What Is The Hardest Part Of Basketball? (All You Need To Know)

Basketball is a very complex sport with many challenging aspects. Every player must learn a myriad of skills to be good at the game, and every player must take time to focus on the most challenging aspects of basketball to become a successful player, but what is the hardest part of the sport? What should players be focusing on?

The hardest part of basketball is different for every player. The hardest skill to perfect in the sport is passing, and the hardest skill to learn is play-making. Other challenging parts of the game are shooting, layups, footwork, timing, post game, rebounding, free throws, and blocking.

There are so many skills that go into playing basketball well that it is almost impossible to identify the specific hardest part of the game, but there are several skills and aspects of the sport that are very challenging, and players should work on these more than others. Let’s explore the most challenging aspects of basketball.

What Is The Hardest Part Of Playing Basketball?

The sport of basketball is complex and challenging in almost every way. Every player who enters the sport must learn several intricate skills for them to play competitively.

Basketball is widely considered to be among the most challenging of all team sports, especially when played at a high level, but what is the hardest part of the sport? What makes the sport so difficult? Is there even a generally accepted ‘most difficult’ aspect of basketball?

The truth is that the most difficult aspect of basketball is different for every player. Every person in the sport has their own strengths and weaknesses, as well as their own talents, their own preferences, and their own preferred skills to practice.

Every player is different, and therefore, everyone experiences basketball differently.

For some players, shooting is the most difficult aspect of basketball; for others, it could be layups, passing, dribbling consistently, or even footwork.

Some players struggle with speed. Some have trouble keeping their fitness level high enough to play the game without experiencing intense fatigue. There are so many aspects to the game that it is almost impossible to identify one most difficult aspects.

However, with that in mind, there are some parts of basketball that are generally considered to be harder than others. These parts of the sport include the following:

  • Passing
  • Shooting
  • Layups
  • Footwork
  • Timing
  • Post game
  • Play-making and court vision
  • Rebounding
  • Free throws
  • Coordination
  • Blocking

These aspects of basketball are considered by most players to be the most difficult to learn and execute well, but every player will always tell you the same thing: regardless of how much you practice any skill in basketball, when the lights go on, and the crowd is cheering, playing the game under pressure is always the most difficult part of the sport.

Playing basketball under pressure makes every aspect of the sport feel far more intense, and this environment causes players to make more mistakes than lack of practice or skill.

Which Basketball Skill Is The Hardest To Learn?

We have established that the most difficult aspects of basketball are different for every player, but is the same true for the specific skills of playing the sport? What is the most challenging basketball skill to learn to use well and generate success in the game?

There are several good contenders for the most difficult skill in basketball, especially skills that directly affect game results, but most players generally agree that the most challenging skill to learn in the sport is play-making.

The ability to plan successful plays relies on such an intricate knowledge of the game and the players that it is the most challenging basketball skill of all.

Very few players have a natural play-making ability, but the skill can. Learned it only requires many years of experience and game knowledge.

Play-making is the most critical skill in basketball, as it usually determines the outcome of the game. A player who has the ability to make good decisions on the court regarding their teammates and how they play is the player that will win the game for the team.

Not every player has the ability or the good court vision to be a good playmaker, but those that do are the most prized players in the sport.

Learning play-making is the most challenging skill because it requires the most knowledge of the sport and the players on the team, and it is not a skill that can be simply practiced as other skills, such as passing, can.

Editorial credit: Pavel Shchegolev / Shutterstock.com

What Is The Hardest Aspect Of Basketball To Perfect?

We have established that every player finds different aspects of basketball challenging, and play-making is the most difficult skill to learn, but what is the hardest aspect or skill in basketball to perfect?

Perfecting a skill in basketball requires immense practice and effort. There are very few players that ever perfect a skill in basketball. A perfect skill is the rarest component of the sport.

The most challenging basketball skill to perfect overall is passing. The ability to get the timing and leading right every time, combined with the challenges of passing under pressure, passing accurately, passing without breaking the rules of the sport, and passing at the right moment, are all immense difficult aspects of this skill to learn.

Learning to pass well means learning many small skills that add up to the larger skill that is good passing, which means that perfecting this skill is almost impossible.

Very few basketball players possess the ability to pass perfectly every time, and those that do are among the most sought-after and highly revered players in the industry. Perfect passes result in game wins.


The hardest parts of playing basketball are learning to perfect passing and learning the skill of play-making. Outside of these skills, every player has their own strengths and weaknesses that make the most difficult part of the sport different for every player.

Understanding your own strengths and weaknesses as a player is key to learning to play the game well. Every player must overcome their weaknesses and play to their strengths to become a successful player, which means conquering the most challenging parts of the sport.


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