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Free-Throw Shooting Tips

Read these 5 Free-Throw Shooting Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Basketball tips and hundreds of other topics.

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What is proper foul shot technique?

Common Free Throw Routine

You begin at the foul line with your feet shoulder width apart. Pick up the ball and dribble a few times with two hands. Bend your knees a couple of times, take a deep breathe or two. Now concentrate only on the rim, visualize the ball going through the rim, then shoot a nice, balanced shot. Use your legs to get the arch needed. Snap the wrist, follow through, then go get your made shot and do it again.

How can I improve my free throws?

Develop a Routine

One of the most important aspects of becoming a good free throw shooter is to develop a routine. Your routine should be something that you are comfortable with and that you can do every time you go to the free throw line. Your routine can consist of bouncing the ball the same number of times, wiping your hands, taking a breath, etc. The idea behind this comes from the fact that free throw shooting is "muscle memory." You are teaching your muscles to react the same way every time. Your routine helps this "memory."

How can I improve my free throws?


Remembering the BEEF is good wayto learn to become a better foul shooter. BEEF stands for... B-balance-get on the foul line and get your balance. E-eyes-see the rim. E-elbow-try to get your elbow under the basketball F-follow thru-an essential part of all shooting. Make sure you follow thru with a constant, relaxed release.


Get Some Arc on it!

As with all forms of shooting the basketball, arc is extremely important. The higher the flight of the ball, the bigger the rim is when it eventually lands. This is why Shaquille O'n'eil is one of the worst free-throw shooters in history. He "throws" the ball at the rim with such a low trajectory, that it looks like he's throwing darts at the rim. Don't be like Shaq, get some arc on that shot!

How can I improve my free throws?

Line Up for Your Free Throw

When you have mastered the proper technique for free throw shooting, you simply need to make sure that your body is lined up properly in order to ensure accuracy on your shot. The big toe on your strong foot (the foot on the same side of your body as your shooting hand), your shooting elbow, and your shooting forefinger should all align with the center of the rim when you are shooting properly.

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