So you want to increase your vertical jump? One of the best ways to do this is with plyometric training. Plyometrics train the nervous system to reach maximum force in the shortest amount of time. In this sense, plyometrics training bridges the gap between speed and strength and it is incredibly important for mastering the vertical jump. In Vert Shock, you can find a lot of plyometric exercises and I know they really helped me take my vertical jump to the next level. So, I thought I’d share some tips on how to make the most of plyometric training to increase your vertical jump.
Are You Ready for Plyometrics?
Don’t even think about starting plyometric training until you’ve got some strength and resistance training. The general rule to go by is that you should be able to squat 150% of your body weight before you begin plyos. So, if you weigh 160 pounds, then you should be able to squat 240lbs.
Focus on Getting the Movements Right First
Don’t throw yourself full force into the plyometric exercises right away. First, take some time to make sure you’ve got the movements right. I recommend setting up a video camera and doing some practice runs (Again, not at full force. The goal here is to master the movements). Watch the videos. Once you are sure you’ve got the movements down, you can start putting your all into it.
Learn How to Land
Plyometric exercises involve a lot of impact. The impact can be terrible for your knees and joints, which is why it is so important to learn how to land properly. You should aim to land on the mid part of your foot. Your knees, toes, and hips should be in alignment. Just like you should practice the movements of plyo exercises, practice the landing before you go at it with full intensity!
Do Static Stretches AFTER, Not Before
There are two types of stretching: dynamic (where you move around to warm up your muscles) and static (where you stay still while stretching your muscles). You must ALWAYS do dynamic stretches before working out – or else you risk serious injury. As far as static stretches go, do them after training and not before. Evidence shows that static stretches can reduce your power input during plyo training. Don’t skip the static stretches though! I know you feel like a dweeb out there on the court doing stretches, but it really helps your performance. Stretching opens up your hips and leg muscles, which means you can run faster and jump higher. It also protects you from injury.
Don’t Do the Same Plyos Every Time
Plyometrics are helpful, but they aren’t going to work their wonders on your vertical jump if you do the same exercises every single time. Mix up your routine, and mix up the intensity. This is where it really helps to have a training program like Vert Shock, because it lays out exactly which exercises to do each day. Because they require so much recovery time, you should only really be doing plyometric exercises about 1-3 times per week.
If you want a plyometric training program for improving vertical jump, I recommend checking out Vert Shock. That is the program I used and it has a lot of great tips on how to master your jump. You can check out Vert Shock here.