The 7 Basic Rules of Basketball

Basketball is a sport enjoyed by people of all ages and abilities. Whether you’re shooting hoops in your driveway or playing a competitive game, understanding the basic rules of basketball is essential to enjoying the game.

Here are 7 Basic Rules of Basketball:


A team will consist of 12 players. Each team may have 5 players on the court at a time. If a team breaks this rule, they lose possession of the ball.


The ball must be bounced and dribbled with one hand while the other hand is used to guide it.  To dribble the ball, you must bounce it off the ground with one hand while using the other hand to guide it. As you become more comfortable with the ball, you will be able to increase your speed and dexterity. Remember, the key is to always keep your hand on top of the ball.


Score more points than the opposition to win the game. A field goals can be worth 2 or 3 points. Shots from outside the 3-point arc are worth 3 points. Shots inside the 3-point arc and worth 2 points. In the case of a foul, the fouled player may be awarded as many as two free throws which are worth one point each.

Ball Movement

A player cannot run with the ball; they must dribble it. If you want to move the ball down the court, you’ll need to dribble it. You can’t just run with it in your hands. Remember, when you’re dribbling the ball, you must keep your hand on top of it. And don’t forget, you can only take a few steps before you must bounce the ball again.

That’s one of the most important rules of the game. If you don’t dribble, you’ll be violating one of the basic tenets of basketball and probably won’t be very successful on the court.


A maximum of two steps can be taken after catching the ball before it must be dribbled again.  When you’re dribbling the ball, you can’t just let your arm hang- things happen too fast in basketball for that. You must keep your hand close to the ball, almost hugging it. And you can never, ever run with the ball or take more than two steps without bouncing it.

Double Dribble

A player cannot touch the ball with both hands at the same time while they are dribbling it – this is called double dribbling. This means that you can’t cradle the ball with both hands while you’re running. You also cannot start to dribble again after stopping. If you do, it’s a turnover! This is a violation and results in loss of possession.

Basketball Fouls

A foul is committed when a player touches another player in a way that is not permitted by the rules, such as pushing or holding. While playing basketball, you can’t push or hold. This is because pushing and holding can lead to unnecessary physical contact between players, which can cause injuries.  If you do, it’s a foul and the other team gets the ball and most likely free throws and the chance to score points.

So, there you have it—the basic rules of basketball. These are the basic rules of basketball – understanding and following them will ensure that you have a great time playing the game!

Of course, there are many more intricacies to the game and its rules, but these will get you started. If you’re looking for a court builder who can help bring your dreams of a backyard basketball court to life, look no further than Sport Court Northeast & DG Contracting Inc. Our team of certified professionals can help with every step of the process, from designing your dream court to installing it flawlessly.

Contact us today to learn more!

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