What Major Muscle Groups Are Used in Basketball?

Muscles that are engaged by playing basketball include the calves, gluteus maximus and thighs, upper body and core. Over time, muscle endurance, stamina and strength improve because of the running, shooting and jumping that is involved in playing basketball.

The front of the thighs, known as the quadriceps, makes the knee joint straight each time you sprint and jump. The hamstrings, located on the back of the legs, are engaged when squatting down to play defense or taking a shot. The gluteus maximus area becomes stronger due to the hamstrings hyper-extending the hips. The calf muscles work while running and jumping on the court. They help you keep balance and improve the vertical leap needed for shooting and rebounding.

Dribbling the ball engages the deltoids, triceps, forearms and biceps. Eventually, all of these muscles become stronger and enable improved shooting and rebounding. The core muscles, such as those in the abdomen, hips and lower back, are also strengthened while playing basketball. The erector spinae and abdominals maintain the trunk of the body. From there, the hip muscles create thigh movement in a forward manner. A strong core makes moving on the basketball court easier because of the efficiency of the muscle groups working together.