Part of making communication happen is everyone speaking the same language! The terms below will help you as a player understand what your coach is talking about and will make it easier for the team to share ideas!

Areas on the basketball court

Check out this link for images that illustrate each of the areas on the basketball court.

The areas that all need to be understood are:

  • three second area (aka paint, lane)
  • half court line
  • sideline
  • baseline
  • block
  • hashes (first hash, second hash, etc)
  • elbow
  • free-throw line
  • the nail
  • free-throw line extended
  • top of the circle (top of the key)
  • wing area (freethrow line extended meets 3-point line)
  • corner
  • short corner
  • front court
  • back court
  • 3-point line

Game Events

For all of these “game events” there is a process that goes along with them. Understanding the process and knowing what to expect gives you less to think about.

  • Warmups
  • Tip Off
  • Jump Ball / Held Ball
  • Foul
  • Out of Bounds Sideline
  • Out of Bounds Under Basket
  • Free Throw
  • Half Time – changing sides
  • Timeouts
  • Substitution

Things Players Do

  • Pass
  • Catch
  • Dribble (forward, backward, crossover, different hands)
  • Double Dribble (oops!)
  • Drive
  • Shoot / Jumpshot / Setshot
  • Rebound
  • Layup
  • Box Out
  • Free Throw
  • Foul (on purpose for a reason)
  • Steal
  • Tie Up / Force Jump ball
  • Travel / Walk
  • Turnover
  • Triple Threat
  • Run
  • Defend the ball
  • Deny the pass
  • Back Court Violation
  • Check In to Game (see substitutions)
  • Trap
  • Help Defense
  • Help the ball handler
  • Screen
  • Pick
  • Throw it in (from out of bounds play) [“take it out”]