What Is A Loose Ball Foul in Basketball?

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Once there is any loose ball on the basketball court and the players make an effort to gain possession of the ball, a foul can be committed even though none actually was able to control the ball. Being spectators, we sometimes want to question that call since it did not appear to be a foul. So what rule are you asking for?

What is meant by a loose ball foul? A loose ball foul will be committed in the game of basketball, once the ball becomes free for any of the 2 teams to recover for possession. This can happen following an erratic rebound from a shot while one particular player from each of the 2 teams goes for the ball in an aggressive manner, and commits a foul in the process.

In basketball, loose ball fouls are quite common and they can confuse the majority of us. There are several instances of loose balls which can happen in certain circumstances. Below, we have mentioned some of them.

Examples of Loose Ball Fouls

The first instance would be when the ball strikes the rim following a shot and the players make an effort to get hold of the rebound and the ball exits the key area thus making a loose ball. Following this, the players then run after the ball racing for a position for recovering it. Refs can call it a foul depending on the contact.

One more instance of a loose ball foul can be when the point guard of one team dribbles the basketball up the court while the defender of the other team succeeds in poking it loose. Now, the ball being free, the players try to gain possession by diving at it. The ref might call it a foul or allow it to play out. On some occasions, it can lead to a travel violation while diving for the basketball because of the sliding as well as rolling around on the court.


A third instance happens to be 50/50 balls which are thrown down the basketball court where a couple of players from both teams leap for the ball, and in that case, any type of contact will be awarded a foul. According to some experts, one should consider it as a loose ball since each of the players has an identical opportunity for gaining possession of the ball.

It can be a tough call to make when it comes to a loose ball foul, typically, once the ball becomes loose and it is possible for any of the 2 teams to recover, and it might initiate plenty of contacts while fighting for the possession of the ball.

In general, basketball can be one of the most difficult sports to officiate, and this might be a tough call to make particularly while the ball happens to be on the line and it will be better to not make the call whatsoever. It can become extremely heated as well as physical once bodies strike the floor from diving.

Below, we have mentioned the different types of basketball fouls that can happen at present.

Basketball fouls

Basketball happens to be a game which doesn’t permit any type of violations or fouls. In spite of this, players often end up fouling one another or getting into unlawful violations. Here, we have mentioned some fouls which will not be permitted in the game. If these fouls are committed by the players then either they are going to lose the ball’s possession or free throws will be awarded to the rival team.

Personal Foul

The most common type of fouls in the game of basketball happens to be personal fouls. However, these types of fouls aren’t that serious. Once 2 players commit personal fouls at one another, it is

called a personal foul. It can be any violation which is made once a player pushes, grabs, holds or even charges the opponent.

In defense, it is possible for a player to use his chest only and shift to the sides for stopping his rival. No contact can be made with the arms, knees, shoulders, or even hips whatsoever.

While possessing the ball, a player will not be able to push any opposing defender who is in the position already. In case any defender or offender has committed 5 fouls, he is going to get out of the game.

Technical foul


This type of foul will not be related to any kind of physical contact. It will not happen between 2 players. A technical foul will be committed when the players who are sitting on the bench, the entire team or the coaches commit fouls against any player, coach, spectator, or referee by behaving offensively like taunting, making use of offensive language, throwing a chair, hitting, spitting, fighting, and so on.

A technical foul is also committed when the game is delayed. In case a team commits such type of foul, necessary steps are going to be taken against it.

Flagrant foul


When an excessive, unnecessary, or violent foul is committed by a player it is known as a flagrant foul. In case any player fights unnecessarily with an opponent player resulting in hitting, punching, shoving, and so on and injures him badly or performs any type of physical harm, a flagrant foul will be charged.

It is possible to eject any player from the game because of committing a flagrant foul.

You will come across 2 types of flagrant fouls – flagrant foul 1 as well as flagrant foul 2. The referee can call it a flagrant foul 1 or 2 which will depend on the situation of that foul.

Double foul


In basketball, a double foul will be committed once an unlawful interruption is made during the game. A double foul is made once 2 players of opposing teams foul one another simultaneously. These fouls will be recorded as the personal fouls of the players. No free throws will be awarded and no team will get any penalty. The match is going to resume from where it was halted because of the foul.

In case any player is found committing double fouls on more than one occasion, he will be ejected from the match, and the game is going to continue.

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