How to Shoot a Free Throw with One Hand

Certain things in sports appear as if they should be really easy, but they actually are not, such as making a three-foot putt in golf and bunting in baseball. Similarly, basketball has its very own version, the free throw. This also seems really easy and one may think that it may not require much practice. However, the reality is a bit different. Many Hall of Famers simply couldn’t master the art. The idea of a free throw includes taking an uncontested shot from 15 feet. Here’s how to shoot a free throw with one hand.

Things Required:

– Basketball
– Basketball hoop
– Foul line (or mark 15 feet in front of hoop)


  • 1

    Place your dominant foot right behind the free throw line. If you are a left-handed, then you should place your left foot behind the line or the right foot if you are right-handed. You can then place your non-dominant foot a couple of inches behind the toe of your dominant foot. This is the same technique that you use for a jump shot.

  • 2

    You can now bend slightly at your knees. Again, you will find this motion mimicking how you shoot a jump shot.

  • 3

    Take the ball in your hands and hold it as you normally would to make a shot. That means your dominant hand is under the ball and your other hand is resting on the side of the ball, acting as a guide.

  • 4

    Look towards the rim and imagine the ball dropping over the front rim of the basketball hoop, like you were tossing an egg in the basket.

  • 5

    Raise the basketball higher and come to a balancing point. Remove your guide hand from the basketball so now just your dominant hand is under the ball.

  • 6

    Shoot the free throw using just one arm. Remember the old adage of "waving goodbye" to ball as you release it. Remember to keep your shoulders straight and give a good follow through. Repeat this for the second free throw if it worked for you.

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