How to Shoot a Basketball Better Without Going to Any Gurus

In the game of basketball, it’s shooting which requires ceaseless practice for hours after hours to become a great offensive threat for the opponents. That’s why, like so many other young basketball players, probably you also wanna learn how to shoot a basketball better. As you know, getting on the right position is very important to make a successful shot, so you should know that there are some other techniques to take your shooting skill to the pro level.

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But, it’s really frustrating that there are thousands of techniques all claiming to be the best way to shoot that spherical ball. However, don’t worry, you’ll see that almost all the great shooters start their shooting with some basics. So, today, we’ll start learning from those basics and then will dive deep into the realm of advanced shooting fundamentals.

How to shoot a basketball as a beginner

As I’ve promised to start from the beginning, so it’s my duty to mention that you’ll need a ball and a basketball hoop to start shooting and now I’m gonna show you one of the most effective basketball shooting basics.


beeff technique

No no, I’m not a chef and also I didn’t tell you to cook beef. But, BEEF is a fun way to describe or remember the shooting method. When toddlers start taking their lesson on shooting, as I’ve seen, on the very first class, the coach teaches them this acronym which means –

  • B) – Balance
  • E) – Elbow
  • E) – Eyes
  • F) – Follow-Through

Easy, right? This is one of my most favorite shooting methods. Without proper balance, it’s impossible to make even a bad shot and the proper combination of these 4 things can lead you to shoot your ball better.

This BEEF may seem to be too easy to you as ABCD appears with no difficulties to an elementary school student. So, if you’re looking for something advanced, feel free to scroll down to the advanced shooting section below.

All the tips here are actionable and this resource is promised to improve your shooting knack. So, if you’re also promised to shoot with better confidence and higher accuracy, and want to become a top favorite basketball superstar, then consider paying attention to all of these tips.

As you know, it’s impossible to learn English without ABCD, so important this BEEF technique is to learn the lay-ups, hook shots, floaters, jump shots, free-throws, bank shots and other shots in the game of basketball. Balance usually helps you to shoot in rhythm. But, later on, proper balance will help you bring an art to your shooting form with more confidence. Elbows help you to make the perfect arc to throw the ball into the accurate trajectory, your eyes help you to stay focused to your target and follow through helps you to explore and improve your shots.

Form Shooting:

You’ll get an evidence here that this resource is promised to improve your shooting skill. You know, I know and they also know that Form Shooting is one of the most easiest basketball skill improvement drills. But, who practice it months after months and only for 60 minutes a day without any break?

Most of the beginners show their interest to this drill at best for 7 days and as a result, their shots never frighten their defenders. Yes, it’s the most boring drill because it needs extreme patience to shoot the ball thousands of times from 5 – 7 feet around the backboard. Look at this pro –

Again, it’s very easy to make shots from such distance. However, if you really want to be a formidable shooter, you’ve to do the same thing in such an interesting way which won’t make you feel bore even you practice this drill for hours at a time. Try to understand the following images.

Drills to improve your BEEF

Here, the first image represents a full basketball court with a mezzo forte player position with defense. To improve your shooting skill, you’ve to study the player positions and the lines on the court. To ensure a better practice environment, you can create a practice court as it’s shown in the 2nd picture and following the 3rd picture, you can draw as much shooting position as you can on your practice court.

Now, start shooting not only from the 5 – 7 feet distance, but do it also from all of the positions you’ve drawn. Try to shoot at least from 30 positions a day. It’ll make you confident to shoot from any distance on your real game. Moreover, changing the position after every 5 – 10 minutes will keep the devil of monotony thousand miles away from your practice court. It not only will improve your shooting, but also will develop your shooting mechanics and muscle memory which are very important to shoot better.

Break The Record:

Promise to break the records. A bit confused? Okay, I’m not asking you to break the world records today. Just start keeping the record of your shots today. This process is also interesting and no extra gadgets will be needed to keep record of your shots. Most probably you’re reading this shooting guide on a mobile device.

Switch on the timer or stopwatch of your mobile, then stand on the nearest position in your practice court and start shooting. If you’re alone on your practice court, then each time you’ve to pick up the ball yourself. Consider it as passing on the real court.

However, shoot from one position only for 5 minutes and then change the position. Your mobile device can tell you the time after each 5 minutes. As this is the first day, try to utilize at least 10 positions. It’ll take 50 minutes. Oh ho, also don’t forget to count your shots from the very beginning.

Suppose, from your 1st position, you’ve shot 20 times within 5 minutes. In your 2nd position, you should try to make at least 21 shots. In this way, on your very first day, if you shoot from 10 positions, next day, you should use 11 positions. Just like the same way, you can keep record of your daily to monthly shots.

