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Shooting Free Throws / How to shoot free throws

 


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| March 3, 2003

From our basketball playing tips gym section.

Perfect Your Free Throws For those of you that have suffered as much as Shaquille O'neal at the free throw line, here's some help. I am not the best basketball player in the world, just a 17 year old kid that knows a thing or two about the game. I am assuming you already know how to shoot the ball. I will be helping you to improve what they don't tell you at practice. First, I will show you how to make that game winning free throw.

1. LINE UP WITH THE BASKET-when lining up, your lead foot (right - if you are shooting right-handed) should be directly lined up with the center of the rim. On most hardwood courts there will be a small dot on the very center of the line. Set your toe on it. This will make it easier to line up for a straighter shot. The biggest mistake I see players make is to stradle the dot instead of put their toe on it, this usually will send the shot a little to the side. Just enough for the other team to get the rebound and take off down the court.

2. GO THROUGH THE SAME ROUTINE-every time you step up too the line, go through the same routine. Remember, you have 10 seconds to shoot the ball, and you can use as much of that as you like. Bounce the ball a few times, spin it in your hands, (Karl Malone likes to talk to himself while at the line). Be creative, when you find a routine that works for you use it over and over and over, it will help you fell more comfotable for the shot.

3. CLEAR YOUR HEAD-a free throw can be the hardest or easiest shot you take, depending on you. Clear your mind and concentrate on the shot. I know this sounds corny, but, imagine the ball going into the hoop. Go to your happy place, whatever it takes. A free throw is all about finesse and skill, if you are still mad about that call the ref made earlier in the game, you won't be as alert and focused.

Remember, basketball is 80% mental. If you have that going for you then everything will drop.







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