change them... but if you are serious about shooting, maybe you will think its worth while.

Either way, let us know things are going and the results.


Monzer says:
4/25/2012 at 7:34:50 PM

Hi Joe
just one little question that i couldn't really find any answers around for.. How CLOSE is the elbow supposed to be to the body (on the shooting hand ofcourse) when im squaring up and going up for a shot. I'm asking because not everyone has the same technique or distance. I have to be honest, i used to be a VERY consistent shooter but i have been struggling for the past 2 months or so, and im breaking down my shot entirely to perfect it, from the distance between my feet, to the shape of my fingers on both hands on the ball. actually one more question! heh...can shooting TOO much one night before a game the next day be bad for you? like 2 hours of shooting the night before a game? Thank you =)


Ken says:
4/25/2012 at 8:36:00 PM

Monzer -

Everybody shoots a little differently... I would say, find the way that is comfortable for you where you can be successful..

Try taking one dribble and bring the ball up with the shooting hand only...that should put your elbow in a good position to go on with your shot.

I just saw a young man that played for me years ago and his son who is 9 shoots lights out. As HE brings the ball up his elbow is pretty far out... but as he goes into his shot he brings it in for pretty good form... and he can SHOOT IT!

As for shooting before a game... as long as you are doing everything RIGHT - form wise.. then that practice should make you a better shooter. I think it was Larry Bird who was the last one out of the gym after practices. As for me its not the number of shots, its about the quality of the shots you are taking... game speed / great form / good footwork.

I hope this helps you a little bit.... and please, try not to over think the game and your shots.... all that questioning will just drive you nuts and mess with your shot and mind.

IF you can get someone to feed you.... shoot 1,000 free throws a day using 2 balls. Shoot 10 at a time, take a breath and then shoot 10 more. Your partner feeds you the ball right after you shoot the first one and keep that going. As long as your form is good, that should help your shot a lot.


Monzer says:
4/25/2012 at 11:42:01 PM

thank you, that is great advice! will do that first thing in the morning..it's the mental aspect that gets in the way, and no matter what i do i cant get around it...as far back as i remember, in my best games and my most scoring games i didn't think about the shots at all..they just..HAPPENED! the form came out perfect, the release was perfect, legs and jump were perfect..but now no matter WHAT i do, i can hear myself narrate what im doing and what im GOING to do in a shot. is there anyway that i and other shooters out there can "turn off" our brains and just let it be second nature?
Thank you so much Coach


Ken says:
4/26/2012 at 8:39:24 AM

Monzer -

You're welcome... so stop thinking so much and just play, don't be so hard on yourself... its supposed to be a game, HAVE FUN.

I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.
Michael Jordon

Do you think MJ worried about missing? I doubt it.... he just played... which is what all players should do... just play.

To all players .... work on your form so your shot is automatic... MUSCLE MEMORY will take over in games, you wont have to think do this or do that... it will just happen. IF You have to think should I shoot or not, I would say DON'T SHOOT it... let the shots come to you... and you can still create some for yourself. Work hard at getting open, setting some good screens for other players... good screeners are usually open themselves after setting a good one.

RELAX and play the GAME.. I was not a player by any means since I was a late bloomer, but when I finally got a jumper, I shot pretty well UNLESS I thought about it... then I missed... so quit thinking and play.

In games, I told my players that IF they were struggling with their shot, get yourself to the free throw line where you can take a couple of practice shots without the ball and concentrate on your form. That helped them.


Joe Haefner says:
4/26/2012 at 6:57:59 PM

Monzer, it looks like Coach Sar took care of you. Just to add to what he said about shooting while comfortable. Here are some of my shots on perfect shooting form:

http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/blog/index.php/what-is-perfect-basketall-shooting-form/


Monzer says:
4/28/2012 at 6:15:41 PM

Just came back from practice and a game as well. I did your exercises and followed your advice about the elbow and the "one dribble, one handed shot" etc. I have to be honest the first few shots i felt like i was uncomfortable and "tried too hard" but then, poof! it all disappeared! i was swooshing 6-8 shots in a row comfortably, and farther than my usual range as well. The moment i scored the first one i just paused, recorded, and pressed play everytime i got the ball. Now when we players get a couple of nights like this, how do we keep it?!
I'm sorry, you're probably feeling like you could write an entire book only off my questions, it's just hard to find someone who gives efficient advice


Ken says:
4/28/2012 at 7:53:37 PM

Monzer -

"I'm sorry, you're probably feeling like you could write an entire book only off my questions, it's just hard to find someone who gives efficient advice "
EFFICIENT ?? LOL I'm just glad that I can give you some advice that helps and you are trying it to make it work for you.

I had a father of a 7th grade player that questioned my record after I was trying to get his son to shoot this way, he was shooting with both hands. He asked me what my record was - I told him that it depended on what year - when I had shooters we won a lot, when I didn't - we lost a lot, very simple, shooters make the team.


Now when we players get a couple of nights like this, how do we keep it?!

Perfect practice makes perfect! Keep working on the one handed shot every time you go out to practice... " Muscle Memory" remember?
Start your workout in the range where you are successful before you start to move back.

Believe in yourselves, don't over think the game OR your SHOT. If you struggle a little bit, get yourself to the free throw line so you can work on your stroke. Don't worry about asking questions, thats what we are here for.

There was one young boy that we posted about 300 times a year ago... so you are way behind. LOL

Keep working oin your game and I hope your shot gets better - let us know. Bythe way, don;t forget, everybody has off nights. Don't let that stop you from shooting.


azhar says:
5/12/2012 at 5:08:18 AM

thanxx first of all for giving me such tips real useful but the only problem is that my elbow goes little out like ray allen not very much but little out so question is is it normal or still i have to make my elbow perpendicular to ball ? and all fundamentals goes correct just like shooting at the top of jump ,flicking wrist so getting nice backspin .and now my second question i cant shoot long rangers how to get that power to get all fundamentals and long range shot .
REGARDS :)


Ken says:
5/12/2012 at 9:08:34 AM

Azhar -

I saw an X player of mine that could really shoot the ball... his son in 9 and he STARTS his shot with his elbow pretty far out... but as he goes into the shot, his elbow comes under the ball. If I were you I wouldn't be too concerned about it being out a little bit IF you are having success with your shot.

Try this, take one dribble and bring the ball up to your shooting position - do this with ONE HAND.. no guide hand and you will see that your elbow is NOT directly under the ball... it will be pretty close, You have to be comfortable with your shot.

As for long range shots, it sounds like you need to get more power from your legs, that should help you get the range you want. First of all, work from close in and work your way back, that way you will keep your form correct..... If you get to a certain point that you are not making many shots, its time to step back in a couple of feet and work on your shot.

