Essay on Mechanics of the Basketball Free Throw Shot

Essay on Mechanics of the Basketball Free Throw Shot

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The free throw shot is one the most important shots in basketball. In fact, around 20% of all points scored in the NCAA Division 1 are from free throws shots (Kozar, Vaughn, Lord, Whitfield, & Dve 243-248). The importance of this shot increases later in the game, because free throws tend to comprise greater percentage of the points that are scored in the last 5 minutes than the initial 35 minutes by either the wining or the losing team (Kozar et al., 123-129). The free throw shot is considered as the easiest shot for a professional basketball player, as the player stands alone, 15 feet away from the hoop with no defense or distraction. The player needs to get ready target, prime the ball and shoot (Okubo & Hubbard, 2006). A successful free throw shot requires deep concentration, and most importantly good mechanics to take a perfect shot.
While a free throw shot does not seem like an action that needs a lot of movement, muscle groups and joints in a body work together in isotonic contractions, utilizing multiple muscle groups in creating the movement. A free throw shot engages elbow, hip and ankle extensors in addition to wrist and shoulder flexors. In the case of the knees, the joints are hinged and the movement starts with a flexion, preparing for the free throw. Quadriceps and hamstrings become the antagonist and the agonist. This movement happens as you utilize knee flexion so that the muscles work in pairs. Hamstring contraction pulls the joints which makes the individuals bend their knees. The next movement after the flexion is the knee extension. When the shooter releases the ball, the quadriceps is the agonist and the hamstring is the antagonist. The upper body sequence would be: extension of trunk, should...


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