Many would have you believe you need genes from an athlete to inherit a great vertical jump or the latest high-tech footwear, this just isn’t the case. With a positive mental approach and a 360 approach to your training regime, you will be out jumping your rivals whether you play basketball, netball, or any sport which requires you to elevate yourself using a jumping technique.
In this article, we will go over five key tips to increase your vertical jump and surpass your goals.
1. Address your jump technique
Jumping is a skill, bottom line. This means that the way in which each element of the jump integrates with the next is extremely important. Not only are the positions in a jump important, but the behaviours are also critical to maximizing your physical power output. The easiest technique change to consider immediately is finding your Maximum Controlled Velocity. This means identifying the speed at which you can control most effectively through take off. More often than not, this means slowing down your approach speed so you’re able to accelerate through take-off and avoid slowing down with choppy steps. If you’re still having difficulty finding your most controlled speed, try shortening your approach to 2-3 steps.
Out of the thousands of athletes we’ve helped to jump higher with technique, the most common way to achieve this is simply by slowing them down. Sometimes, less is more!
2. Maximize your jump intent
What is jump intent? Well, this is the environment we create for a jump. It may seem a bit out there, but we promise when you start to really understand this, you’ll jump higher immediately! As you make each movement of your jump, you’re left with a decision. Do I simply “go through the motions” or do I perform this with aggressive intentions? Well, we know that when our intentions are to be purposeful and deliberate, the results are always better. As you accelerate through your jump approach, think about getting slightly faster with each stride and creating an aggressive, yet relaxed intention behind each movement. Attack the ground with your feet without “muscling” your efforts. This will take time to achieve, but the more plugged in you are to each jump, the more efficient your efforts will become. Remember, be deliberate.
3. Mobilize your hip flexors
It is important to mobilize your hip flexors, if they are not mobilized they will be stiff resulting in a lack of movement and feeling very stuck to the ground. If the hip flexors are loosened and mobilized it will also improve your hip extensors function, this, in turn, increases your vertical jump. Going back to the 360 approach to training, this mobility will help when performing the full range squats we mentioned earlier, which is the primary exercise when looking to increase your vertical jump.
4. Hamstrings and glute exercise is crucial
Working on your hamstrings and glutes is a sure-fire way to increase your vertical jump, these are the main factors that work the hip. Studies have shown movement patterns of jumpers the hamstrings contribute 25% to a movers jump while glutes contribute a whopping 40% to increasing your vertical jump. Therefore, when selecting exercises to train with, be sure there are plenty of movements to stimulate these areas. Some of the exercises we like are trap bar deadlifts, step ups and hip thrusts (just to name a few).
5. Bulgarian split squats build strength
Increasing your vertical jump is primarily achieved by the legs but very few focus on working their legs. If you want to increase your jump then there aren’t many other training techniques that come more highly recommended than the Bulgarian split squat, it improves balance and strength at the same time.
The Bulgarian split squat method:
- Position yourself a few steps away from a sturdy bench, with the non-working leg placed on the top of the bench.
- The top of your foot should be placed on the bench.
- Get a dumbbell in each hand with your chest upright and straight.
- Then lower your body into a squat position until the knee of your back leg is almost touching the ground.
- Use the lead foot to bring yourself back up.
These five simple tips will help you increase your vertical jump if you stick to them at all times and integrate them into your 360 approach to training. If you keep in mind to work on your glutes and hamstrings you will be sure to see results.
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