Try to break your record each day, each week and each month. If you can make 455 shots in your first week, next week it should be at least 456. This way, keep breaking your own records until for 12 months. Remember that there’s no shortcut way of becoming a great shooter. If you don’t break your promise, then within 3 to 4 months, you’ll see how challenging it is to break your personal records.

Stop Taking Off-Balance Shots:

Don’t be scared of missed shots. All the pro players made missed shots and then they learned the accuracy from those shots. However, to reduce the percentage of your missed shots, you’ve to put emphasis on balance. Here, your especial records will become more challenging. Take a few seconds to make yourself prepared for the shot, place your hand on the ball properly, take position (keep your feet at a comfortable distance without making them parallel) and finally fire the ball. Look at this picture.

feet position

Right foot is straightly forwarded to the rim, while left one is slightly bent. He actually creates a straight line between his left toes and right heel. For the left-handed players, their left foot should be straightly forwarded. Remember that proper stance can improve your balance. So, I highly recommend you to follow the stance of your favorite pro to be another pro and If you pick up the ball yourself, then it’s a good idea to dribble that ball to get on the right position to make your shots. The rules of balance at a glance – Keep your eyes on the basket, bend your knees and  hips straight down and create a beeline between your right heel and left toes.

Elbow Position:

Morning Shows The Day

So, without any confusion, you should start trying to shoot the ball keeping your elbow straight, neither pointing it outside like chicken wings, nor allow it be in the inside. At first, it may seem to be easy to basket the ball keeping your elbow slightly outside. But, remember that it’s not the proper technique to throw the ball though some of the world class shooters like Reggie Miller and Ray Allen didn’t take care of this technique. Look at this girl. She’s trying to shoot the ball following the proper techniques.

right elbow position

Observe her stance. Her elbow is just over her shooting knee. This is the right position of elbow. Again, there’s a 90 degree angle between her bicep, forearm and hand. Also look at her feet. Even her feet follow all the rules we’ve discussed above. And here’s an example of the chicken wings form which shouldn’t be followed –

wrong technique to shoot a ball

Wrist Position:

Your wrist also should follow the right technique. It should be bent back up to 120 degree angle so that the ball can easily rest in your palm. And don’t forget to uplift your shooting elbow up to your eye level while releasing the ball. Again, your palm shouldn’t be flat as it may mislead the ball. Just use your fingertips and finger pads to grip the ball and keep your fingers spread enough to control the ball and fire the ball only with your Index and Middle fingertips.

use fingertips to grip the ball

Keep Your Eyes on The Target:

aim small, miss small

An awesome quote on target from one of my favorite movies The Patriot. If your target is the backboard, you’re wrong, if your target is the hoop, you’re wrong again. So, think about your target. What should be your actual target? If your aim is to make a successful shot, then your target should be the center of the rim and your eyes must be on your target. To improve your focus on your target point, you can put a yellow hanky or any other bright colored stuff at the center of your rim. However, don’t be afraid of your defenders. If you commit to make a shot in the real court, just stay focused to your target and release the ball on the right time. And to be more authentic and more aggressive in your shooting, you can study the Dwyane Wade’s Pump Fakes.

dwyane wade fake shot

Hold Your Follow-Through:

Follow-through is the most effective diagnostic tool for you if you’re really promised to improve your shooting skill. Yes, it’s very effective as well as very important because a good follow-through can solve a lots of shooting problems. It helps you to study your own shooting form, identify the problems and to improve your shooting accuracy.

Maybe you know better, but to make it more comprehensible for the young basketball players – after releasing the ball towards the basket, letting the arm, hand, wrist and fingers stay out there just like posing for a photo shooting until the ball go in the basket or hits the rim is called follow-through in basketball. Hope, the following image will make it more clear.

perfect follow through

The ball definitely goes in that direction where it last left the hand and your follow-through can help you to identify that single part of your hand. In our shooting segment, very often, our coach used to make fun saying –

Hold your follow thru for a month!

Though it was a fun, but there’s no other way but to freeze your follow-through until the ball reaches the hoop if you want to be a giant shooter. It’ll help you to give a good touch to your ball, it’ll help you to soften your shot, refine your shot and also it’ll make you to shoot the ball a bit up rather than not at the basket. Another golden key for you as a bonus which certainly will improve your shooting –

Teach the shooting fundamentals to someone else. The person maybe your younger brother or your neighbouring kid who very often comes to your driveway to enjoy your shooting. You can start your lesson from the BEEF. If you consider doing this, it’ll force you to learn, practice and refine your shooting as well as overall basketball skills.

