|Height of Release|
Three factors determine whether a shot will be successful. These are the speed of ball release, the angle of ball release and the height of ball release. It has been shown mathematically by Brancazio (1981) that shots that are released further from the ground are more likely to go through the basket. This is because a higher release increases the size of the arc through which the ball can travel and still go through the basket. Brancazio (1981) gave the example of changing the release height of a shot from 2.13om (7 feet) to 2.74om (9 feet), for which the width of the arc that would result in a successful shot increases by 17%!
In the diagram below, the blue 'scoring band' associated with a release height of 2.74 m (9 feet) gives a margin for error 18% greater than the red scoring band.
How can this information be utilised? The obvious answer is that players should be encouraged to develop a shooting technique that has a high release point. There are two elements to this. The first of these is to release the high with respect to the body i.e. above the head. This can be achieved by flexing the shoulder, which raises the elbow. The second way to increase release height is to raise the body as high as possible - usually by jumping from the floor - and releasing the ball close to (but not after) the top of the jump.