by Wong Jeng Teng
In a fast-paced game like basketball, every second and shot attempt counts. That’s why when a free-throw is awarded, it could make or break the game for you and your teammates. The pressure is on!
Here’s how you can increase your free-throw accuracy and score for your team:
Be mindful of the free-throw line
Make sure your feet are clearly off the line before you take your shot. If you’re going to jump, also be sure to land off the line, or a violation will be called against you.
Singapore Slingers' Ng Hanbin (right) demonstrating to myActiveSG.com presenter Samantha Low what it means to be mindful of the freethrow line. Photo: SportSG
Be in a shooting position
Have your knees slightly bent, feet apart, and keep your eyes on the front or back of the rim. Singapore Slingers guard Ng Hanbin revealed that he usually likes to dribble the ball three times after he gets into position, before he takes his shot.
Keep your posture straight
Maintaining a straight posture is important to ensure that your shot does not sway to a particular side. As you are taking the shot, make sure your body does not lean to the right or left, and this will increase your chances of pulling off a more accurate shot.
Singapore Slingers' Ng Hanbin showing the right technique to have a proper hold of the ball before the free throw. Photo: SportSG
Get a proper hold of the ball
Start off by holding the ball in front of your torso. Hanbin advises players to hold the ball with their fingers instead of their palms. Doing so will allow a player use their fingers to release the shot, rather than pushing the ball out with their palms, as the former will produce a straight shot.
Keep your posture straight and follow through with the shot movement, making sure that your shooting arm stays pointed at the target even after the ball has been released. After shooting, you should end off with your arm straight, and your wrist relaxed.
myActiveSG.com presenter Samantha Low tries her hands at a free throw at the OCBC Arena, Singapore Sports Hub. Photo: SportSG
Don’t be discouraged if you’re not making most of your shots at first, because it’s normal for everyone to miss when they’re starting out. Remember that professional basketball players such as Stephen Curry, who has made a name for himself as one of the greatest free-throw shooters, boast many years of practice and experience.
Repetition and practice will help you be more confident and comfortable with the free-throw movement, so be sure to practice, and you’ll see the results!
If you’re interested in learning the fundamentals of basketball from Singapore Slingers coach Neo Beng Siang and players such as Hanbin, sign up for the ActiveSG Basketball Academy!