Did You Notice That
Every basketball player – from grade school to college, from high school to pro level – struggles with this. Even NBA champions also lose their sleep because of their missed shots. Sounds a bit depressing? But, it’s the reality. Though, I’m not trying to neutralize you, yet I’m telling you, because I’ve been there and I know how difficult it is to overcome the shooting struggles. Dedication is the first key to become a pro basketball shooter where most of the beginners fail to realize that “Ball is Life and Shooting is Work”. You’ve to sacrifice your sleep and pleasure to be such a world class shooter. However, now, as I know your willpower and want to help you to take your shooting to that dream level, so that I’ve represented some of the exclusive shooting tips below.

How to Shoot a Basketball Better | Advanced Shooting Fundamentals

All of the above techniques are the shooting base for the basketball players. After having a good amount of try to these technics, a devoted ball player starts looking for something more powerful and more effective. So, let’s go through these advanced shooting methods:

Know Thyself:

You’ve completed the beginning level of shooting. So, now you know very well that there layups, post shots, bank shots, jump shots, free throws, long 2s and 3 pointer shots. You also know the 5 spots on the court. Moreover, you’re also aware of the shot preparation, hand placement on the ball, feet direction, balanced base, keeping your eyes on the target, wrinkling your wrist, elbow position and follow through.

As you know, each spot on the basketball court bears the risk and opportunity equally, so, there’s no scope to think that due to their high percentage of success, close up shots are easier than the longshots. As you want to be a better shooter, you’ve to realize that the quality of your shots depends on your shot mechanism and confidence level and how confidently you make a shot off is more important than where you shoot from. So, know thyself and raise your confidence to improve your shooting and the only way to raise your confidence is to never stop shooting.

Redesign Your Mindset:

Mindset plays a vital role in the game of basketball. The fixed mindset is always a loser here. The drawbacks of this type of mindset is that because of this mindset, you’ll achieve a few small rewards and then you’ll start thinking that you’ve learned a lot and eventually you’ll stop learning, competing and even developing your skills. But, if you consider the ball as your life, then you’ll never stop learning, practicing and honing your skills. This type of mindset is called the Growth Mindset. Here’s the egregious differences between the growth mindset and the fixed mindset –

Redesign Your Mindset

Ask Yourself:

Do you know that a question can change your life? Can’t believe it? Okay, ask yourself why do you play basketball and who are you actually playing for? If your answer is correct, you’ll be definitely an ominous shooter against your defenders. But, remember that only 0.1% player can answer these questions correctly. However, don’t worry! You can get some clues in the above picture to answer these questions perfectly.

What Type of Player Are You:

There are only 2 types of ball players. Both of these players believe that ball is life. But, the first type of players offer their priority to their education, family, job and health. With the passage of time, they drop out from the world of basketball. Today or tomorrow, their basketball becomes their nostalgia. You’ll get about to 99.99 percent of the players in this category. They stop learning, practicing and competing.

But, the another type of players believe that they can learn better from basketball, they can bring much happiness to their family with basketball, they can achieve higher than a job with basketball and they can stay on a great shape only because of playing basketball. They ensure everything without leaving that globose ball. After surpassing a lots of real life blockages, a few of them get the chance to shoot at the NBA, WNBA, NCAA, FIBA and other elite baskets.

They never stop taking care of their ball and some of them end up teaching basketball as coach, some of them establish local basketball clubs, some of them leads the game as referee or umpire and others pump words out as the big fans or journalists. It’s really a great triumph to find out a respectable way to make a competent living from basketball without sacrificing your education, family and happiness. This post is for the second type of players because they never stop learning, developing and showcasing the basketball skills and they believe that they’re going to get finer with their age. Congratulations, if you get yourself in this type of basketball players!

Shooting is the Most Fun Skill:

Yes, shooting is another fun skill for the second type of players because they take it as a fun and don’t hesitate to make 1400 even more shots a week. What can be more interesting than making hundreds of successful shots each day? It’s really one of the greatest feelings to make consecutive free throws, layups, long shots and jump shots.

Be an Earnest Student of The Game:

A student never stop learning and practicing. As an earnest student you should also never stop practicing your shooting on your practice court even if you won nationwide championship or lost in your local court. Winning can temporarily boost your ego if you’re a player as well as failure may pull it down. But, if you think yourself as a student of this game, your ego will be inhibited, neutralized and completely exiled of your way. This conception will make you think that you’ve a long way to go.

