Being a good shooter is not enough to succeed in today’s fast-paced game. If you want to get noticed then you need to take crazy jumps and increase your vertical.
Think about it, most NBA superstars these days have serious athleticism and crazy jumping. Likewise, the players who get the attention of scouts at the high school and college levels are usually the ones who play above the rim…heck, who needs to throw the ball past a defender when you can just JUMP on him. , right?
Increasing your vertical jump can not only set your permanent position on the featured reel, but it will help you increase your explosiveness, speed, and agility in other areas of your game. At the end of the day, coaches love players who can dominate, and big jumps can allow you to dominate and take control of a game.
The following are recommendations to incorporate into your workouts to increase your vertical and get crazy jumps.
Plyometrics are some of the best exercises you can do to achieve a better jump, as they are a hands-on exercise designed to train your entire jumping mechanism and especially the fast-twitch muscles that are essential for developing explosiveness and a higher vertical. They are a proven vertical training method for all athletes, from basketball to volleyball to high jumpers.
While using plyometrics can give you a few extra inches, it will be hard to get airtime unless you combine it with weight training. Yes, you might see some guys dive that are stick-thin, but in general, the stronger your muscles, the more power you’ll generate and the higher you’ll jump.
The two best weight training exercises to go crazy with are:
- calf raises
These will work the main muscle groups of the legs (and the lower back in the case of squats) and the most important ones for jumping. Getting a solid full-body weight workout will help your jumps, but it will also make you a much stronger and more explosive player on the court… which is to say, a nightmare for defenders.
Try wearing ankle weights or a weighted vest during your training sessions to get used to heavier weight. Once you take them off, you’ll feel so much lighter, and this can only add an extra inch or two to your vertical.
Many people neglect the importance of training their abs to gain more inches on their vertical. Your abdominal muscles, as well as your back, are used a lot in jumping, so getting some solid abs work into your training program is recommended to get crazy jumps.
Don’t neglect your stretches either. This is a very overlooked factor in vertical jump training.
When you stretch, your muscles temporarily weaken…at which point they begin to repair themselves and become stronger, as well as being more flexible and less prone to injury.
The hip flexors are heavily used in the jumping mechanism and therefore regular stretching routines to loosen and strengthen these muscles are essential to improve jumping.