How to Play Basketball


Playing basketball is a great way to get your heart pumping and stay healthy. Aside from the many benefits of playing, basketball also teaches a lot of fundamental motor skills. It encourages physical activity and helps you develop a sense of community. You may even learn some new skills or improve on the ones you already have.

The goal of the game is to score points for your team by making a basket. If you miss a shot, all players compete for the rebound. However, your team cannot get the rebound if they are not dribbling or if they are not on defense.

Depending on the league, free throws are awarded. Each player gets two points for a made basket and one point for a free throw. If a player makes a free throw, his or her team gets an additional three points. This depends on the number of fouls committed in the game.

Most basketball leagues have a shot clock. Usually, the clock starts at 24 seconds and runs for about 35. After that, the ball is given to the other team. There are a few restrictions when the time is up. Normally, the offense can’t stay in the key for longer than three seconds without attempting a shot. In addition, the offensive player can’t be blocked by a defender in a downward trajectory to the basket.

The team with the most points at the end of four quarters wins the game. The team with the most points in the overtime period also wins the game. Overtime periods vary, but usually last five minutes.

When a player makes a basket, he or she gets to call out the number of points. He or she can also pass the ball to an opponent to help them make a basket.

Basketball is played on a court that is rectangular in shape. The perimeter is painted with a shaded area around the rim. Players on the opposing team are assigned a spot to defend. Once the hoop is in position, they pass the ball to a teammate who shoots an assist.

Teams can switch goals at the half. For example, the team with the most points in the first half might switch to the other team with the most points in the second half. All teams are allowed to substitute players, but only up to five.

A flagrant foul, or an intentional foul, is a violation of the rules that a player commits. A flagrant foul results in a penalty for the other team. These include holding, elbowing, blocking, tripping, and other contact.

Another common violation is double dribbling. During double dribbling, the player dribbles the ball with both of his or her hands. This is a violation, because the player automatically gives the ball to the other team.

Other violations are traveling and backcourt violations. A traveling violation is a violation when a player travels the entire length of the court, or when a player crosses the midline. Backcourt violations are also a violation, because a player who is closely guarded can only have the ball for up to five seconds.