Shooting is one of the most important parts of anyone’s game when it comes to youth basketball. Here are some shooting tips to take you to the next level.


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Youth Basketball: 5 Tips to Improve Your Shooting

Transforming your shooting takes time and practice. Lebron James, Steph Curry, Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant all have one thing in common: they practiced and practiced. Reaching the next level in your game requires you to master shooting.

Whether you’ve played youth basketball for years or are just starting, these basketball tips can help you improve your shooting. You can check our open gym times here.


1. Slowly Increase Distance from the Basket

Steph Curry likes to start practice by shooting close to the basket. During the course of practice, slowly move back until you’re eventually shooting from the three-point line. The goal is to start up close to the basket and start identifying issues with your shot.

As you correct these issues, you can slowly start moving back while making any corrections needed along the way.


2. Master the Basics of Form

Form matters, even for professionals that make a career out of the sport. Some days you’re tired, life is stressful, or your game is off. On these days, it’s easy for form to be off, leading to issues making baskets.

Remember that your form should be as follows:

·   Knees slightly bent

·   Feet about shoulder-width apart

You can choose to have one foot forward (shooting foot) or opt to face the basket square – it's a matter of preference.


3. Understand the Basics of Grip

Your grip matters, and while a youth's hands may be smaller, it’s important to try and balance the ball in one hand. The ball, when balanced properly, will sit on your finger pads. Ideally, you’ll have minor space between the ball and the palm of your hand.

Every youth basketball coach should teach grip basics to kids.


4. Relax Your Wrist on the Finish

When the ball leaves your fingertips, you’ll want to hold the follow-through to maintain proper shooting technique. The one area of the follow-through that can’t be ignored is the wrist, which should be relaxed.

If you’re keeping a stiff wrist, you’re not shooting properly.

The wrist should relax, allowing for natural motion in the follow-through.


5. Stop Trying to Hang in the Air

If you’ve ever watched Kobe play, you’ll notice that he hangs in the air often before making a shot. He was a master at this technique, and while he makes it look easy, it’s not. Kids will often try and look good by hanging in the air only to form bad shooting habits.

Kobe was Kobe – one of the best to ever play the game.

He could hang in the air with what seemed like ease, but most people will want to shoot when they’re around one inch from the top of their jump. Trying to mimic the best to ever play the game is a bad idea because you’re overlooking the countless hours of practice needed to play like one of the greats.

If you follow these basketball tips, you’ll have a much easier time making more shots. Over time, you’ll come up with your own practice habits that lead to more shots going into the basket. Joining in on youth basketball at a young age can help you master these techniques as you grow into a better player.

Sign up for youth basketball at Countryside YMCA