Learn From Each Missed Shot:

As I said, never stop learning if you want to become a great basketball shooting star. So, don’t forget to learn even from each of your missed shot. Your follow through can help you to analyze your missed shots. Without having any reason, no shot can be missed. Trace that reason and try to kill it. So that, your shots won’t be missed again because of that same phantom. Don’t worry about time and don’t forget to remember that only enough experience can make you highly skilled at effectual shooting which ultimately gain scores.

Small Changes, Big Gains:

As I said earlier. Know thyself, study your performance and discover your own shooting form. A proper anatomy of your own game can help you to find out some small but crucial issues. Break down your complete shooting footpace into as much tiny segment as you can. To get more accurate anatomy, you can use the video recording system of your mobile device. Keep your phone on a suitable place >> start video recording >> get into your position >> make 4 or 5 shots >> go back to your mobile >> stop recording and that’s all.

Now, watch the video in slow motion. Watch only 5 seconds at a time. Analyze these 5 seconds. Go to YouTube and find out other basketball pro shooting video of your favorite shooter. Compare all of your first 5 seconds sequences to the same period of this pro video. In this way, compare these videos, identify your shortcomings, bring necessary changes into your shooting stance and prepare yourself for the big gains.

Forget The Shot Varieties:

As you know, all the gurus claim that their shooting form is the best, so, it’ll be extremely perplexing if you go to 2 so called shooting gurus at a time. If you don’t have any issue in your time and budget, it’ll be better for you to take lessons from such a couch many of whose students are now dominating the pro basketball courts.

But, if you’ve decided to follow this free resource, remember that I’m not gonna show you the best form. I’m here just to disclose some exclusive tips which will refine your shooting stance gradually and it’s only you who can take your shooting to your desired level. Hope, you’re decided to learn from here. No need to be concerned. You won’t be disappointed if you follow this guide honestly and sincerely.

Do you know how many types of shots are there in the game of basketball? No, no. No need to remember those shots now. Rather it’s better to forget all types of shots. Yes, sometimes we need to forget something for the sake of our betterment. To be more clear, if you know that there are several types of shots, it’ll force you to think that you’ve to learn all of those techniques. Which seems about to impossible for the beginners and as a result they lose their confidence.

But, if you practice a master tricks, which can prepare yourself to execute all types of shots, that’ll be finally amazing. Yes, now, I’m gonna represent a golden tricks of shooting before you. Go to your practice court. As you’re now going to learn the advanced shooting manners, so I can hope that now it’s nothing for you to make 1000 shots a week in your practice court. You’ve to make it possible before entering into the advanced level of basketball shooting.

Okay, as I know that I’m talking to an honest player, so, I believe that you’ve made one thousand of shots last week. The master tricks is nothing new. Just add one more form to each of your shot this week. This is, make your first shot from the ground and then try to shoot the ball keep your feet in the air. Yes, your second shot should be a jump shot. This time, you’ve to make 10 shots from each of your shooting position on your practice court. 5 ground shots and 5 jump shots.

jump shot technique

While making jump shots, don’t forget to use your off hand to ensure the perfect position of your ball on your hand and try to release the ball from the top position of your vertical jump. And again, don’t be scared of your missed shots. Now, it’s also known to you that there’s something to learn even in the missed shots. Hopefully, within 2 or 3 weeks, your missed shots will be sensationally reduced. The secret of making a jump shot is to keep your footstep and any other techniques just like your ground shot. Adding a simple vertical jump to your normal shot can transform it to a jump shot. However, the following video can help you to make your first jump shot.

Make a Routine:

As a human being, we’ve lots of duties and responsibilities and none of these should be overlooked. To get all of your responsibilities completed on time, it’s a must to make and follow a routine. None can become a pro athlete without following a routine. So, take it seriously though there’s no direct connection between your shooting and routine.

Never Lose Your Motivation:

A grade school student play basketball everyday, a high school student play this game regularly, a college student also love to play with an indoor or outdoor basketball. Moreover, all the pro players keep themselves busy in either playing or practicing this pretty sport. Are you worst than them or better than them? The truth is that you’re just like them. So, you’ve to keep yourself busy in playing and practicing this game if you really want to shoot the basketball like a pro. Occasional playing, watching pro basketball matches, visiting college basketball courts and playing with your neighbours can keep you motivated.

Advanced Shooting Drills

Here too, I’m different from the so called basketball shooting experts. Though they claim that they know some advanced drills to shoot the basketball perfectly, but, there’s actually no such drills to teach you how to shoot a basketball properly. If you ask them to show some of their advanced drills, you’ll see that they are showing you whatever you’ve already done either on your practice court or have seen on YouTube videos.

