playing basketball

How To Play Basketball: A Basic Learning Guide For Beginners!

Are you an absolute beginner and wantto learn basketball but don’t know where to start?

Basketball is one of the utmost challenging, enjoyable as well as exciting game globally. It is usually played on a four-sided shaped court.

This sport is not difficult to play. For you to know how this game is played, you just have to train the essentials with a lot of commitment.

If you are able to learn about the main rules and the basics you will be able to become a professional player. You need to know the dribbling, defense, jump stops and shooting. This will enable your learning process to be relaxed.

In the post below, I will take you through the basketball basics that all beginners ought to know.

Basketball for beginners    

As an amateur, starting out might be very difficult for you if you don’t know the fundamentals of the game. It is, therefore, mandatory that you begin with the basic things like dribbling, passing and shooting. Basketball has a small number of drills designed to help you as a total beginner to easily learn the offensive and defensive principles.

Knowing these drills will accelerate your learning curve for the hoops. And this will eventually help you easily advance and perfect your overall basketball skills in a shorter period of time. Below are the 4 main skills you need to know as a trainee;

#1. Ball handling


The first skill is how you handle the ball. Basketball mainly entails dribbling the ball around the court. Therefore, you need to learn some dripping movements so that you familiarize with the ball handling.

Doing some dribble tags, stationary drills and tight chairs enables you to appropriately move the ball during your training session.

Dribble tags- this one is done with other trainees. As you dribble the ball, all other players need to avoid being tagged by someone having the ball. You need to be constant in dribbling.

Stationary drills- here you attempt some drooling in a circular motion around your legs at varied heights. You can also train by dribbling the ball through your legs without moving around the court.

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Tight chairs-this skill is usually done with six chairs. You need to arrange them in two rows of three chairs each. Now you have to dribble around each chair with different skills like figure 8

#2. Shooting

For you to be able to score points in this port you need to know how to shoot. All beginners need to learn this skill and the various techniques of shooting.

We have the box drill and the air-ball drill.

shooting basketball

In the air-ball drill, there must be several players each with a ball.  You all get in an offensive position, dropping your elbows, jumping and shooting from your highest points.

Box drill is carried out with one ball but with players on the right and left side on the court. Player on the right takes a jump shot to the backyard while the left side players run up to receive the rebound making their own shot. The ball then moves from one player to another on the right side for drill continuousness.

#3. Passing

This is the most critical part. You need to get the ball to your co-players.

Being a learner, you need to know how to make decent passes throughout the game. You need to practice some chest passes with other trainees. Also, overhead passes are allowed in this sport thus learning how to go about them is key. You need to keep the ball directly above your head.

Bounce passes are also important in basketball. Here as you pass the ball, you target the floor about three-quarters between you and your teammate.

#4. Offensive /Defensive drills

It is required that you learn to be either an offender or a defender. During this game, there will be a lot of game shifts going on hence you must train the offensive/defensive drills.

An Offensive drill: This is a struggle with players divided and lined up under each basket. First players from both sides dribble at full speed to the opposite baskets as the next players are all set to grip the rebound and repeat the drill.

A defensive drill: As you practice this, you need two players standing in between from the ball. One defensive and the other offensive. After the signal, the defensive player uses his/her position to keep the other player from getting the ball.

Here's a complete list of basketball fouls and penalties.

Where to play basketball   

basketball court dimension

The sport can take place indoors or outdoors. This all depends on your comfortability and where you prefer best.

This game is played on a basketball court. Avail yourself at any nearest court where you can be able to practice. If you don’t have any around your neighborhood don’t worry. This sport can also be played in the gym because they have an area set aside for practicing basic skills.

However, as a learner, you should not play at public courts because you might feel challenged by the experts hence give up. Some of the places best for playing are;

  • Backyard
  • Gym
  • Schoolyards or playgrounds
  • Community center facilities
  • Mounting hoops on the garage

Take your game to the next level

Do you wish to be like the professionals in basketball?

Getting yourself a good coach will be of great help here. You should find one who has built experience with the game and good at training for you to become skilled.

You need to know the shooting. You will only score points through shooting in this sport. It is for this reason you need to learn how to become an effective shooter. Additionally, you must learn how to be able to stop a catch from an opponent.

Dribbling as you move around the court is also very technical. It is very necessary for you to learn on how to dribble without losing balance. This can only be achieved through knowing the right posture. Knowledge of how to place your feet and arms is significant.

Jumping in this game is important too. High jumps will allow you to collect rebounds, shooting and blocking shots from your opponents. Therefore, you must learn how to correctly jump in the game.

There are some secrets that will help you focus on your objective. A good warm-up will help you raise your heart rate before you start your training.


  • You should always dribble the ball with your weak hand. This will enable you to handle the ball with both hands.
  • Never give up. If you feel like you have taken too long to be perfect you should never give up. Persistence is the key to excellence.
  • As a beginner, always ask tips from your trainer or other skilled players. By doing this, you will be able to learn the game faster.
  • Drink enough water. This game involves a lot of running.  Running leads to sweating thus water loss from the body. You need to take enough water to prevent dehydration.
  • If you think you want to avoid ankel injury, you need a pair of shoes for ankle support, get it! Also, you can get ankle brace too!
  • Buy basketball socks that prevent blisters.
  • Having proper basketball shorts will help too!


  • Get some rest. This activity can be very tiresome thus if you feel worn out, stop and take some rest. This being a fun game, you should not make the process strenuous for your body.
  • You also need to be keen on whichever step you are taking. Concentrate on the drills so that you are able to learn faster and master the game.

Final Thoughts

To be able to learn and master basketball, you need to know the basic skills of the game. There are six straightforward skills that you need to know as a beginner before you engage in this game. Therefore, you must be committed and disciplined for you to become confident and an expert in the game.

Moreover, you need to get in shape physically for swift movements around the court and to prevent injuries.

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