At the ends of the court, the baseline/endline runs from sideline to sideline behind the backboard. They are generally situated four feet behind the basket and have a width of 50 feet. The baseline is used for defining shooting distance; if you want to make a three-pointer, you should be from at least half way between the lines.
The baseline also serves as a reference point for determining personal fouls and technical fouls. If a player commits a personal foul by going over or under the baseline, the referee will signal for a technical by waving his arm horizontally in front of him. If this action is not taken, then the player will be called for two more personal offenses which would result in him being ejected from the game.
On defense, players stay within the lines to prevent opponents from gaining advantage by having extra space to shoot from or move around in. If a defensive player goes over the baseline, he has committed a flagrant 1 foul and the referees will signal for a five-second violation while pointing to the center of the court. If the opposing team advances the ball during this time, they can take their free throw and increase their odds of winning. Otherwise, the defending player can continue down the court without a penalty.
Players cannot go beyond the baseline with the intent to impede an opponent's attempt at a shot.
1. On a basketball court, the baseline is the endline. There are two baselines, one on each side of the court, each four feet behind the backboard and running from sideline to sideline. The term "baseline" also can refer to the entire length of these lines.
Baseball has three bases: home plate, first base, and third base. In football, there is only one base: the goal line. In basketball, there are two bases: the sideline.
The baseline divides the court into three areas: top of the key, middle of the key, and bottom of the key. A free throw shooter has the option of going either left or right. If he goes left, that is called his strong side. If he goes right, that is called his weak side. The term "strong side" refers to which hand is used to shoot the ball. The term "weak side" refers to which foot is used to shoot the ball.
So, the strong side of a player facing the basket is determined by who he takes the shot with. If it's him, that's his strong side. If not, that's his weak side. The term "taking the shot with" means that you are the person on whom the player focuses his attention when he shoots the ball.
The baseline runs parallel to the net and marks the length of the court. In doubles play, it measures 36 ft. (10.97 m) and 27 ft. (8.14 m) for men's and women's games, respectively. In singles play, the baseline is 12 feet (3.66 m) from the net.
The net is a raised platform with ropes attached to posts at each end. It stands on the sidelines just outside of the playing area. In tennis, the net rises to about chest height for the player serving, so that he can hit a ball over it. For his opponent, it is lower than the service box so that he cannot reach it with a volleying action.
In football, the net is made of metal bars with rope between them. In basketball, the net is a low wall with a roof made of mesh wire or plastic panels. The net does not have any effect on how easily a shot can be scored in soccer or ice hockey; they are called goals even if there is no net.
In addition to being able to serve better, players on changeovers can move back toward their own goal while still keeping control of the ball if it goes out of bounds behind them. This gives them more time to think about their next move before their opponent does.
The sidelines are the two lines that run the length of the court. The width of the court, which is generally 50 feet wide, determines their position. They, along with the baseline and end line, determine the size of the playing field. The sidelines contain several items important for the game of basketball: the timer, which tells time during free throws and other timed events; the official, who controls play and manages scoring; and the whistle, which signals various events during a game.
Basketball has a few unique rules that set it apart from other sports. One of these is the use of the sideline as a scoring zone. A player can score from the sideline, but they cannot shoot the ball. This is because a player who is out of bounds is considered to be away from the basket, so they cannot shoot. However, if a player goes past all three points and touches the ball outside of the arc, then they become eligible to shoot.
Another rule is that there can be only one legal player in the frontcourt at a time. If a player is off the floor, such as being held by a teammate, then they are not allowed to enter the game. If a player enters the game before being taken out, then this is a foul and the other team gets a free throw.
In addition to these rules, coaches are also required to be on the sidelines.