Trust me, it’s only you who can make the most effective drills to take your shooting skills to your long expected level. They can just outline an old method they know. But, shooting is a subject to be updated each day. Watch some shooting from the early 1970 and go to enjoy some live basketball matches. If you do this, definitely you’ll be able to identify the differences between the old and updated shooting forms.

To be more accurate, everyone has their own developed and exclusive shooting style. The shooting style of Stephen Curry is completely different from the shooting method of LeBron James. So, be creative and try to design your own shooting form and be another basketball role model. Your practice court is your coach, positions you’ve drawn on your court are your defenders, your ball is your teammate and your shot variations are your fans. Don’t forget to break your own record every day, every week and every month. Keep breaking your records for 12 or 24 months and then compare your shooting accuracy to any pro players. Most likely, you’ll be another pro basketball player by the time.

You know, it’s clearly a wrong step to go for the so called drills, which, I think, will do nothing but, destroy your focus. There are thousands of shooting drills which are followed by millions of players. But, how much of them can you memorize? Be honest and aggressive to break your records and practice everything you’ve learned here. If you can properly utilize all of your shooting positions on your practice court, if you can make successful jump shots from all of those positions, undoubtedly, you’ll be the number one shooter among your competitors and possibly of your time.

Some Crucial Facts To Shoot The Basketball

It’s a must to watch the elite games, it’s a must to watch the cuts from the NBA, WNBA or other striking matches, it’s a must to listen to the shooting tips of the elite coaches to improve your shooting. But, never change your form after developing it. Pro shooters shoot millions but all of their shots are performed on the same form. Of course, you’ve to choose an effective shooting form. Observe all of your favorite shooters, but choose only one of them to edify your own shooting form.

Another common reason, which leads your shots to be missed, is to shoot without enough arc. Instead of throwing the ball directly towards the basket from your chest leve, you should lift it up into the air. To fix this issue, you should keep your elbow at the perfect place while releasing the ball. “Elbow over Eyebrows” – remember this phrase while shooting the ball to ensure enough arc.

Again, you’ll get a lot of shooters who don’t mind to let their off hand or balance hand touching the ball while realising it. This bad habit always misdirect the ball. Remember that your balance hand should leave the ball near the point of throw and only your shooting hand should completely transact the shot. Be aware of these facts to improve your shooting.

A Few Common Shooting Questions

Almost all the beginners dig out some common questions. The questions are like – How many shots should I make in a week? What part of the hoop should I look at while shooting the ball? Which part of my hand should be the last to touch the ball when I shoot? Which direction should my feet be pointing? How high should I lift up my elbows?

These are the questions. If you don’t get the correct answer of these perplexing queries, your sleep may fly away and your cravings to shoot the ball might go in vain. But, worry no more. I’ve given all the answers here in this shooting guide. Just consider reading the guide again with utmost care and you’ll get all the appropriate answers of these questions.

It’s Not So Easy To Become A Great Shooter

You may think that they have become great because of their fate. Some of the so called shooting gurus also may allure you saying that they’ll easily make you a great shooter within no time. But, the reality is not so easy. None of the top celebrated shooters become eminent without secreting gallons of sweat.

You’ll need to work hard without affecting your academic education. You’ll have to practice hours after hours, you’ll have to continue your practice for years to come. After a long period of pursuit, you can achieve your most desired title – “The Great Shooter”. Nothing is impossible. A worst shooter of this time can also be a great shooter of the next year if he/she is truly dedicated to be so. Have a look at the biography of Moriah Jefferson and/or any of your favorite basketball celebrity to realize that how long did they take to become great and how hard did they work to become great.

If There’s a Will, There’s a Way

It may seem to you that I’m discouraging you as I’m telling you that becoming a perfect shooter is so hard. It’s my problem that I can’t tell any lie. However, my aim isn’t to dishearten you. I actually am trying to form a strong willpower inside you. If you go forward after knowing all these stiffness and hindrances, then nothing can stop you from being an illustrious shooter. You know the wise saying. So, strengthen your will today and someday your dream will come true.


To conclude, every great shooters has their own secret shooting techniques and there are several indefectible ways to shoot the ball properly. So, don’t change your basketball guru or coach over and over again and take a firm decision to practice the drills regularly. No need to know hundreds of shooting drills. Just keep shooting on your practice court. Start shooting from the nearest position, make ground shots and jump shots from each position, follow the basic as well as advanced shooting tips. This epic guide on how to shoot a basketball better is nothing if you don’t follow it properly and again, this same guide is everything to improve your shooting if you can believe it. Best Wishes!