What is ISO in Basketball? (Completed Guide)

There are various techniques and tricks that usually make basketball exciting and better. Many team players use different types of tricks so that they can score and win their teams the matches. You cannot expect to win the games without forming a proper strategy with your team that you can actually implement in the game. As basketball is a team sport, coordination is a must thing that should be followed throughout the game. If we talk about a specific technique, called an ISO, which you might have heard on the internet or even saw on the TV, so it is, and how can it help you score? Let me tell you what is ISO in basketball in simple words.

ISO is a technique in basketball that stands for Isolation. The player who uses the ISO technique goes one-on-one with the opponent player by isolating all of the other teammates to score the points.

If you think this trick is pretty simple and it will be a piece of cake for you to use, you have not understood it correctly. You should be good enough to take on the best defender of the opposing team, that too single-handedly. Not only that, but you will also have to score, or your whole effort will be wasted within seconds.

Also Read: 10 Steps to Become an NBA Referee?

What happens when a basketball player decides to go with ISO?

What is ISO in Basketball

You might now have a glimpse that what ISO is in basketball. But to understand it deeply, you will have to understand how the scenario changes when a player decides to go with ISO. So the thing that happens when a player decides to go with ISO is that the player who is going to perform ISO signals his team to clear up the court along with the opposing players. This scenario can also be called Isolation, and this is the actual reason behind the name of this technique. As soon as all the players step aside from the way of the ISO-performing player, that player takes on the defending player one-on-one.

This is where the real fun starts! If the player opts to go one-on-one with the defensive player that is significantly stronger than him, the player can get into many difficulties trying to score. Not only that, but the ISO could also fail if you choose to go ISO with the wrong player, and your team can get into an even worse position than before.

That is why it is always better to go ISO with the defensive player you know is weaker than you. This will help you increase your confidence, and you will be able to tackle the defender better than ever before. But do not ever miss that particular chance to score from the ISO as, at that time, the whole team is dependent on you. So if you don’t want to embarrass yourself in front of your team members, opposing players, and the fans, take the decision wisely for the best results on the court.

What are the best moments to play ISO in basketball?

I might have worried you a little with the above paragraph, not embarrassing yourself by choosing to go with ISO in the wrong scenarios, so you might now be thinking that what are the best moments then, right? The great thing is, there are some best moments that you can use to play ISO in basketball and let your team win the game. But again, your common sense should also work in that time as you will have to observe the situation and see if it is a good time or not, even if I state the best moments. So let’s get started!

1. Just before the ending time

If you play or watch basketball with full enthusiasm, you would know how tense the basketball games can become at the ending points. When the clock proceeds to enter the finishing zone, every player gets in a situation that no one can describe. The offense tries to score as many points as possible, and the defense does its best to stop the offense at all costs. This is the point that you can optimize for you and your team’s benefit! ISO will unquestionably work best when the opposing team is panicking at the eleventh hour. But make sure that you really opt for the ISO when the game is actually about to end. This technique can also backfire if you try to go for it before 30-40 seconds from the ending, as the opposing can also dispose of you if you fail to score. Then the rebound might not be that merciful for your team, and you can also lose the game because of that ISO you performed before the actual time.

2. Weak opponent

When you get the chance to face a weak defender who you know is weaker than you, that crucial moment can also be the best time to perform ISO. The opponent team will be left with no choice to let the weaker opponent defend you, and you will then get the best chance possible. But it is vital that you must if your opponent is weaker or not. Because sometimes, or many times, defenders prefer not to show off what they are capable of until the tight time arrives. So what if the defender decides to show off his trick under the sleeve as soon as you decide to go for ISO? It might turn out bad for you. So yes, never underestimate your opponent and observe all the abilities that a defender has got.

3. When you are consistent!

Being consistent in basketball means that you score points every single time you get the possession for consecutively two or three times. Most of the players get massive encouragement when they start to score the points. This helps the players to boost their morale and get the confidence that they have never got. In that situation, ISO can perfectly well as the player performing the ISO will have confidence and consistency that he is carrying from the past moves. But you will also have to encourage yourself and believe in your abilities to give you an even further boost and make the ISO successful.

4. Whenever it deems fit to you!

As we have already checked the best possible situations to perform ISO in a basketball game, it is now up to you to observe the situation. As I have stated earlier, observation can play a key role in making you successful in basketball. So whether or not you get into the situations mentioned above, you will have to find one that can work out well to perform an ISO. But it is not possible for a beginner to observe the whole game plan on the court, but if you have got enough experience, you will be able to think your brains out for the best solution for your problem.

How to improve your ISO abilities?

We have already gone through how you can use ISO in different situations in basketball, but what if your skills are not strong enough to cope up with this trick? You will obviously have to learn it and get better at it to perform better. So try out the methods mentioned below, and you will surely see improvement in your playing style.

1. Play solo

You might now know that ISO is performed one-on-one with the opposing defender, and then you have to score by dodging him. So how to tackle this problem? You will have to start playing solo and practicing yourself when no one is on the court. Another best course of action for you here is that you can opt for a single player from your team and then practice with him one-on-one. It will help you understand better how you can dodge and score while playing one-on-one with the other player. But do not forget to choose an actual defensive player who knows how to defend. It will help you, and you will automatically know how defenders think and act while going one-on-one during the game.

2. Dribbling and grip

As you are going one-on-one with the opponent player, the only option left for you is to dribble past through the defender and score. So do you have enough dribbling skills? If not, then you will have to improve them. The player who performs ISO in the match is considered the best man of the team, so it would be weird for the best player not to know how to dribble efficiently.

Along with the dribbling, you will also have to make your handling and grip better. There is no chance of losing whole possession when you are performing ISO because once you do that, you will have to pay for it through several situations. You can quickly improve your handling skills and make your grip sturdier by practicing on the court and observing how you perform while moving in unexpected ways.

3. Mind grooming

Panicking or wrong decisions are what can ruin your ISO trick during the game. That is why you cannot allow both of these things in the game. But it is possible only if you know how to calm yourself and think with an open mind. Instant decisions can indeed do well for you, but wrong decisions can cost you even more. So groom your brain in a way that can help you make better decisions while playing.

The Verdict

Basketball is not actually a game where you can use the same old pattern to play different games. You have to come up with various strategies and tricks that are innovative and hard to tackle for the opponents. Only this way can you proceed towards your journey towards a successful basketball career.

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