IF you are a right handed shooter you can try planting your left foot and exploding off of it. That should give you more power.

I hope some of this helps.


BIG MAN says:
5/13/2012 at 5:25:37 PM

I am very good when people put presure on me in a game, and im 13, and have a very consistant hook shot, and i am a good paint shooter, and make on average a 93% freethrow average a year, and i dont worry about 3's much but when i do it usually banks in, but i am 5'11 and a center for my team but i dont use my thumb much but when i do i always make it and i am a very consistant shooter. My shot is very much like Marc Gasol and i have moves that are exactly like his but please give me any tips that will help. Thanks.


Ken says:
5/13/2012 at 5:38:00 PM

BIG MAN -

It sounds like you have a pretty good shot, shooting 93% from the FT line... thats great!

The only advice I would give you is to work on the rest of your game... the center of today might be the point guard of tomorrow.

Work on your ball handling and passing. Now is a good time to work on your mid range shooting 15-16 footers..... as you perfect this part of your game I would think shooting 3s will become easier.

So, do you CALL GLASS when you bank those 3s? :-) LOL

Seriously, work on your all around game, become a complete player.... and GOOD LUCK


BIG MAN says:
5/13/2012 at 5:42:15 PM

Thanks Ken ill work on it and haha call glass funny..... but for real thanks ill work on it and i usually score 15.3 points a game in the regular season but thanks for the tips.


Ken says:
5/13/2012 at 6:53:31 PM

Let us know how its going and if you have any other questions.


Dalt says:
6/2/2012 at 6:31:41 PM

My shoot is Kind of inconsistant some days ill make every shot i put up others ill miss all, im wondering im righty but i shoot left handed, as in i flick my left hand , but my set point is near the back of my head, can you tell me what im doing wrong, i also shoot with right foot forward..

thanks


Ken says:
6/2/2012 at 7:10:08 PM

Dalt -

It sounds like you have a lot of things going on here that are not correct. Look at the top of this page and walk yourself through your shot.

I wrote this for someone else but it fits your problem. Think about your stance... and what you are doing with your left hand... it sounds like you are using it with your shot.
The off hand is the GUIDE hand, it has nothing to do with the shot.


The first thing you need to do is to work on your form so that your shot becomes automatic... we call that MUSCLE MEMORY.

Start by standing by a wall and then WITH ONE HAND... take one dribble, bring the ball up and go into your shot against the wall. ( not using your guide hand at all ) this is going to take 100s / 1,000s of shots to change your bad habit so be patient with yourself.

This is what I taught and firmly believe in .. take a look at these videos.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfTxHGOQdEc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SC6xGbsAPjs&feature=related

Watch these kids shoot, the first one, that boy is 14 like you, his form is great... and IF you have bad habits it will take awhile to change them... but if you are serious about shooting, maybe you will think its worth while.

Either way, let us know what you are going to do and the results.

We had a guy come in and hold a couple of shooting clinics at our school and another one in our area... he RARELY MISSED.. seriously... 1 miss in a two hour clinic.

His name was George Lehmann - he taught the BEEF method.
B- Balanc
E- Eye on the target
E- Elbow under the ball AND
F- Follow through.

Let us know how this is going and your thoughts on what you read here along with the pictures at the top of the page.. the beginning of the article.




--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Js24 says:
6/14/2012 at 9:40:44 PM

These are really good tips but i have a question. Im a sophomore at my high school playing jv at either shooting guard or small forward occasionally . Im 5''7 and 15yrs old. What i need help with is my release . When i shoot the ball it seems like im releasing from my wrist and not using my legs to elevate. When i shoot also it seems like my follow through hand is really high up in the air. And that my shot has a high arc to it. Another problem i have is my confidence level. I use to be a fantastic player when i was little but now it seems i cant even get a shot off without worrying if im going to miss the shot or get blocked. Are there any drills or tips you can give me to help fix my shot and confidence?


Ken says:
6/15/2012 at 9:45:39 AM

Js -

As for your confidence - STOP thinking about failure so much.... that is a recipe for disaster.
Do you really think that good shooters worry about missing. Look up what Michael Jordan had to say about how many shots he missed in his career.
You aren't a little guy any more and the game has stepped up for you. Players are bigger, stronger and quicker... and so are you.

Its hard to see exaclty what is wrong with your shot since we cant see it, but...
Why don't you try doing some FORM shooting against the wall. As you release the ball, your elbow should be around your eye/ear area. Your guide hand should be along side the ball. Go from shooting against the wall to close shooting... block to block... you should end up on your toes. Then you can move back a little as you see success and your form is correct.

Look at this video, this boy is 14

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfTxHGOQdEc


azhar says:
6/24/2012 at 1:46:44 PM

is it necessary to put elbow in i mean many of shooters never put their elbow in or mine is little bit like kobe bryant , and second question how to use leg power while shooting 3s


Ken says:
6/24/2012 at 2:03:14 PM

I have seen some players start with their elbow out a little bit, BUT, as they go into their shot the elbow comes in so that you finish with your arm in a straight line.

Even IF you bring the ball up with one hand, you will see that your elbow is out slightly.

As for using your legs.... you should be catching the ball with your knees bent a little bit
(triple threat position) and as you plant your inside pivot foot you can push off your other foot and gain some power.

Try this from a shorter distance, like the FT line and work your way back, then let us know how this is working for you.


Ryan says:
6/29/2012 at 12:36:54 AM

Hey guys, do you think it's possible to take the assist hand off too early? I feel like this happens to me sometimes and I lose balance on my shot and leave it short, or I lose balance and it goes off to the side.
Thanks


Ken says:
6/29/2012 at 8:05:18 AM

Why don't you start this way Ryan -

The first thing you need to do is to work on your form so that your shot becomes automatic... we call that MUSCLE MEMORY.

I tell a lot of shooter this -

Start by standing by a wall and then WITH ONE HAND... take one dribble, bring the ball up and go into your shot against the wall. ( not using your guide hand at all ) this is going to take 100s / 1,000s of shots to change your bad habit so be patient with yourself.

Maybe in your case you can start by using your guide hand - then go to the basket going from block / middle and block until you are sure you are using your guide hand correctly. As you are successful you can start moving back a few feet at a time.

This is what I taught and firmly believe in .. take a look at these videos.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfTxHGOQdEc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SC6xGbsAPjs&feature=related

Watch these kids shoot, the first one, that boy is 14 like you, his form is great... and IF you have bad habits it will take awhile to change them... but if you are serious about shooting, maybe you will think its worth while.

