Rules of Basketball

The rules and regulations of basketball govern the gameplay, procedures, equipments and officiating of basketball. Although several of the fundamental rules are the same throughout world, variations of basketball rules do exist. Most of the governing bodies or leagues governing basketball in North America, including the National Basketball Association and National Collegiate Athletic Association create their own rules. The Technical Commission of FIBA or International Basketball Federation determines the regulations for international basketball. Most leagues operating outside North America essentially make use of the FIBA rules system.

The Original Basketball Rules

The original rules of the game was invented and published by James Naismith in 1891. These rules are very different than the ones used today to govern the game. Some of these rules have been mentioned below:

  • A player can throw or bat the ball in any direction using one or both the hands.
  • A player is not allowed to run with ball. The player has to throw ball from the location from which he grasps it. On the other hand, allowance is made for a player who catches ball while running at a decent speed and is unable to stop.
  • The ball has to be held with the hands and no part of the body or arms can be utilized for holding the ball. A player cannot shoulder, strike, hold, push or trip an opponent player in any way. The first violation of this important rule by a player will be counted as foul. The 2nd violation will lead to disqualification of the player as long as the next basket is being made. A player can get suspended for the entire game if it is believed that he had the intent to injure an opponent player. No substitution will be allowed in such cases.

Rules Of Basketball

Naismith's regulations did not indicate how many players are allowed to be on court. In 1900, it became standard to have five players. The substituted players were not permitted to enter the game again. In later years, some of the players were permitted to enter the game again. Substitutions became unlimited when the restrictions on substitutions got removed in 1945. From 1949, the coaches were permitted to address the players during time-outs.

The players were originally disqualified after committing the 2nd foul. This limit was extended to four in 1911 and then five in 1945. This practice still continues in standard basketball games where the duration of the game is kept 40 minutes. If the duration of the game is extended to 48 minutes, like in the National Basketball Association matches, a player is disqualified after six fouls.

Restrictions on possessing ball was introduced for the 1st time in 1933, when it was required by the teams to move the ball over center line within 10 sec of getting the ball; this rule was applicable until 2000. In 2000, FIBA brought down the time requirement to 8 seconds with NBA doing the same in 2001.