Basketball Rules and Regulations

Last Modified Jul 15, 2022 11:30 GMT

If you buy a book related to the rules of a basketball game, there will be hundreds of things in it that you will hardly encounter in daily tournaments. So this article aims to make you aware, without any confusion, of the basic rules followed in the game of Basketball.

This is indeed a complicated topic, not only because there are so many rules in basketball, but also because these rules change depending on where we are playing the game. For example, the regulations in the FIBA (International) games differ from the those followed in the NBA. Until 2000, FIBA used a 30-second shot-clock as compared to the NBA's 24-second shot-clock.

General Rules:

1) Basketball is a game in which five players from each team play at a time on the basketball court.

2) The aim of the players to score a basket by putting the ball inside the hoop elevated 10 ft above the ground.

3) The team with the ball in possession is the team on the offense, and the opposite one is the team on defense.

4) Once the offensive team has the ball, they have 24 seconds on the shot clock to shoot it towards the basket. If the offensive team either fails to shoot the ball or fails to touch the rim or make the shot, a 24-second shot-clock violation is granted to the offensive team, resulting in a turnover. The shot clock was introduced in the NBA in 1954.

5) If the offensive team fails to bring the ball up the court (beyond their backcourt) within eight seconds, an 8-second violation is called, resulting in a turnover.

6) There can be a total of 12 players on the team roster, but only five can play at a time.

7) The game of basketball consists of four quarters of 12 minutes each, and if scores are tied at the end of it, there is a five minutes’ extension called “overtime”.

8) The scoring rules are simple. If you shoot from behind the arc, you will get three points whereas shot from inside the arc receives two points. Also, each free throw is worth a single point.

9) There are a variety of ways to score 1, 2, 3 or 4 points on a single possession. For eg., While any shot within the three-point arc is considered to be worth 2 points, if the shooter is fouled during the upward motion of the shot, and the shot goes in, an "And-1" occurs. The shooter is granted 1 free-throw (worth 1 point) and if the shooter makes the free-throw, a three-point play is said to be completed.

10) Each team has a fixed number of team fouls, and each player has a fixed number of personal fouls. Exceeding the team-foul limit (5 per quarter in NBA) results in bonus free-throws for the opposing team while exceeding the personal foul limit (6 per game in NBA) results in ejection.

11) A player playing on the court can be substituted from the players on the bench by the coach. A coach can make an unlimited number of substitutions.