Either way, let us know what you are going to do and the results.

We had a guy come in and hold a couple of shooting clinics at our school and another one in our area... he RARELY MISSED.. seriously... 1 miss in a two hour clinic.

His name was George Lehmann - he taught the BEEF method.
B- Balanc
E- Eye on the target
E- Elbow under the ball AND
F- Follow through.

Let us know how this is going and your thoughts on what you read here along with the pictures at the top of the page.. the beginning of the article.


Joe Haefner says:
6/29/2012 at 9:10:52 AM

Absolutely, Ryan. I believe by pulling the assist hand off too early, it can cause your shoulders to twist. This will do exactly what you describe. It will take away the momentum you created and the ball will fall short. It will also cause the ball to miss left and right due to the twisting action of your shoulders.

Just like you hold the follow through on your shooting hand, you should hold your guide hand up as well.

Look at the 6th picture from the top. That should be the position of your guide hand after the shot.


Michael says:
7/1/2012 at 9:12:40 PM

I'm 14 and I just realized today I was shooting with my guide hand's thumb lol. I tried the thumb to index finger thing and it was airball city at first but I started getting it and making jumpers more consistently. Shooting 3s is way harder too now like Ryan said but I started making a few after getting the form down.


Michael says:
7/1/2012 at 9:15:36 PM

Oops it wasn't ryan who said it, it was someone else. Thanks for the thumb tip guys :)


Ken says:
7/2/2012 at 11:43:27 AM

Michael -

Keep working on your form until it becomes automatic... what we call muscle memory.

I told my guys to keep the guide hand thumb pointed to their forehead.... so look at that Joe said, look at mine, then use the one that works best for you.

Patience is the KEY here, as you make changes in your game and shot, it will take a little time to get comfortable with it .... but you WILL become a better shooter if you stay with it.


Ken says:
7/2/2012 at 12:05:50 PM

Michael -

Let me clarify my last statement... about the thumb....

as you are bringing the ball up, the thumb should be pointing at your ear, then your forehead - meaning that your thumb is pointed straight back as you are going into your shot - as you are releasing the ball, your thumb will be pointed up a little bit

Try this without a ball at first and see which one you are most comfortable with You can work on your form just standing without a ball - you should be able to correct your thumb problem that way.

Hope I didn't mess you up.
Good luck


Michael says:
7/3/2012 at 9:40:17 PM

During shooting around my form is automatic and I'm shooting without the thumb. I played a few games today and my habit of shooting with the thumb came back with a few shots. During shooting around after the games I was missing many of my shots but I wasn't using my thumb. They were going to the left mostly or they fell short. What am I doing that's making them go to the left?


Joe Haefner says:
7/4/2012 at 9:52:16 AM

Michael, are you twisting your shoulders? Are you holding your follow through - both shooting hand and guide hand?

my advice would be to see a shooting coach. Through writing, we'll never be able to properly diagnose your shot.


Ken says:
7/4/2012 at 12:02:11 PM

I agree Joe -

Since we cant see your shot and see exactly what you are doing its hard to go any further with this.

Good luck Michael and find someone who can watch you shoot that understands the proper mechanics of shooting. He should be able to help you right away.

It WILL take some time to correct the bad habits so be patient.


Isaias Pereyra says:
7/11/2012 at 3:12:32 AM

I fell like when put the ball on my palm and follow through with my fingertips I have rotation put also fell like I'm pushing the ball, I'm very good high school point guard but my shoot needs to improve any tips please.


Ken says:
7/11/2012 at 8:46:30 AM

Take a look at this video and look at the pictures and explanations at the top of the page. It should give you a clear explanation of the shooting process.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfTxHGOQdEc

You might try some FORM shooting against a wall until you correct your problem. Its hard to correct something when you cant see you shooting the ball.... one question I will ask is - where is your elbow when you are releasing the ball? It should be around your eye/ear area.


matt says:
7/22/2012 at 3:53:36 PM

hi i have the same looking shot as mistake 4. Ive been working on correcting my shot but i was just wondering what you meant by flinging the wrist. does that mean i have my wrist back to much? Also if you have any more advice about correcting the mistake that would be nice. Thanks


Ken says:
7/22/2012 at 9:34:04 PM

Matt-

IF you are shooing like #4 then you have your hand/ball too far back. Does it feel a little awkward to you? Just doing it without a ball feels funny to me...

Try bringing the ball up with one hand up to the shooting pocket - that should give you a good idea as to where it should be.

Let us know how that works for you.

How do you fix it?

Move the ball forward so that when you bring it straight down, the back of your shooting hand grazes your forehead. Practice shooting to yourself from this position until it becomes your new set point.

You should reinforce your new set point by daily form shooting close to the basket. In fact, you should rebuild your shot slowly by stepping back one step at a time as you establish consistency from a given range, using the new set point.


Rio says:
7/24/2012 at 8:28:20 AM

I've been having trouble trying to fix the problem of using my guide hand thumb.
I've finally got back to the level where I can knock down my mid range jumpers but whenever I go onto my 3s, my habits just sink back in especially during pickup games.

What should I do? Stop shooting 3s?


Ken says:
7/24/2012 at 8:36:43 AM

Rio -

One thought could be that threes are still a little out of your range so you use your guide hand to get the distance?

If I were you I would go back to the mid range jumpers where your form is perfect..... and you are shooting with a good %.

Then you can step back a couple of feet and shoot a few hundred - KEEPING the correct form and are successful.

Don't move back any further until you have that down.... then you can move back another couple of feet, keep repeating this until you reach the distance you want to shoot from.... but don't jump from the mid range to threes and ruin your technique/form.

This will probably take some time to perfect, so be patient with yourself - you have several months before your season starts again. (unless you are playing AAU ball)
Regardless, stay within your range in games until you get that shot down in practice.


Rebecca says:
8/6/2012 at 5:08:40 PM

I have the problem that I put waaaay to much arc into my shot. I have always done this and it makes is somewhat easier when far away but a lot of the time i hit the bar holding up the rim or it bounces out. I have had many people look at my shooting form but I haven't had anyone tell me that I'm doing anything wrong and no one can tell me why I do it.
Would there be a certain reason that I put too much arc into my shot? Is there away to fix it? I don't know why I do it but I have been doing it since I was like 8.


