It takes practice to be able to capture good images consistently. In many ways, the camera is just like a musical instrument. It's best to practice daily. Ongoing practice makes working the settings seem automatic so that you can concentrate on the subject in front of the lens.
Since returning from Florida two weeks ago, I've only shot a handful of pictures. And, it's been several months since I shot a sporting event.
Yesterday, I decided to practice my photography by shooting my nephew's recreational basketball game. During the first half of the game, I had very few keepers. The camera's auto-focus was having trouble locking onto the subject and I was getting very soft images. I blamed it on the low light in the gym (ISO 1600, 1/1000, f/2.8)--even though I've shot in far worse lighting conditions in the past.
During halftime, I reviewed all of the settings on my camera and lenses and discovered that I had made a ridiculous mistake. I had the camera set to single rather than continuous servo auto-focus! As a result, the focus was not tracking any moving subjects at all.
After making the adjustment to continuous focus tracking, the majority of the remaining images were sharp. I finished the session with this image:
The bottom line is that it's not only important to keep practicing, but it's also important to practice the different types of photography on an ongoing basis.