Foul shooting is one of the most important skills to teach a basketball player in order to improve their all around game. Many players are poor foul shooters because they are never taught the correct way to take a foul shot. A foul shot is a lot different than any other shot in basketball and it requires the most concentration. Here are some important steps you can take in order to teach basketball foul shooting to children and adults of all ages.

Position the player at the free throw line with their legs shoulder width apart. Place his/her right or left leg a few inches forward depending on what hand they use to shoot. Right handed shooters would place their right foot forward and left handed shooters would place their left foot forward.

Stand under the basket and pass the ball to the player at the free throw line using a bounce pass. This will help create a routine and mimic a live game. During the game, the player at the foul line will be given the ball by the referee from under the hoop.

Have the player take three dribbles with their shooting hand and spin the basketball. Encourage the player to use the same routine each time they step to the foul line.

Have the player bend his/her knees to a 45 degree angle and then follow through and release the basketball with his shooting hand pointing towards the hoop. Follow through is one of the most important parts of free throw shooting. Encourage the player to practice following through without the basketball to develop form.

Repeat this process until the player develops a rhythm. Rhythm is essential in foul shooting. Practice foul shooting as often as possible and make it a priority during practice.

Create a distracted and pressured environment during foul shots once they’ve got the hang of normal foul shooting. In game time situations, players will need to be able to make foul shots in front of loud crowds and during pressure situations. Consider rewarding the player or team for a certain amount of foul shots made during training and disciplining them for missed foul shots i.e. run a lap of the court.

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