Top 5 Basketball Shooting Mistakes

On June 6, 2012

If you’ve ever watched professional or college basketball you’ve certainly noticed that every player shoots the ball slightly different. Much like a fingerprint, a shooting technique is personal to each individual. Even so, a few simple pointers can be followed and a few common mistakes need to be avoided in order to get the most out of your efforts. Here they are, in no particular order.

5) Lack of Touch or Arc

Many folks that shoot low percentages from the field and the free throw line could benefit greatly from learning how to put proper arc and “touch” on their shots. By properly bending your knees and coordinating your upper body with the release, your shots will come off of your hand straight and will be equipped with a slight backspin that often allows the ball to have favorable bounces. To improve the arc of your shot and give yourself a larger margin for error, begin each shooting workout just a few feet in front of the rim.

4) Wasted Motion

The evolution of former All-Star Chris Webber’s technique on the free throw line is a perfect example of the value of getting rid of wasted motion in one’s shooting technique. When he arrived in Sacramento, Webber released the ball behind his head and with almost no leg bending involved. By the time he left the city he had eliminated all excess and unnecessary motion from his shooting technique. His shooting percentages steadily climbed during that time.

3) Thumb Placement on Shooting Hand

It is very important to get your thumb out of the process of flinging and releasing the ball toward the rim. Simply let your thumb rest against the side of the ball, allowing it to guide the shot but not be part of the force behind it.

2) Thumb Placement on Guide Hand

Equally important to putting up straight shots is the thumb placement on your guide hand. Getting your guide hand or guide thumb involved in anything other than simply guiding the shot is a recipe for misfires and low shooting percentages.

1) Mistiming the Release

Clyde “The Glide” Drexler was somehow able to shoot well from the field for the entirely of his career by releasing the ball slightly after the peak of his jump, but it is a huge mistake for 99% of shooters. The best shooters of all time almost invariably released the ball at the peak of their jump.

Have your child get more guidance by signing up for Jonas Jerebko’s Elite Basketball Camp. Hurry up! Space is very limited.

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