What Is the Signal for an Illegal Screen?

When it comes to the intricacies of basketball, one can’t overlook the importance of rules and regulations that govern the game. Among these are the signals used by referees to communicate various infractions. When the referee deems that an illegal screen has occurred during gameplay, a specific signal is employed to indicate this violation. Consequently, the referee expertly crosses their arms in front of their body, denoting the transgression committed on the court. It’s worth noting that this signal is also utilized in the context of an out of bounds call, showcasing the shared visual language referees employ to ensure fair and unbiased decision-making.

What Is an Illegal Screen in Women’s Basketball?

An illegal screen in womens basketball occurs when an offensive player fails to position themselves directly in the path of the defender, impeding their progress or preventing them from avoiding contact. This means that the offensive player must make a conscious effort to establish a proper screen by ensuring they’re directly in the defenders way. Failure to do so can result in a foul being called against the offensive player.

Furthermore, an illegal screen can also be called if the offensive player doesn’t provide the defender with an opportunity to avoid contact. It’s essential for the offensive player to allow the defender enough time and space to maneuver around the screen.

Consequently, referees play a vital role in identifying and penalizing illegal screens to maintain the integrity of the game. By enforcing the rules, they ensure a fair and competitive atmosphere where players can execute offensive strategies and defenders can effectively challenge them.

When it comes to football, certain hand signals can indicate a variety of penalties. One such signal, known as the illegal use of hands penalty, carries significant consequences. This signal involves placing one hand over the opposite wrist and extending the covered arm outward in a pushing motion. It serves as a warning to players and referees alike that a violation has occurred.

What Is Illegal Use of Hand Signal?

The illegal use of hand signal is a gesture used in sports, particularly in football, to indicate a penalty for using hands in an unlawful manner. When a player commits a foul by illegally using their hands, such as grabbing or holding an opponent, the referee signals this infraction by performing a specific hand signal. The signal for an illegal use of hands penalty involves placing one hand over the opposite wrist and extending the covered arm outwards in a pushing motion.

This hand signal serves as a visual communication tool for both players and spectators. It helps to clearly convey the referees decision regarding the penalty and ensures fair play within the game.

Furthermore, the signal for an illegal use of hands helps spectators, including fans and broadcasters, to comprehend the reason behind a penalty.

While the basic concept remains the same, there may be subtle variations in the specific motion or positioning of the hand. Officials and players are generally familiarized with these signals through training and the rules of their respective sports, ensuring consistency and understanding among all involved parties.

It’s purpose is to clearly communicate the referees decision, allowing players, coaches, and spectators to understand and respond accordingly.


When a referee identifies an occurrence of an illegal screen, their gesture speaks volumes without a single word needing to be uttered. By crossing their arms in front of their body, the referee discreetly conveys to players, coaches, and spectators alike that a violation has been committed. It’s worth noting that this particular signal shares a striking resemblance to the out of bounds referee signal, underscoring the paramount importance of precise, deliberate communication within the fast-paced and high-stakes world of basketball officiating.