Daniel Rivera says:
8/7/2012 at 1:40:40 AM

Hey there. Well I'm 16 years old and I've really only been playing for about 2 years organized. My shot has changed so much. But how I have noticed that I do use my off hands thumb to shoot because a friend pointed it out. However I don't find this to be a problem at all I practice everyday and my shot is very good. I'd say college level good. But all I'm saying is that some people are able to shoot more effectively this way though it's not the proper way to shoot the basketball


Ken says:
8/7/2012 at 7:27:47 AM

Dan 0

While I wouldn't teach that I had some kids who's shot was anything but perfect form wise. Their shooting % was darn good and I wasn't about to change them.... one had side spin and the other kid shot like a sling shot. If it aint broke, don't fix it.

I would just ask you this question, as you move up levels - Varsity / College, is your shot still going to be effective? If NOT, then its time to correct it.

Since we cant see your shot, we can only guess that you are doing something right... back spin? On target all the time? Soft touch? I wonder what would happen IF you had a shooting coach work with you?

Good luck


Amid says:
8/8/2012 at 7:13:45 PM

i dont really understand tip 1 although this is the mistake I have can you explain further on what part of the thumb the ball should rest? Thank you for the article and feedback


Ken says:
8/12/2012 at 3:50:51 PM

Rebecca -

Maybe you can correct this by doing some FORM shooting.... Start close to the basket... go from one block, to the middle and then the othe block. Shooting this close will help you to get the proper arc as you are looking for a SWISH every time. Shoot 5-5-5 and then start over again... do this three times.... that will be 45 shots.

Then work your way back a little bit.... same spots but from 6-8 feet out..... 5-5-5 again. Don't go any further back until you get the arc straightened out.

Amid - try bringing the ball up with just your shooting hand and stop when you get to the shooting pocket. The ball should set comfortably in your shooting hand in the proper position. Try this and let us know how that goes.


Elijah says:
11/10/2012 at 2:57:11 PM

This is the best article i have seen in my life i could never find a way to get my thumb out of my shot thank u so much u dont understand how much this helps me out THANK U


Kevin says:
11/27/2012 at 11:41:14 PM

I am having problems with my jumpshot. I used to be a very consistent shooter about a year or two ago, since then i have broken my left wrist twice(Im right handed) and worked on other areas of my game. Now i am a lot less consistent and tend to drive more. Also, my jump shot changes all of the time now. Do you have any tips or advice that I could use?


Nick says:
11/27/2012 at 11:59:57 PM

My jumpshot has recently been declining. I can never find a comfortable form. My problem is the JUMPing part of the jumpshot. I shoot over 90% from the freethrow line but when I add a jump into my shot the ball flies every which way and is very un predictable. I need to understand how to bring my hands up when going up for a shot, and when to release. I would greatly appreciate some tips and possible some drills I could do to fix this. I''m in 8th grade (14, 6''2 ) and my highschool coach is looking for me to play varsity as freshman. I have about 10 months to correct my shot. HELP.


Ken says:
11/28/2012 at 8:02:33 AM

Nick -

IF you can shoot over 90% from the free throw line, it seems to me that you have good form.

Not being able to see your shot, I can only guess a bit... When you are shooting your jump shots, are you coming back down in the same spot (or slightly forward) from where you take off, or are you fading to one side or another?? Wherever your body goes, the ball will follow.... unless you are really good at keeping your elbow under the ball and have a great follow through.

Why don't you and your dad go over to the high school and talk to this coach. Let him SEE your shot and make some suggestions to you. Its a lot easier to correct things when you can see them. By the way, DON'T change anything you do from the free throw line. :-)

Take a look at #3 at the beginning of the article....that might be your problem... and then look at this video to work on your shot.

http://www.coachwissel.com/index.php/videos/shooting-off-catch/catch-and-shoot-drills/111-catch-from-inside-out

Let us know how this works for you...


Ken says:
11/28/2012 at 8:12:36 AM

Kevin -

Repetitions are the keys to correcting problems... There is nothing wrong with taking the ball to the basket..... that should get you to the free throw line more... and then you can check your form out. What is your shooting % from the free throw line?

How is your form? Can you describe what is happening to you as you are shooting your jumpshots?

Take a look at this video and it will give you an idea as to how work on your jumper.

http://www.coachwissel.com/index.php/videos/shooting-off-catch/catch-and-shoot-drills/111-catch-from-inside-out

Patience and repetitons will help you correct your shot providing your form/mechanics are correct. Then it will take 100s to 1000s of shots to make it automatic.

Nick - one last comment, you can shoot free throws for me anytime.


Kevin says:
11/28/2012 at 3:52:23 PM

My free throw percentage is roughly about 80%. It is not as good as it used to be, before all the injuries, but now it seems that my jumpshot is way better about 4 feet behind the three point line. My mid range jumper just feels so wrong. I use the same jumpshot but I seem to make more leaning or fadeaways. I'm only 15 so I will only get better.


Ken says:
11/28/2012 at 9:20:26 PM

Kevin -

F/T % around 80%?? Thats darn good for anyone let alone someone 15. You can shoot F/Ts for me anytime also.

4 feet behind the arc? Are you making those shots and if so, what is the % there?

Look at that video and then work on your shot starting from the free throw line or 15'.... then work your way out, Have some patience with yourself.... Like you said, "You are only 15, you will get better."

Take a look at this video and it will give you an idea as to how work on your jumper.

http://www.coachwissel.com/index.php/videos/shooting-off-catch/catch-and-shoot-drills/111-catch-from-inside-out

Patience and repetitons will help you correct your shot providing your form/mechanics are correct.

Then it will take 100s to 1000s of shots to make it automatic.

Fading away will cause your shot to flatten out... leaning will cause the ball to go towards the way you lean.... you really need to work on your mechanics, especially your release.

Good luck and let us know how it goes.


Nick says:
11/28/2012 at 9:57:23 PM

Thanks for the reply Ken! I''m really trying to fix my shot. When I land after I elevate I tend to fall backwards. It seems that when I don''t fall back my shot has too much power. I''m not sure if when I bend my legs, I should get the ball to it''s set point. Or bring it down then rise up in one motion while I elevate. I also have trouble with my release point. It feels like I elevate, then my arms just fire forward to get the ball off giving it too much power.


Kevin says:
11/29/2012 at 2:05:34 AM

Yes, I am making those shots. I like to shoot threes around 26 feet. I feel more comfortable there. My percentage from three, on most days, is around 45%. I plan on really working on my jumper in the winter ,but since I can just barely dunk, I'll work on that too.


Ken says:
11/29/2012 at 8:55:59 AM

OK Kevin -

Break your shot down and rebuild it - Look at the video.... start in close - 15' and don't move back until you are satisfied with the results... they say 5 in a row..... for you, I would think it should also be about your form, release point and how you land.

It sounds like BALANCE is part of your problem and every sport begins with good balance. Forget about the dunk right now and get your jumper straightened out.... Be PATIENT with yourself... this is going to take a little time to fix... but IF you really work at it, you will get your shot back and probably make it better.

