basketball Foul & Violation Signals

VIOLATIONS

  • Walking/Travelling. Taking more than a-step-and-a-half without dribbling the ball is travelling. Once you stop dribbling, you can choose a pivot foot and are allowed to pivot around on that anchor foot. Moving your pivot foot once you’ve stopped dribbling is travelling.
  • Carrying/palming. When a player dribbles the ball with her hand too far to the side of or, sometimes, even under the ball.
  • Double Dribble. Dribbling the ball with both hands on the ball at the same time or picking up the dribble and then dribbling again is a double dribble.
  • Held ball. Occasionally, two or more opposing players will gain possession of the ball at the same time. In order to avoid a prolonged and/or violent tussle, the referee stops the action and awards the ball to one team or the other on a rotating basis.
  • Goal-tending. If a defensive player interferes with a shot while it’s on the way down toward the basket, while it’s on the way up toward the basket after having touched the backboard, or while it’s in the cylinder above the rim, it’s goal-tending and the shot counts. If committed by an offensive player, it’s a violation and the ball is awarded to the opposing team for a throw-in.
  • Back-court violation. Once the offence has brought the ball across the mid-court line, they cannot go back across the line during possession. If they do, the ball is awarded to the other team to pass in-bounds.
  • Time restrictions. A player passing the ball in-bounds has five seconds to pass the ball. If she does not, then the ball is awarded to the other team. Other time restrictions include the rule that a player cannot have the ball for more than five seconds when being closely guarded and, in some states and levels, shot-clock restrictions requiring a team to attempt a shot within a given time frame.

FOULS

Personal fouls: Personal fouls include any type of illegal physical contact.

  • Hitting
  • Pushing
  • Slapping
  • Holding
  • Illegal pick/screen — when an offensive player is moving. When an offensive player sticks out a limb and makes physical contact with a defender in an attempt to block the path of the defender.

Personal foul penalties: If a player is shooting while being fouled, then she gets two free throws if her shot doesn’t go in, but only one free throw if her shot does go in.

  • Three free throws are awarded if the player is fouled while shooting for a three-point goal and they miss their shot. If a player is fouled while shooting a three-point shot and makes it anyway, she is awarded one free throw. Thus, she could score four points on the play.
  • Inbounds. If fouled while not shooting, the ball is given to the team the foul was committed upon. They get the ball at the nearest side or baseline, out of bounds, and have 5 seconds to pass the ball onto the court.
  • One & one. If the team committing the foul has seven or more fouls in the game, then the player who was fouled is awarded one free throw. If she makes her first shot, then she is awarded another free throw.
  • Ten or more fouls. If the team committing the foul has ten or more fouls, then the fouled player receives two free throws.

Charging. An offensive foul that is committed when a player pushes or runs over a defensive player. The ball is given to the team that the foul was committed upon.

Blocking. Blocking is illegal personal contact resulting from a defender not establishing position in time to prevent an opponent’s drive to the basket.

Flagrant foul. Violent contact with an opponent. This includes hitting, kicking, and punching. This type of foul results in free throws plus the offense retaining possession of the ball after the free throws.

Intentional foul. When a player makes physical contact with another player with no reasonable effort to steal the ball. It is a judgment call for the officials.

Technical foul. Technical foul. A player or a coach can commit this type of foul. It does not involve player contact or the ball but is instead about the ‘manners’ of the game. Foul language, obscenity, obscene gestures, and even arguing can be considered a technical foul, as can technical details regarding filling in the score book improperly or dunking during warm-ups.

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