What Are The Official NBA Rules?

There are some rules and regulations of the National Basketball Association (NBA) that you must need to maintain strictly if you are a professional basketball player. Or even if you are a beginner level basketball player, then you must know the rules. The International Basketball Federation (FIBA), who is the governing body for basketball internationally, has been determining and managing these rules that you need to apply while playing basketball. Let’s check out some of the basic rules first, and then we will proceed to the other regulations.

What are the New NBA Rules

For more information about Basketball Game is Everything You Should Know! we have full explanation about that question.

  • You can throw the ball in any path, and you can do this by using your one or both hands. 
  • You can hit or smack the ball in any direction as well. And in this case, also you can use either one or both hands. 
  • The team which scores the most point will decide as to the winning team. 
  • You cannot run by holding the ball. You need to throw it from the position or spot you catch the basketball from. When catching the ball as you run, there will be only an allowance. 
  • You can’t use any of your body parts to catch the ball except your hands. 
  • Foul will occur once you strike the ball with your fist. And also, tripping, pushing, holding, or shouldering to the opponent players will count as a foul. 
  • A goal will be made once you throw the ball into the basket from the ground. Even if the ball stays at the basket without dropping, then it will also consider as a goal. 
  •  The referee will be the evaluator of the game 
  • The game will divide into two segments, and each segment will contain 15 minutes with 5 minutes of break. 
  • If one of the teams makes three sequential entangles, then it will count for the goal for the opponent team.

Besides The International Basketball Federation (FIBA), NBA also the authority that formulates the basketball rules. Let’s check out some of the rules and regulations that they have updated in recent times.

  • For each of the player foul limit is 6
  • The game clock will stop after the last 2 minutes of the period and the overtime
  • Match referee is responsible for evaluating the delay for any game violation 
  • Overtimes will be for 5 minutes 
  • Per over time there will be two timeouts, previously there were three timeouts 
  • Timeouts periods will be the same whether televised or not
  • After the fifth foul per period of the game, there will be a bonus free throw
  • Five players are allowed on a free throw

There some other rules that you must also have to consider while playing basketball and Let’s check out the rules below –

1 NBA Court

The length of the court is one of the vital basketball rules. When constructing a court, you have to follow a specific dimension. The length and width of the court should be 94 and 50 feet. The three-pointers line should be 23 feet 9 inches, and the lane should be 16 feet wide.

2. 24-second shot clock

The 24-second shot clock is another rule. Once you possess the ball, you will have 24 seconds to attempt for a shot. You can’t take extra time.

3. Timeouts

In a game, both the teams must have 60 seconds timeouts. Two timeouts will be permitted, and each 20 seconds timeout will last for every game played.

4. Flagrant and fighting fouls

During an NBA game, you can’t fight from the bench. Once you are on the bench, you are not allowed to get off the bench to help your teammates. If you show this type of behavior, then you will have a suspension for the next game and even a fine. As a player, you might not want to face all these. Flagrant fouls are also not accepted, and it happens when you make unnecessary contact with your opponent players. You can be suspended too for these types of occurrences. 

All foul rules apply to every player. When you play basketball, then touching or tripping will consider as foul. No matter if you are an offensive or defensive player, foul will apply for every player. You can’t touch the ball while it is on the rim or being headed towards the basket. And one more thing to note down, that is, you can’t hit or kick the ball by using your fist.

5. Rules for the defensive players

In this regard, there is one rule that you need to follow. Touching your opponent player will consider as foul. As a defensive player, you need to avoid all kinds of physical contact with the opponent’s offensive players.

6. Rules for offensive players

There are five main rules to follow. 

  • You need to dribble the ball by using your one hand. As an offensive player, you can use both hands whenever you use the pivot foot, where you move your one foot, and the other foot remains constant. 

  • While dribbling the ball, players’ hands must be on top of the ball. You can’t carry the ball, and if you do that, it will consider as “carrying.”

  • Backcourt violation is another thing to consider for an offensive player. You must follow this. When a player crosses half of the court, then they can’t go back unless if a player knocks the ball back. 

  • As an offensive player, you can turn one time during the dribbling that usually occurs after a short pass. To be more precise, it means when you stop dribbling the ball, you can’t start a second time. If you do this, you will lose the ball to the opponents. 

  • The ball should stay in bounds. As you will have the control of the ball, you need to keep in bounds so that the other teams will not have the control of the ball.

Basic rules of the basketball game

As a trainee, you must know some of the basic rules of the basketball game. To be a professional player, you must obey the rules. And once you start following the rules during the practice session or a practice match, then your chance of becoming a competent player in the future will increase.

Duration of the game

Duration is essential that you need to keep in mind—the game compasses with 4 phases with 10 minutes each. Extra 5 minutes will add if no team can win within the stipulated time.

The objective of the game

You also should know the objective. The team will be the winner who scores more points. So once you play, your aim should be to make more scores. You must need to have the intention to put the ball to the opponent team’s basket as much as you can.

Number of players

Maximum 12 players can take part in the game. At the same time, each side will have five players inside the court. The other remaining two players will act as a substitute.


When you play, you will want to make scores for yourself. But you must need to know in which manner you need to create scores. There are two different ways to make three altered points. If you make a score beyond the three-point arc, then you will earn thee points for that. If you score from near the basket, like – from inside the three points arc, then you will get 2 points. And lastly, if you will get one point once you make a score from the free-throw line.


You might have a question in your mind that what is shot-clock. Well, this is the maximum time a team attempts to make a shot after processing the ball. In this game, one side will have 24 seconds to crack a chance. And offensive players will not remain in the vital restricted areas for over three repeated seconds.

Moving the ball

There are definite guidelines that you need to pass the ball. Before passing the ball, you need to take two steps without dribbling the ball. Aside from this, you can dribble the ball from one point to another or pass the ball to other players. After the ending, you can’t start dribbling the ball again.  Another thing about moving the ball is once one team with the ball passes half of the court; they can’t cross back with the ball again.


As mentioned above, you already aware of how seriously foul can affect your team. While playing the game, you must ensure that you need to avoid the fouls to save the team points.  You will get banned if you make five personal fouls (any illegal physical contact with the opponent players). When someone from the opponent attempt a shot and you make a foul that moment, then it will cost three shorts from outside the arc and two shots from inside.

So these are all rules and regulations that you need to know and follow during the game. Not only from an ethical point of view, but you must also follow these rules to make the game more enjoyable and competitive as well.

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