How to Paint Basketball Courts

Three teenage boys (16-17) playing basketball, elevated view

Having a basketball court on your driveway or in your yard is great but when the court is painted authentically, it makes it even better. Painting a basketball court is relatively easy: Most of it is straight lines and just a couple of arcs.

Painting a Basketball Court

Climb to the rim and, using a tape measure, find the center of the rim. Lower the plumb bob and put a mark on the ground where the plumb bob points. Also use the plumb bob to make a mark on the ground where the front of the rim is. These marks are the points from which measurements will be taken.

Measure six feet from the spot marking the center of the rim to the side and make a mark there to outline the lane. Also make a mark six feet from the center of the rim to the other side so the total width of the lane is 12 feet.

Draw a line 13 feet from the front of the rim that will be the free throw line and act as the top part of the rectangle that makes up the lane. Connect the line you drew in Step 2 with the free throw line and complete the lane by extending the lines in Step 2 to the out-of-bounds line underneath the basket.

Take the string measure six feet from the chalk. Find the middle point of the free throw line. Draw an arc from one corner of the lane away from the basket to the other corner of the lane to make the free throw arc. You can add dashed lines inside the lane to complete the circle for a more authentic look. Just make a six-inch segment of the arc, then leave six inches and continue until the circle is complete.

Take the string and using the full 19 feet, 9 inches, draw a complete arc around the court starting straight out to the side of the hoop all the way around to the other side of the hoop. Where the arc ends on either side of the court, a straight line is extended to the baseline. The top of the 3-point arc should touch the top of the free throw arc if drawn properly.

Tape out the lines drawn in chalk with the painters tape. The lines drawn are the outside edge of the lines that will be painted. The lines should be at least an inch thick to be easily noticeable but 1 1/2 inches would be more standard. After taping out the outside of the lines, use the tape measure to measure the inside edge of the line and place another strip of tape to mask out the line completely.

Paint in the areas between the painters tape with the color you chose. Let dry according to the directions on the can before removing the tape.


For a more authentic look, painting in the lane a different color than the lines can add a bold touch. Also free throw tabs and the block can be added to the side.


Make sure you purchase paint made for outdoor and concrete use. Other types of paint may not adhere as well or may cause players to slip.