Its hard making suggestions when we cant see your shot.... so I can only go by what you are telling us.

Small steps Kevin....


Mark says:
12/9/2012 at 2:30:54 PM

My shot is very good outside of practice and especially games. I knock down everything when I;m playing at the local rec or gym even against competition. But come game time I seem to shoot totally different and it becomes un predictable. Is there anything I can do to make sure my shot is always the same? ( btw: I get hundreds of shots up every morning on the Gun. and it feels and looks great)


Ken says:
12/9/2012 at 4:01:39 PM

Mark -

Could it be in "games" that those teams play tougher defense? You need to work on ways to get yourself open to take some good shots.

When you are practicing your shooting - are you working out at game speed? That could make a big difference. Maybe work on a little quicker release too?

Keep working on your game.....


Lou-Ellison Noel says:
12/28/2012 at 8:54:42 PM

This really helped a lot! I have one question though. I am an 11 year old girl C-Team basketball player. Do you guys think that I can try #3? And why or why not?! ~~~~~Lou-Ellison Noel~~~~~


Lexi Nicole Adams says:
12/28/2012 at 9:04:30 PM

Yeah, I agree with Lou-Ellison Noel because I am not 18 either. Please help, people.


Daniel says:
1/2/2013 at 10:14:25 PM

I have a habit of twisting my right knee for extra power when I go up for a shot the farther from the basket I am the more I twist my knee
Any tips on how to stop that


Winsor Alston says:
1/4/2013 at 10:45:39 PM

Hi I'm 14 and im currently playing basketball for my school. I feel that my jumpshot form is ok, but somehow my shot has a front spin on it. Is it important that I change it? And if it is can anyone tell me how to fix it so I get a good rotation.


Ken says:
1/5/2013 at 8:16:12 AM

Windsor -

Without seeing you shoot I can only take a few guesses here....forward spin? Not trying to make fun of you... but when I was a kid the first time I shot around with my dad, he had forward spin... I guess thats how they shot back then? :-)

Look at the five steps above and ask yourself if you are doing those --

IF I were you (or your coach) I would have you stand by a wall and work on your form...
Start by shooting one handed, that will force you to have the ball on the proper spot on your hand, keeping your elbow under the ball ... then go into your shot / hold your follow through.

As you start to use both hands, look at the picture on #3, that is how you are supposed to look like when you are shooting.

Good luck and I hope this helps.


Ivan says:
1/10/2013 at 10:48:35 PM

Hey

Love the tips! I need help with my range because my 3's are always short by a finger's width... Any tips on increasing range?


Ivan says:
1/10/2013 at 10:48:53 PM

Hey

Love the tips! I need help with my range because my 3's are always short by a finger's width... Any tips on increasing range?


Ken Sartini says:
1/11/2013 at 1:47:52 PM

Ivan -

Without seeing your shot.. I can think of 2 things... step into your shot and use more legs to increase range.

How old are you and what is your range right now? What is your shooting % from the arc now?


Vincent James says:
1/16/2013 at 10:52:47 PM

I don't feel comfortable with my left thumb bundled with my index finger. Do you have any tips on how I can keep my thumb and where and how it should be placed on the ball? Thanks


Ken says:
1/17/2013 at 9:47:09 AM

Vincent -

If you look at the picture above and the instructions, I think that they are trying to correct problems with your shot.
I just brought my hands into the shooting position - my thumb is close to my index finger, but just up to the knuckle... then there is space.

Where is your thumb located on the ball (non shooting hand) Read this and adjust your thumb accordingly

Thumb on Guide Hand

Some players flick the ball with their thumb on the guide hand when shooting the basketball. This will cause serious problems for the shooter and the ball will often spray left and right. It's tough enough to judge the distance, yet add another factor of left and right into the equation.

Most players develop this problem when they are too weak to get the ball to the rim, and the habit carries through their teenage and adult years.

How do you fix it?

You can squeeze your thumb against the index finger on your guide hand. This will not let you shoot the ball with the thumb. If the problem still continues, take your guide hand off of the ball by about a half-inch and shoot with one hand.


Seun Lanade says:
2/6/2013 at 5:24:48 PM

I'm 14 years old and I play high school basketball. I've had a ton of shooting problems throughout my career. I use to use my thumb on my left hand a lot and make most of my shots when I was 10 and 11, but now I'm trying to shoot the correct way. When I shoot my ball mostly falls short or is off to the left or right. And I do not feel comfortable shooting. I also lack shooting range. I think my hand placement and my follow through has something to do with it. How would I be able to fix my shooting problems?


Ken says:
2/6/2013 at 5:36:56 PM

Seun -

Take a look at this and you will see the correct way to shoot, how and where to release the ball and the follow through.

http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/fundamentals/shooting-technique.html

Without seeing your shot, it seems that it is too flat and you are jerking your arm back? Do I have that right?

You should be bringing the ball up and releasing it with your elbow by your eye / ear level. As you bring it up there, you will have a "window" to see your target.

HOLD the follow through until the ball goes into the basket.

I hope this helps.


Michael Petit-Frere says:
3/7/2013 at 10:39:39 PM

I kinda have a problem with the jerky movement part when I jump I naturally jump forward when I shoot causing me to do a fade away, people tell me it's due to my weight and hight I'm 6'1 and 225 male. Can anyone help me fix this


Ken Sartini says:
3/8/2013 at 9:34:11 AM

Michael -

I am trying to figure out how you are fading away if you are jumping forward..... since I cant see your shot.

I think I would suggest that you start shooting close to the basket... maybe 6 feet and work on landing where you leave your feet. (or slightly forward) try this for awhile and let us know how it goes.


Ahad says:
4/3/2013 at 6:35:13 PM


Hey I m a fairly good mid-range and 3 point shooter, however I seem to struggle a lot when I change location of where I am playing. I usually play on an indoor court a few days a week and play on an out door court(cement) for a few days as well, I am sure that both are 10ft but my shoot seems to be off as soon as I change locations, after playing for a few days my percentage goes up again and when I change venues it happens all over again. Anyone faces the same problems or has any ideas to help with the issue?


Alex says:
4/3/2013 at 9:36:31 PM

The problem with my shot is that i end up using my guide hand when I''''''''m in a game. if i think about it and realize im using my guide hand, i wont do it. But, in a game, i end up using to hands. i dont fee confident that i have the strength with one.


Ken Sartini says:
4/3/2013 at 9:49:53 PM

Ok Alex =

Time to break that bad habit.... Obviously you have the strenght.... you are going to have to put some time in on your shot.

