Basketball is a game whose primary goal is to put the ball into the basket. However, what is often forgotten is that part of the game also involves stopping the opponent from scoring. You can't always have a good shooting night can always put in the effort to play good defense. Here are tips on how to play better defense.
1) Play defense with your feet and not your hands - This means that you use your feet to follow your opponent and use your body as an impediment between him and the basket. Try not to use your hands too much as it would result in fouls.
2) Never foul a jumpshooter - Just place a hand in the face of the jumpshooter and do not foul him. Usually jumpshooters are also good free throw shooters so giving them freebies is not a good option.
3) Observe - Players who are not in the amateur or professional leagues usually just have a limited number of offensive moves. Try to watch your opponent and watch how he executes those moves and where he does them. You would notice that more often than not, he would have sweet spots where he often takes his shot. Try to make a gameplan to disrupt that such as preventing him from getting there in the first place.
4) Ball denial - Even the best of scorers cannot score without the basketball. Try to deny the ball from the player by staying in front of him and by deflecting the incoming pass.
5) Improve your lateral movement - This can be achieved by doing suicide exercises by moving laterally and touching the floor and going back and forth in doing so. Good lateral movement helps you keep yourself in front of the player you are assigned to guard.