Basketball IQ: 10 Ways to Improve Basketball Skills


    Basketball IQ is the ability to play the game instinctively and to cope up with any changes. It is mainly a combination of instincts, technical skills, experience, game awareness, and understanding. It may not always put a number in the scoreboard or help an individual on-paper statistics. But it has a direct impact on the game, which allows the team to win.

    A high basketball IQ is the most important skill a player can have during a game. We can see that a chess master can think 3 to 4 moves ahead of the other players during competition. These separates them from the competition and are titled as the best player.

    Similarly, high IQ players can predict 2 to 5 seconds of the game ahead. They can read the game and their opponent's eyes to take on charge immediately. In the following part of the article, we will focus on IQ for basketball and how to improve it. Keep reading.

    What precisely is basketball IQ?

    Basketball Intelligent Quotient is mainly to pick up on small clues during the play. These might help the player to expect what's going to occur next with a higher chance. Some players can instinctively predict or understand what is going to happen. But in most cases, it requires a sharp eye, experience, & profound knowledge of the game.

    High IQ players always seem to be in the right place to help their team win even in the most challenging time. They still play calmly and smartly and make the right decision for the team. In other words, the best players can understand what will happen in court before others.

    Still now, when good players and coaches are asked to say something about how to improve IQ, most struggle to give the right answer.

    The main objective of this article is to clear doubts regarding basketball playing IQ. It gives a detailed overview of basketball intelligence & how one can improve it.

    Characteristics of players with high IQ in Basketball:

    A high IQ is the most significant feature a player can have. There are some specific characteristics that all the players with high basketball IQ possess. They are:

    • They always play professionally.
    • The players automatically know which move to make and when.
    • They don't waste their energy unnecessarily by running through the court.
    • The players can cope up with the game changes instantly.
    • Always keep their eyes on each corner of the court to know every one position.
    • Knows when it is time to pass, move & have the ball.
    • The player always knows how to make the ball's best use when they have and when they don't.
    • Best players are always very innovative with their ball-handling techniques & on-court moves.
    • Use their knowledge and experience to make the smartest play.

    Some players possess these characteristics instinctively. Other players can achieve it over time with a good amount of practice.

    Good IQ player versus great IQ player

    Basketball intelligence differs from player to player. Some of the main difference between a good IQ player and a great IQ player are stated below:

    • Good players see the entire play, whereas the great ones see the next play.
    • Good players make the extra pass, whereas the great ones make the right pass.
    • Good players love to be challenged, whereas the great ones love to be coached.
    • Good players play good, whereas the great ones take the game to the next level.
    • Good players defend for their team, whereas the great ones try to break the opponent's defense.

    10 ways to improve basketball skills and IQ:

    Nowadays, every basketball player needs to have a good basketball sense to get a chance in the top-class league. Like, If we look at the NBA players, we can see that it has plenty of high basketball IQ players. Thus one can understand why basketball IQ is vital along with other knowledge of the part of the game.

    The fastest way to improve one's intelligence is by combining measured practice and putting oneself in-game situations. Advanced basketball skills come in several steps. Below are 10 of the essential ways to improve one's IQ in basketball:

    1. Attention:

    Attention to detail in the court is one of the most crucial points for gaining more basketball skills. To an ordinary fan, a basketball match is between two different teams to put the ball in the other basket.

    But to a skilled basketball player, the game is more like a chess match. That's why a player during the training and practice has to pay attention to detail to each move, play, and other basics.

    2. Knowing the game properly

    A player has to know the game properly to improve their IQ. They have to be. They have to spend a lot of time to be familiar with all the game basics to master it. For that, they can watch the match of good players to see how they play, pick clues, and practical skills.

    3. Watching the game carefully

    The players have to watch every team and player's game to see how they play, defend, and shoot the ball. Even watching the game helps a lot to improve the skills. But a player also has to practice to acquire it. Even coaches use recorded games of the best players to teach their players to acquire a solid basketball intelligence.

    4. Learning from other players

    A player can learn a lot from other players who are good at basketball. By watching other players or even by learning from teammates, one can improve a lot.

    5. Practice

    As the saying goes by, "Practice makes a man perfect." The practice has no bounds in improving one's skills. No matter how much one watches or learns, one has to practice a lot to be a great player.

    A player has to get out and practice to get better. Because only by practicing one can know about their strengths and weaknesses. By knowing one's weaknesses, one can work on it to make it his strengths. Therefore, instead of just watching, one has to get into the court to practice.

    6. Focus

    A player has to acquire the talent of being able to keep their focus intact all the time. Without a good guide, one tends to miss even the smallest clues that are giving a signal. A good focus of the game can turn the game a lot. So a player has to work on it to acquire it.

    7. Improving skills

    Even if one has good knowledge about the game but lacks the general skills. So, by working on the gym or the fundamentals, one can improve on it.

    Improving the skills will also allow one to think less about actions; instead, the muscle memory will take over automatically. When one focuses less on their activity and more on the game, their IQ improves automatically.

    8. Awareness

    To improve the understanding of game situations, the player has to study what the great players do.they can learn about when to pass or to take the ball. The more aware a player can be, the more a coach can trust the player.

    9. Gaining knowledge from your experience

    By practicing and playing in the court's matches, one can know about their weaknesses and mistakes. Even great players can make mistakes as humans are erred to error naturally. So every player must learn from their mistakes and experience. The more a player can gain knowledge from his experience, the more he can apply to his game to get better.

    10. Handling situations

    A player with a high basketball IQ is very good at handling any situations. As basketball is a fast-paced game, the game direction can change at any second. So, a player also has to acquire the quality of keeping calm to cope with any changes. Only by keeping calm and motivated, a player can play smartly and lead his team to victory.

    To learn about something that one loves them more pleasure than pressure. That's why a player passionate about the game will not need much time to work on it. So, by practicing hard and following the above-stated ways, one can improve their basketball skills and IQ as well.


    I hope this article helped you to gain knowledge about basketball skills and improving IQ. It is equally as important as any other part of the basketball game.

    Basketball is a fast-paced game, and playing it is quite a challenging task. On top of that, players with high IQ can calculate the game situation quickly. Besides, they are well familiar with their teammates' and opponents' strengths, weaknesses, and responses. These are often a cause between a win and a loss for the team.

    The level of competition is increasing at an incredible pace with each passing day. That's why it is a must requirement for every player to acquire it if he doesn't have it instinctively. The more a player has IQ, the more he can play better and has the chance to get selected in the best league in the world.

    Overall, basketball IQ is a requirement for every player who needs no telling to succeed in his life.