Start shooting with one hand... close to the basket... What we called BEEF Check. Block to block.... ONE hand shooting.... then work your way back a little bit using just one hand.

This is going to take 100s of shots to change this. Once you get comfortable shooting with one hand, you can add your guide hand, BUT keep it off the ball for awhile. Shoot a few hundred more and then put your guide hand on the ball and keep it FROZEN.

You can do the same thing against a wall and work on your form and breaking that habit and what we call " creating new muscle memory. "

I hope this helps, let us know how it goes.


King banker says:
4/30/2013 at 3:49:56 AM

Actually the bank shot is more consistent than any jumper do to the simple fact of percentages and efficiency. I can bank every shot I take in any game. Up to 13 games I tend to bank about 5-6 shots and get easy layups and dunks from steals and cherry picking...At first I started with the pure jumpshot then that became to easy and started takiong difficult shot and hitting em. Now the bank is always open and I shoot about 70 to 80%.. My mechanics are basically the opposite of the furious 5 bad ones...My advice practice the bank and make all of them in a game...oh and when you uncork the banker make sure you turn away before the ball even hits the backboard...The scumbags that I light up always ask me how do you always make all those difficult shots? I just tell em, I do it all the time..


Ryan says:
5/31/2013 at 5:40:15 PM

I used to always struggle with leaving my guide hand on the ball to long, thus affecting my shot. I have since been taking my guide hand off as soon as I reach my set point, but before I release the shot. I don't bring it down, I just bring it off. You mention that pros finish with their guide hand extended. Is this something I should be doing even though I leave my guide hand up? Thanks.


Ken Sartini says:
5/31/2013 at 8:19:53 PM

Ryan -

Don't try and overthink all of this. How are you shooting the ball now? %wise? Is your shot straight or does it go off to a side?

Don't try and emulate the pros so much... they are pros because they are the best of the best and have worked on it for years.

If you look at the top pictures ( #6 ) you will see where the guide hand is upon release.

Its really hard to advise people when you cant see their shot... but, let us know how its going.


Thomas says:
6/6/2013 at 3:12:01 PM

I am 14 and have a thumb flicking action with my guide hand. When I look at video of my shot it appears as though my guide hand is off the ball long before release and rotation looks perfect. Should I try eliminate the habit? I'm sure this came from my younger years when I was using that thumb to help with power. I am one of, if not the best shooter in my area and shoot with a solid FG%. Any advice?


Ken Sartini says:
6/6/2013 at 3:39:18 PM

Thomas -

Without being able to see your shot... all we have to go on is what you are saying.;... What is your shooting %? Does this efffect your shot in any way, inside or outside the arc??

I take it that you are not having any problems right now... so without seeing the shot, I would say .... " If its not broken, don't fix it. "

Question - When you play against better / qiucker players, does this effect your shot? If not, enjoy the game and keep shooting. :-)


Thomas says:
6/14/2013 at 9:44:13 AM

In a competitve AAU program I am shooting over 50% from the field. As an example, I was 9 of 15 from 3pt at the comptetive Gym Rat Challenge last week. I work on my keeping my motion short and release quick. I actually find that wide open kick outs can sometimes be more difficult because I lose my rythm. I just did not know if I should try to fix this motion with my balance hand.
Thanks for the help!


Connor says:
6/27/2013 at 11:58:42 PM

I am a rising sophomore this year. Last year I made my varsity team as a freshman. I have always been considered as a shooter, and this past year was no exception. However, I started the season on a mini slump. A little bit into the season, I made an adjustment of gripping the ball harder and especially gripping the ball harder with my thumb. I hit fire, and shot around 50 percent from 3 for most of the rest of the season. However, I went into another slump at the end of the season. With a few exceptions, I still haven''t gotten out of this slump. I have near perfect mechanics, but I still have a couple of advanced concept questions that most websites don''t go into detail enough to answer. First, I am almost positive that gripping the ball harder helps my shot, because when I shoot it without a hard grip, the ball seems to spray from side to side. Yet I am unsure of how hard to grip with my thumb. I caught fire last year by gripping my thumb hard, but it doesn''t seem to work any more. Also, I am unsure of thumb placement. Should I keep my hand wide on the ball, or keep my fingers a little closer together? My only other problems are that I occasionally shoot across my body, and occasionally my elbow can stick out and my shooting hand can be a little too far on the right of the ball. Thanks for the help, Connor


Ken says:
7/5/2013 at 9:45:49 PM

Connor -

I have read this several times, not sure that I have ever had a player grip the ball hard, especially with the thumb. I am a firm believer of not fixing something if it isn't broken. So, do what works for you... but... IF your shooting is not consistent, then its time to look back at your form.

Take a look at the pictures above and compare those to what you do. Check out your form again and let us know what its like. With what you are saying, its very difficult to make suggestions without seeing the shot.

When I hear about inconsistent shooting I always go back to telling players about their form which includes placvement of hands.

Take a look at this and you will see the correct way to shoot, how and where to release the ball and the follow through.

http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/fundamentals/shooting-technique.html




Nader says:
7/20/2013 at 1:19:43 PM

I shoot directly from my shooting pocket and my shot gets blocked often how do I change that?


Ken Sartini says:
7/20/2013 at 3:35:25 PM

As you release the ball is your elbow by your eye / ear going into your lift? If not, you might try that and see how that goes.

Its hard to tell since we cant see your shot.

Another suggestion is that make sure that you have more space to get your shot off.... making some shot fakes to create space.


Rafael Paulino says:
8/8/2013 at 3:45:18 PM

Hi im really having a problem adding Rotation to the ball. Im a lefty and i keep shooting completely Flat. I dont know what the issue is is it my guide hand? or my shooting hand


Ken Sartini says:
8/8/2013 at 6:47:03 PM

Rafael -

This is hard to tell since we cant see your shot, it could be either one or both.

Lets talk about your form..... as you look at the pictures above, is your shot like that?

The first thing you need to do is to work on your form so that your shot becomes automatic... we call that MUSCLE MEMORY.

Start by standing by a wall and then WITH ONE HAND... take one dribble, bring the ball up and go into your shot against the wall. ( not using your guide hand at all )

As you are going into your shot, your elbow should be around your eye/ear area... that should give you a good lift. Don't forget to get your legs into your shot.

After you get the rotation you want.. add the guide hand without touching the ball.... do 100s of those... then you can add the guide hand, by now you should have corrected your problem.

Now you can go to the basket and work on your shot there... but start close and work your way back as you experience success.

We had a guy come in and hold a couple of shooting clinics at our school and another one in our area... he RARELY MISSED.. seriously... 1 miss in a two hour clinic.

