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Basketball Study Guide

 Basketball Study Guide


The game of basketball was actually developed to help condition athletes during the winter months. In 1891 Dr. James Naismith, the physical education director at the YMCA College in Springfield, Massachusetts, introduced the game. The first basketball games were played with a soccer style ball and peach baskets as goals.


Game Play:

- Each team has five players on the court usually consisting of two guards, two forwards, and a center.

-Game begins with a jump ball/tip off.

-The team that has possession of the ball is on offense and their primary goal is to dribble, pass, or hand the ball into position to shoot the ball into their offensive basket

-A shot made from inside the 3 point arc is a 2 point field goal. A shot made from beyond the 3 point arc is a 3 point field goal.

-The team not in possession of the ball is on defense and their primary goal is to prevent the other team from scoring. The two most commonly used strategies are man to man and zone defenses.

-In man to man defense each player on the defensive team matches up and guards one player from the offensive team.

-In zone defense each player is responsible for a specific area on the court and must match up with any offensive player that enters that space.

Fouls: any time a player (either defensive or offensive player) gains an advantage through contact they will be called for a foul. When a foul is committed the opposing team will either be given the opportunity to shoot free throws (a 1 point shot from 15 feet while play is stopped) or will be awarded the ball out of bounds.

Rules violations include:

Traveling: when a player moves his/her feet while in possession of the ball without dribbling.

Three Seconds: when an offensive player is in the key or lane (see court diagram) for more than 3 seconds.

Double Dribble: when a player dribbles a second time after his/her first dribble has ended.


B: Balance-have 2 feet set, shoulder square to the basket.  Have knees bent, be relaxed.  Hold the ball with fingertips only, spread and relaxed.  Use opposite hand as a guide. 

E: Eyes-Aim for the rim, and look before shooting.

E: Elbow-shooting elbow should be under the ball close to body, pointing at the basket when shooting.

F: Follow-through, exaggerate the follow-though with arm fully extended and snap wrist toward basket and downward.  There should be a backwards spin to the ball.


Dribble the basketball approaching the basket at an angle (for a right-handed lay-up) pick up the ball, jump off of left foot, bring your right knee up and follow through with the palm of the right hand high in the direction of the intended target. Reverse hands and feet for a left-handed lay-up.


Components of physical fitness that can be improved through regular participation in basketball:

Cardiovascular Endurance: is the ability to perform prolonged, large-muscle, dynamic exercise at moderate to high levels of intensity. 

Agility: is the ability to change directions and levels quickly and efficiently.  An example exercise involving agility is the shuttle run. 

Coordination: is the ability to move two different body parts simultaneously with purpose and direction.  An example exercise involving coordination is jump roping.

Speed: is the ability to move swiftly from one point to another.