The Art and Science of 45/11

In the basketball world we recognize the artistry of the game. When played the right way it flows seamlessly from one possession to the next. Basketball is smooth like jazz, it’s improvisational, free reign, and overall a truly beautiful experience. Jazz bands are in tune with one another and rely on each other to perform their role to the best of their abilities and to follow through with what was practiced. Much like a band can’t just walk onto a stage and expect to sound good, a basketball team can’t just walk on the court and expect to win against their opponent. Preparation and good chemistry is important.

While the chemistry is the camaraderie built through the sport, this art of the game is orchestrated by science. At Noah Basketball, we took the next step of applying that science to discover the primary factors affecting the consistency of a jump shot: arc, depth, and left/right position. By tracking hundreds of millions of shots, measuring entry angle, depth and left/right positioning, we cracked the equation revealing the perfect metrics of 45/11. 

But what is 45/11? Simply put 45/11 are the perfect measures for two of those primary factors that affect the consistency of a shot. Aiming for a 45-degree entry angle into the rim, a shooter can balance a wider area of entry for the ball while also reducing the margin for error. For many years it was taught that a higher arc equals higher chances of success, the reality is that no one can perfectly shoot the same arc every time, and the higher the shot the more small inconsistencies in arc create large inconsistencies in depth. When shooting at the suggested 45-degree angle, the spread in depth is lowered significantly.  

Eleven represents the goal of hitting the center of the ball 11 inches past the front of the rim. 

Young players miss short five times more often than they miss long because most players believe aiming for the swish in the center of the rim is the only way to guarantee a make. However, there's actually another guaranteed make for shots deeper in the rim, known as back rim and down, or BRAD shots. Since both a swish and a BRAD shot will score, the ideal spot to aim is right in between. Aiming deeper in the basket for the 11-inch mark increases your chance to score, giving you a mix of both guaranteed makes with more forgiveness for any slight variation in your shot

Next time you hit the gym for a workout, focus on where you place your shots. Remember that a 45-degree entry angle minimizes the spread in the depth of your shot, and aiming a little further back than the center of the rim at 11 inches increases your chance of making shots consistently.