Any parent wanting to introduce their child to the importance of teamwork and competition should enroll them in organized team sports. Basketball is one of those sports. It’s a game that requires plenty of energy and physical fitness in order to be played successfully. Here are the fundamentals of basketball for young players.
Anyone who’s ever dribbled a basketball knows how important this is. In order to be successful in basketball, a player needs to know how to use their hands and eyes in conjunction with one another to dribble. After all, this is the only way you can legally transport a ball down the court while walking. If there’s any sort of delay in reaction between the hands or the eyes, it could result in balls rolling down the court.
Basketball is a fast-paced game that requires players to keep up a tremendous amount of energy. This makes it ideal for young children, who tend to seem boundless in terms of energy. However, even the most energetic child can become winded from running back and forth between both ends of the gymnasium. Even if they aren’t the one holding the ball, they still need to keep up a good pace in order to be an active part of the game. It’s also important that players know how to pace themselves, rather than using up all their energy at once and end up exhausted.
Basketball is a team sport. So, it requires players to work together. In order for points to be scored, there will likely have to be at least several passes between teammates. Young players will need to know all the crucial steps of a successful pass, from how to position the ball, to getting the attention of a teammate, to completing the pass without fear of interception.
Stopping the other team from scoring is just as important as helping your team score. Through defense, young players can learn how to protect their goal as much as possible. Fundamentals learned here include stealing, blocking, and intercepting. This is important in keeping a young player on their toes and ensuring they don’t let any shots be scored that could’ve been otherwise prevented.
Shooting a basketball takes some getting used to. It requires proper aim and momentum in order to get the ball through the hoop. There’s also the matter of dealing with the pressure to score during a game. When a player receives the ball and believes they are close enough to the goal to score, they need to have the proper focus to not lose their nerve and miss the shot. Through increased practice, a young player can become used to working under the pressure and make as many shots as possible, from jump shots to lay-ups to three-point shots.
There’s arguably no greater pressure in a basketball game than being tasked to shoot free throws after being fouled, particularly near the end of the game with a close score. Through repeated exposure to standing on the foul line and practicing shots, a young player can become adapted to the sensation of feeling the pressure on that line. They can also remind themselves of the proper form and stay focused on the goal.
When a player catches a ball but doesn’t want to dribble, they can only pass or shoot. Since traveling (walking while holding the ball) is illegal, they can instead pivot. This means repositioning themselves for a pass or a shot through keeping one foot in place and moving the other one. This lets young players learn all about how to make the right decision in a split-second.