His name was George Lehmann - he taught the BEEF method.
B- Balanc
E- Eye on the target
E- Elbow under the ball AND
F- Follow through.

I taught this method because I firmly believed in it.


This is going to take 100s / maybe 1,000s of shots to change your bad habit so be patient with yourself.

Let us know how this goes after a few days.


Luis says:
8/23/2013 at 8:25:42 PM

how do i go about the release? a problem i have is my shot is usually too strong i noticed this because i bank in a lot of my 3s and im terrible from the corner shots? do i use my arm motion to shoot the ball with no wrist movement or leave my arm at 90 degree angle and use only wrist to shoot and release the ball?


Brandon says:
8/25/2013 at 6:33:02 PM

Whenever i take a spot up jumpshot i take a huge power step with my right foot. How do i fix this habit and how should my feet me positioned?


Ken Sartini says:
8/25/2013 at 8:14:26 PM

Luis....

Take a look at the top of this page and it should help you with your release.... by the way, there are a lot of people who don't shoot well from the corners... its a tough shot.

Brandon ...

I cant remember the coaches name but he taught that move... explode off that foot to give you more power for longer shots.

Is this messing your shot up? What is the problem? We cant see your shot so you need to explain this a little better and we MIGHT be able to help you more.


somebody says:
9/7/2013 at 6:07:42 AM

i had a problem with the thumb on the guide hand. so i used your method. i started to get used to it. so is this just for practice and then when i get fully used to it i should then shoot normally (without the thumb and index squeezing) and my guide hand thumb will not interfere or should shoot forever like this?
hope you unterstood.
thanks


Bobo says:
9/25/2013 at 11:44:20 PM

But m-m-m-my leggggggguh uh uh uh uh uh yeah


Gurshan says:
10/8/2013 at 10:20:51 PM

Hi, I am in grade 8 and I am an ok shooter. The only thing I have trouble with is that sometimes I follow through with both of my hands. Do you know any tips/ways to fix this?


Ken Sartini says:
10/10/2013 at 7:29:27 PM

Gurshan

This is hard to tell since we cant see your shot,

Lets talk about your form..... as you look at the pictures above, is your shot like that?

The first thing you need to do is to work on your form so that your shot becomes automatic... we call that MUSCLE MEMORY.

Start by standing by a wall and then WITH ONE HAND... take one dribble, bring the ball up and go into your shot against the wall. ( not using your guide hand at all )

As you are going into your shot, your elbow should be around your eye/ear area... that should give you a good lift. Don't forget to get your legs into your shot.

After you get the rotation you want.. add the guide hand without touching the ball.... do 100s of those... then you can add the guide hand, by now you should have corrected your problem.

Now you can go to the basket and work on your shot there... but start close and work your way back as you experience success.

We had a guy come in and hold a couple of shooting clinics at our school and another one in our area... he RARELY MISSED.. seriously... 1 miss in a two hour clinic.

His name was George Lehmann - he taught the BEEF method.
B- Balanc
E- Eye on the target
E- Elbow under the ball AND
F- Follow through.

I taught this method because I firmly believed in it.


This is going to take 100s / maybe 1,000s of shots to change your bad habit so be patient with yourself.

Let us know how this goes after a few days.


Ahmad Rafay says:
10/15/2013 at 12:31:04 PM

Coach,
(PLEASE READ)
This week I have been struggling to get my smooth flow in my shot. I am turning 15 and I have been a 53% three point shooter. I have also been using my left thumb for some additional force. If I get 2 seconds for a shot (during a game), its going in. But when I go shoot around by myself, I''m not the shooter I am in the game. It''s scaring me because the fact that I need to stop using my left thumb totally ruins my shot 80%. Some days when I shoot around, I''ve totally lost my touch. But in the game, it''s nothing at all. I knock down 2-4 consecutive threes. Please give me some advice on this. Should I continue using my left thumb as some additional force?


Ken Sartini says:
10/15/2013 at 12:58:48 PM

Ahmad -

There is an old saying - " IF it aint broke, don't fix it! "

53% from the arc? You are using your left thumb and shoot that well? I don't think there are any Pros that shoot that well. What age group are you playing at?

Here is something I found -
There is no doubt that the Warriors' 25-year-old point guard is the best shooter in the NBA today. He made a staggering 3.5 threes per game this season while connecting on 45 percent of his attempts. He also shot 90 percent from the free-throw line.

Heck, IF I were your coach I don't think I would say anything to you.

This GAME is supposed to be FUN... don't let it scare you. You are successful shooting the ball and whats more fun than that?? Keep working on your game and have fun.

Don't over-think the game.... I wish I could see your shot, it would be easier to tell you what's wrong or what's right..... doesn't seem like you are doing anything wrong.... you would have the GREEN LIGHT if you played for me.


Ahmad Rafay says:
10/15/2013 at 1:37:59 PM

Coach,
Do you have an email. I could send you my form. Is this possible? I recorded it on my phone on "camera" and you could tell me if theres anything wrong in my form.


Ken Sartini says:
10/15/2013 at 2:10:40 PM

Why don't you download it on You Tube and then send the link here......


Ahmad Rafay says:
10/15/2013 at 5:12:19 PM

Would I have to make a YouTube channel?


Ken Sartini says:
10/15/2013 at 7:06:08 PM

I have never done that so I'm not sure what the procedure is.... try doing it and see if it walks you thru it.


Ahmad Rafay says:
10/15/2013 at 10:40:11 PM

Coach,

I, myself as a shooter knows how well I shoot. These last 3 days (long weekend) I was going to just shoot. No drills. Just shoot. I wanted to be better than 50% from the arc. But all of the sudden I was missing shots that I normally make easy in games. Today I had to see if I still didn't have my touch. But I went outside and I was draining them. I am happy with my shot for now. But I am still scared that I may "lose my shot". So that's why I was concerned about my thumb. I think I should continue to shoot with my thumb and wear like one of those finger straps on my thumb to make it more comfortable (the ones that cover all of your finger). It is also one of those things in games where, you get the ball and if it gets out of your hand it's going in. I've never payed any attention if I use my thumb in games but in games my shot feels very smooth. Also coach I'm a freshmen in highschool. I don't want to ruin my junior and senior shot because I hear if you use your thumb, it messes up your shot in the future. Coach, I need some advice.

PS: I will try to get the link on this ASAP.


Ken Sartini says:
10/16/2013 at 6:59:48 AM

Ahmad -

I like the idea of your wanting to be a better shooter - but the best 3 point shooter in the NBA doesn't shoot 50% from the arc.

