The Basics of Basketball

Basketball is a team sport where two teams, usually of five players each, against each other on a rectangular playing court, battle it out for the win with the objective of making a basket through the opponent’s hoop with a basketball goal. The game was originally played between teams in a court designed specifically for this purpose but overtime and fouls have since allowed its adaptation to indoor and professional sports. Many people may not understand basketball and consider it a simple touchy subject, with little importance on the skill level of the players or even the skills of the teams. That is far from the truth. Though basketball may seem simple, it has evolved over the years to a very intricate sport that requires many different skills to be employed by all players, regardless of their age or experience level.


When thinking about basketball, one must first consider that it is not a sport where one player can dominate all the time. Unlike tennis or some other contact sports, where one player may be able to overpower the other with sheer strength, basketball involves both offensive and defensive plays and strategies. A good offensive strategy in basketball may involve forcing the other team into difficult shots that they may be capable of making; a good defensive strategy will involve stealing the ball from the opponent and converting it into points for one’s team. While many people think of coordination among players as being at the heart of basketball, a basic understanding of shots, ball handling, and ball placement are all required to play the sport successfully.

Basic basketball skills include shooting the basketball, ball handling, and ball placement. Shooting the basketball involves a series of upper and lower body movements including shooting the ball, standing straight in front of the ball, and making sure the player is shooting towards the basket with their follow through motion. Ball handling skills involve getting the ball from one player to another on the floor without losing momentum or turning around in mid-air. Ball placement refers to making sure the ball goes where it is suppose to go, either through the hoop or across the court. These basic skills need to be taught and learned early in a player’s basketball career, since good fundamentals and good habits will carry over throughout one’s career and help them to become better skilled players.