How Long Is A Basketball Game: Do You Know Yet?

This article is for you if you’re new to basketball and want to know how long is a basketball game. The playing time for basketball in each league and the variables influencing it are discussed in the following article.  

What Factors Can Affect The Length Of A Basketball Game? 

A basketball match will have four 10-minute halves, according to the FIBA (International Basketball Federation), making the total playing time (excluding breaks) 40 minutes. 

However, a basketball game may go on for 40 minutes longer than the allotted time because of things like:


The game will last longer than usual due to overtime. Overtime occurs when the end of the game, but the score between the two teams is still tied. Depending on the league, each overtime is 4 to 5 minutes long and continues until there is no longer a tie in the score.


If the players commit a foul, the game must stop and wait for a sanction. The time it takes to throw the ball during a free-throw foul will be separately counted. As a result, the game’s length will increase as more free throw fouls are committed.

Fouls will prolong the game time.


A timeout will lengthen the duration of the game. Teams can meet during timeouts to discuss strategy, take a break, or release tension. Depending on the level of play, each timeout can last 60 to 75 seconds.


If a player has an injury, the playing time may be increased. When a player gets hurt, the game must be stopped. The stopping time for the injured player to receive medical care depends on each basketball federation.

Basketball match time is also affected by injuries

Commercial breaks 

Commercial breaks for advertising are common in professional leagues like the NBA. The match will be paused during the commercial break, making the actual time to complete the game longer. 

What Is The Average Length Of Basketball Games In Different Leagues? 

Basketball match times also vary between leagues, such as: 

NBA (National Basketball Association)

A typical NBA basketball match lasts 48 minutes, broken into four halves of 12 minutes each. There will be a break of roughly two minutes between each half, and a gap of about fifteen minutes will occur between the second and third halves. 

NBA games are usually longer than other leagues

WNBA (Women’s National Basketball Association)

A WNBA basketball match lasts 40 minutes, split into four 10-minute halves. A 15-minute break separates the first and second innings of the WNBA. The break occurs between the third and fourth innings and lasts roughly 10 minutes. 

An average WNBA match is about 40 minutes

NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association)

The NCAA basketball match time and break time are similar to the WNBA. Meanwhile, the NCAA’s free throw period differs from the NBA’s and the WNBA’s. The break can be prolonged to 20 seconds if the opponent makes the free throw, whereas it is 30 seconds if the player from the home team does.

High school

High school basketball games typically last 32 minutes, with four innings lasting 8 minutes each, shorter than professional leagues. In high school basketball, a halftime break typically lasts 10 to 15 minutes. 


The typical duration of an AAU basketball match is 32 minutes, broken into four 8-minute halves. The usual break lasts one to two minutes between the second and third innings and between the fourth and overtime. 

AAU basketball competition time depends on the age of the players


The timing of a basketball match may vary by league, country or may be influenced by several factors. However, the time is extremely well worth it because you will enjoy an excellent match to the fullest!

Refer to the following video for more information: 


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  • Dalvir O'Connor

    Meet Dalvir O'Connor, CEO and founder of Sportssio, boasts 15 years of experience in sports knowledge and analysis, backed by his Master's degree in Sport Psychology....

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