I want to say this again to you.... don't worry to much about how you are shooting right now.... especially with the results you are getting.... IF you try and overthink this game, you are setting yourself up for trouble.

Relax and have some FUN too.

" I've never payed any attention if I use my thumb in games but in games my shot feels very smooth. " THIS is exactly what you are looking for.... you being comfortable with your shot.... especially in games.

I am looking forward to be able to see your shot... take this from different angles too if you can.

Another suggestion... talk to the coaches at your school and ask for their advice... you will be playing for them and I would think that they would want to help you also.


Ken Sartini says:
10/16/2013 at 7:02:53 AM

By the way -

There is more to this game than just shooting the 3 ball...... GREAT DEFENSE for starters... being able to handle the ball without turning it over too much, rebounding, passing and helping your teammates get open.

What position do you play?


Ahmad Rafay says:
10/16/2013 at 10:45:44 AM

Coach-
You're right. I should stop worrying so much about my shot. I'm comfortable with it so theirs no need to change it. I asked my coach in school and all he said was "just shoot". I'm fine with that. Coach could you give me some tips on playing defense. My opponent usually blows by me which leaves me no choice but to foul. By the way, I play SG on the wing usually.

PS- I'm going to post the link to my form but from which angle do you want to see my form/hands?


Ken Sartini says:
10/16/2013 at 12:34:20 PM

Ok, we solved that problem..... now for the defense.

Instead of reacting to what he does, why don't you try directing him to a spot / point on the floor.... like... IF you are covering him on the wing... direct him to the baseline without getting beat.... if you are at the point... direct him to the sideline / free throw line extended.

By the way, forget the fouling stuff.... you wont last long on the floor doing that. You can focus on his mid section... he isn't going anywhere without that. Most of the fakes come from using the head or ball or both.

Every coach has a different philosophy regarding how to play D on the ball... find out what your coaches want and follow their instructions.

I think the best angle would be - as I am looking at you, I would want to be able to see your guide hand and thumb and from the side of your shooting hand.


Vic L. says:
10/22/2013 at 1:18:46 PM

Thanks, this is great.
I'm getting a lot, including the dialogue in the comments.

My 13 yr old son, who plays shooting guard, is having some confidence issues.
I'm trying to help him through that.
I'll definitely use the tips and links you provided.

Just to add my own tip, when he was much younger, he would juts laucnh that ball straight to the hoop. I explained that he had to put an arc to his shot so it would go in.

What worked for us is I stood about 2 to 3 ft. in front of him, extended my hand up, and asked him to shoot it such that I would not be able to block it. This resulted in his shot having an arc and balls going in.

Hope that helps.


Ryan says:
11/25/2013 at 6:52:08 AM

how can I get good elevation on my shot to getmy shot over taller defenders from the three point line off the dribble? how should my feet be set ?


Ken Sartini says:
11/25/2013 at 10:31:04 AM

http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/fundamentals/shooting-technique.html

Ryan -

Take a look at the top of this page and then check out the link at the top of my post. It should give you a good idea as to how to have a better fundamental shot.

As for shooting over taller players... find a way to get yourself open... IF they are several inches taller than you and have good hops,,, you are going to struggle. Create more space by head and ball fakes, a good crossover, that can help you. If you are coming off a screen or a coming to the ball, try and catch the ball in the triple threat position, that way you can go into your shot a little faster.

Hope this helps. (check some of the replies above, Jeff and Joe have given some great pointers to shooting questions that will solve most problems. )


Ken Sartini says:
11/25/2013 at 10:32:12 AM

http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/fundamentals/shooting-technique.html

Ryan -

Take a look at the top of this page and then check out the link at the top of my post. It should give you a good idea as to how to have a better fundamental shot.

As for shooting over taller players... find a way to get yourself open... IF they are several inches taller than you and have good hops,,, you are going to struggle. Create more space by head and ball fakes, a good crossover, that can help you. If you are coming off a screen or a coming to the ball, try and catch the ball in the triple threat position, that way you can go into your shot a little faster.

Hope this helps. (check some of the replies above, Jeff and Joe have given some great pointers to shooting questions that will solve most problems. )


Joe says:
12/8/2013 at 6:12:34 PM

I have a question. I can shoot pretty well, but i"ve still yet to figure out how to control distance while shooting. Do i change my shooting arc or do i use less leg power in short range and more in long range or do i change how much power i my shooting arm shoots the ball?


Ken Sartini says:
12/8/2013 at 7:12:29 PM

Joe -

Watch this video and listen to how he explains that.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfTxHGOQdEc&list=PLCE640F251A4CDE74&index=1

This takes a lot of practice... that boy is only 14 but he has been working on this since he was 11.

I hope this helps, let us know what you are thinking now?


joe says:
12/8/2013 at 8:21:13 PM

I would say now by varying arc on my shots. am i right?


Kensartini says:
12/8/2013 at 8:29:12 PM

Since I can't see your shop it is difficult to say...... But I think you are on the right track. As you saw that boy shooting in the video start and close and work your way back. Try it out the next chance you get ....let us know how it is working for you. Just be patient and keep working on it.


joe says:
12/8/2013 at 8:46:54 PM

the thing is joe says that optimal arc is 45 degrees so how can i shoot up closs with an arc of 45 degrees and then shoot deeper with the same arc?


Ken Sartini says:
12/9/2013 at 9:37:40 AM

Joe -

When you are releasing the ball, your elbow should be around your eye/ear area - that should give you the proper arc. This is going to take a lot ( 1,000's ) of repititions, so be patient with your self.

Everybody is a little different, you have to find out what works best for you... but what I said above is pretty much the norm. If you go back and look at the video, you will see thats where Gavin's elbow is as he releases the ball.

Lets go back the distance part.... Start by shooting close to the basket 5 - 6 feet and work your way a few feet at a time as you get comfortable and are successful - again, elbow by your eye/ear as you release the ball.

I hope this is helping you.... as you work on this, let us know how its going.


chris says:
12/14/2013 at 10:04:36 PM

The basketball should not rest on the side of the thumb. The correct placement is between the side and full thumb grip. This allows for the optimal palm pocket and helps with dominant hand form shooting.


John says:
3/11/2014 at 5:52:08 PM

What fingers should go to the center of the rim.


Ken Sartini says:
3/13/2014 at 12:32:46 PM

FOLLOW-THROUGH


Your wrists should be floppy (relaxed).
Fingers should be pointed at the target (rim).
Finish high. You should see your fingers at the top square of the back board.
Hold your follow through position until the ball hits the rim.

I'm not so sure that you need to worry about which fingers should go to the center of the rim... but I would say your index finger if you have to think of one in particular.


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