Some people consider free throws a sport, some think of them as a punishment, others a challenge, and yet others a skill that must be used that can be the difference between a loss and a win for a team. Whichever opinion you have of free throws, they are part of the game of basketball and can be used as a single tool to propel one team apart from another. Mental strategy, uniformity, strength and focus should determine whether a free throw shot is going in or not. It is up to each player individually to decide that.
When shooting a basketball, it is very important to have proper form. Usually, the least dominant hand will be placed along the side, and the dominant hand will be placed behind the basketball. This is to be able to have enough power to propel a ball forward with uniform throwing capability each time.
When shooting a free throw, a different approach can be taken because a free throw is not done under pressure and one has up to ten seconds to shoot the ball. Shooting a free throw gives the shooter and everyone else a chance to relax. The shooter should always take a deep breath, take the opportunity to catch their breath, focus on the ball going in and shoot. A lot of national basketball players (NBA) are known for talking to themselves, or touching their jerseys in a constant motion.
Each free throw should be uniform and should not change between practice and a game. Focus of shooting a free throw is usually the difference between someone making a free throw and missing. In the NBA, psychologists are often used to help each player focus on what is going to help them stay focused on making each basket and keeping their minds off of other things outside of basketball.
It is important when shooting to know exactly what each finger should be doing at the exact same time as the knees and each muscle involved. It seems like an easy thing to do, but if it was easy then everybody would make all their free throws. It all comes down to practice, practice, and practice. Each and every day. Form is an important thing to consider. If one has been practicing free throws for four seasons straight and has been doing a poor job, then they probably want to change the way they shoot their shots. If someone has been shooting free throws perfectly, and then halfway through a season wants to change form, it may be a bad idea and could result in missing more shots. Either way, finding a consistent way of shooting a free throw is very important.
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