What is Holding in Basketball & How Does It Work?

There are always some certain rules and regulations that make a sports fair and even for everyone. If there are no rules and laws to follow, every player will do what they can to win the games. This can surely destroy the spirit of the game, and no one would actually want that. That is why some crucial rules and regulations are made to make everything better for everyone. But when it actually comes to basketball, it is definitely one of the sports in the world that has relatively more rules and fouls to offer. That is what makes it even more complicated. But there is one specific foul that is regarded as the Holding foul that seems to confuse everyone. So, what is holding in basketball?

The Holding foul in basketball states that the players cannot hold the other players by interfering in their way to compromise their freedom on the court. If any player does the same, a holding foul is given.

So did you understand how all the things work in the holding foul? If yes, then you were probably familiar with it already, and if not, then don’t worry, as I am going a little deeper to explain things. The only thing you will have to do is to understand them with an open mind so that you won’t have to face hurdles in your professional basketball career.

Also Read: What should be The Height of Basketball Hoop

How does Holding work in basketball?

what is holding in basketball

One important and very critical thing to keep in mind is that you cannot compromise the freedom of a player on the court in basketball. It is automatically counted as a foul. That is why the holding foul has been developed to proceed in the best way possible without creating unfair situations. But the thing is, can a player actually defend the ball if he is not interfering in the other player’s way? A player can definitely defend without interfering in the player’s way if he is actually willing to.

A holding foul is not simply given to any player that is trying to dispossess the ball from the other player; the foul is given when the hands come in between. The hands of the other players should not touch the other player because they can result in compromising the freedom of the other player. Most of the players try to grab the body of the player or try to grab their hands so that the player could not take the right shot or simply could not pass the ball accurately.

Who usually commits the holding foul in basketball?

As we are talking about compromising the freedom of the other player, you would have now known that defensive players are the culprits here. Defensive players are the ones that usually commit the holding foul because they are the ones interfering in the offensive players’ ways. It is actually very unusual for offensive players to commit a foul of this type. Still, we are talking about basketball here, so scenarios can quickly change depending on the heating level.

So if you are an offensive player, you will indeed not have to worry about getting a holding foul, but you will have to vary the players trying to hold you back.

What happens when a holding foul is committed?

It is one of the things that you should definitely keep in check because you can get into a situation where you would be held back by another player. If a player commits a holding foul against you or any of your teammates, the referee instantly stops the game. As a result, the team remains with the ball, and they do not lose possession.

In other types of fouls, we see that the team losses possession when a foul is committed. But this happens only when the foul is committed by the team that already has the possession. But in this case, the foul is committed by the team that does not have possession, but they are trying to get it in illegal ways.

What signal does the referee give for the holding foul?

Do you know what signal does the referee gives when a holding foul is committed? If not, then you should because it can be awkward for you to ask your teammates what is going on the court and why the play has stopped, right? Whenever a holding foul is committed in basketball, the referee simply holds down his own fist.

This action of the referee shows that the player has committed a holding foul. As we all know, holding foul is given when the defensive player uses his hands to stop the movement of the player. So the referee is simply portraying the same by holding his own fist.

If we talk about if it is actually easy for a referee to detect the holding foul, then yes, it is pretty straightforward. Unlike the other fouls in the basketball, the referee does not have to take note of the time and other things in order to give the holding foul. Instead, the referee has to see what the movements of the defensive player against the offensive player are? If the defense is deliberately touching the offense, the referee can simply offer the foul without any problems.

Is there any other type of holding foul in basketball?

We have now discussed the holding foul for the defensive players, and we have also seen how it works. But now the precise question is, is there any other type of holding foul in basketball other than the one committed by the defense? So the answer is yes! There is another type of holding foul, but this time, the scenario is reversed. This foul is usually committed by the offense rather than the defense, and I am going to explain why. But again, this foul can also be committed by anyone on the court as it solely depends on the situation.

What is the other type of holding foul in basketball?

Whenever a player tries to keep the ball in hand without a single movement, it is considered as a foul. We cannot call it a holding foul, as this name has already been given to another foul, but as it is caused by holding the ball in the hands, this name can also be given to it.

How long are you really allowed to hold the ball in basketball?

One promising news here is that there is a specific time period given by the officials for which the players can keep the ball in hand without the movement. The bad news is, this period can be a little tricky and can also get you into some problems if you don’t take care of it in the proper manner. So precisely for how long can you hold the ball in basketball?

When inbounding, any player who has the ball has a maximum of five seconds to hold the ball; within this period, the player can keep the ball and do whatever seems fine, but as soon as this period is over, it will be counted as the foul. To avoid it, the players simply have to pass the ball to their teammates or merely take a shot to score.

This violation is pretty common in basketball because players simply can’t keep track of how long they have been keeping the ball to themselves. That is why it is necessary to have an open mind and attention to detail while playing the game so that you won’t have to face problems during the game. But wait, if you think this rule is over here, then you might be wrong.

What are the 3 Seconds and 8 Seconds rule in basketball?

The 3-second rule is specifically applicable to the defending players. This is because the defending players cannot stay in their opponents’ area for more than 3 seconds. Yes, three seconds is undoubtedly a concise period, but it is what it is. And yes, it does not matter if the defense has possession of the ball or not; the 3-second rule implies every time when the defendant enters the opponents’ zone.

If we talk about the 8-second rule, it is actually pretty easy to keep track and the time period is also massive. In the 8 second rule, the players have to move the ball through the half-court line within 8 seconds. In simple words, the players cannot keep the ball within the court line for more than 8 seconds, and they have to move it in order for the game to keep going. The reason why this rule is considered easy is that because crossing the court in 8 seconds is quite easy, but it can definitely become harder in certain scenarios. That is why it is better not to take anything easy because it is basketball we are talking about.

The Summary

I have now thoroughly explained how both of the holding rules work in basketball. It is now your job to see which rule applies in your case the most so that you can study it and make yourself better in it. Just know that, aside from the skills and abilities, an open mind and great attention also play a vital role if you want to be successful in basketball.

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