I’m excited to share this with you because I love jumping high. And I want you to be able to jump high with me.
No matter your age, sex, gender, interest, or height, you will be able to increase your vertical jumping ability with the right progressive training.
In this post, there is no B.S. This is the real deal on what you need to do to improve your vertical jumping ability over the next 30-90 days.
What are some things that you need to consider when you want to improve your vertical jumping ability?
- Body weight
- Body’s muscle condition
- Strength, power, and explosiveness
- Endurance and stamina
Which sports will you be able to apply this to?
This will apply to a broad category of sports including:
- Basketball (So you can jump higher to rebound, shoot, and dunk the ball)
- Volleyball (So you can jump higher to spike and block the ball)
- Soccer (So you can beat defenders to head the ball into the goal)
- High Jump (So you can clear the bar and break records)
The way that you will be able to measure your progression precisely each year is by competing in the high jump event in track and field.
Ideally, you will be able to jump higher than the average heights in your age range.
What should be your goal when trying to improve your vertical jump?
You need to set the benchmark. There are two types of take-offs that you will need to measure.
Double leg jump
This is where you will use both feet/legs and you will jump high by squatting and exploding vertically to get the highest height possible.
- Do a wall test by standing by a wall with both arms high and take the mark.
- Jump up and then mark how high you reached when you aimed with both hands.
- Measure the distance between the two.
- This will be your starting benchmark for improving your vertical jump with two feet.
Single leg take-off
Do the benchmark test off both legs. You will usually find that one leg is more dominant than the other.
- Take a run-up of 3 to 5 steps and jump up explosively off one foot.
- Before jumping, take a mark from the standing position next to a wall.
- When you run-in, jump and mark the wall.
- Measure the difference.
- This will be your starting vertical difference.
How much of an increase to your vertical jump should you aim for?
Most people will be able to achieve at least 10 inches, which is 30cm. At the high-end, some people will achieve 30-40 inches, 76-100cm.
Start by setting small goals such as 1-2 inch improvements. You will need to be tactical in your development when developing your vertical jumping ability.
What do you need to do to start improving your vertical jump?
Develop a lean, lightweight, athletic frame.
The lighter you are in your weight, the easier it will be to jump higher. You need to generate enough power and force against the forces of gravity that are pushing you down towards the ground.
For each additional weight that you accrue to your frame, the more explosive power you need to generate.
At the same time, you need to have muscles that will generate enough power for you to propel yourself upwards.
The first thing that you will do is go on the scale.
If you are male, you will want to aim for a target weight of 60-83kg. The lighter you are, the easier it will be for you to jump higher.
You can control this by putting yourself into a calorie deficit diet. If you are male, this will see you consuming around 1800 calories per day in food, which should allow you to lose 500-1000g of body fat each week.
Once you get around 83kg, you should start to feel faster and more mobile. You will be able to move more intensely and you should find it easier to lose the body fat that you are holding.
Aim to get your body fat percentage to at least 12% of your total body fat. The lower you can get your body fat down, the better.
The body fat won’t help contribute to your explosive jumping ability.
Losing weight should help you gain at least 1cm per kilogram lost.
Below is a table that shows how much extra weight you will carry at the different body fat percentages, which will require you to generate a lot more vertical power because you will be able to explode out of the jump with more acceleration and velocity.
|Body fat percentage (Based on 80 kg)||Amount of fat weight in your body|
|Weight loss||Vertical Jumping Height Gained (cm – Estimate)||Vertical Jumping Height Gained (inches – estimate)|
How can you accelerate the fat and weight loss?
You will need to do cardiovascular exercises that will help trigger the calorie deficit. Because we also want to improve your jumping ability and power as quickly as possible, this can be done by doing incline walks for 40-60 minutes, or walking on a stair machine for 40-60 minutes.
You will need to commit to doing this daily.
This will also develop the muscles in your legs and it will prep you for the progressive resistance weights and explosive exercises that you will need to do to improve your vertical jumping ability.
Once you are in the weight range, start measuring your vertical height difference every time you lose 1 kilogram.
The other thing that you need to consider is not losing muscle mass and strength. The key is to preserve your muscle and power, whilst tapering off the body fat steadily. Losing 0.5-1kg per week should allow you to preserve your muscle and power during a calorie deficit.
Developing and conditioning your muscles to maximize your vertical jumping ability.
You need to understand how the body works so you can develop those muscle groups that will allow you to jump higher from your desired position.
Muscles that you need to develop if you want to increase your vertical jump from a double-footed jump.
- Glutes (Torque power)
- Hip flexors
- Quadriceps (Torque power)
- Ankle dorsiflexion
You will need to develop strength, power, and explosiveness in these muscle groups in a way that generates significant torque power that will allow you to generate a significant amount of vertical force that will maximize your vertical jump.
Muscles that you need to develop if you want to increase your vertical jump from a single-footed jump.
- Hip Flexors
- Calf muscles
- Ankle mobility and dorsiflexion
- Lower abdominals
Develop power in your ankle dorsiflexion
Training in sand
Training in soft sand will require your legs to engage the full range of motion in your ankle. This will force your ankle dorsiflexion to improve and become more powerful.
If you have access to soft sand or even sand hills, include these in your workout.
Barefoot training on grass
Doing training in barefeet will allow you to use the fine muscles in your ankle dorsiflexion and your toes, which will allow you to develop more explosive power to run faster and jump higher.
Walk backwards for at least 100m per day to help your body’s mechanics and dynamically stretch your ankle dorsiflexion to full extension.
Backward sled pulls
This will add resistance to the walking movement and will really force you to drive through to full extension.
Backward runs (Backpedalling)
Backwards runs or backpedaling will allow you to explode through the movement with speed and acceleration.
Strength and explosiveness exercises
Full seated squat
You will need to work towards having a full range of motion with the squat, but at least generate enough flexibility to do a seated squat and generate a high amount of strength and power from the seated position.
The pistol squat (also known as the single leg squat) will develop the strength and power in your legs rapidly. Work towards full range so you can maximise the full leg strength. Progressively overload the muscle to see improvements to your performance.
Hopping, bounding, and skipping will form a mix of the exercises that you will need to do to improve your vertical jumping power, muscle elasticity, and explosiveness to jump higher.
Skipping is great for building explosive power in your calves. You need to condition your muscles so that your reaction time is quick off the ground. Aim for double or triple under until failure.
Hurdle jumps are one of the best plyometric exercises that you can do to improve your vertical jump. Focus on straight legged hurdle jumps. Include tuck jumps over the hurdle in your program as well.
Hill runs will help you improve the power and explosiveness through your ankles, quadriceps, calves, and hip flexors, which will help you generate more speed and power that’s needed to jump higher. You will need to focus on staying on and powering through your toes.
This is bounding up a hill on an incline. This will force you to bound with extra ankle dorsiflexion.
This is hopping up a hill on an incline. This will force you to hop with extra ankle dorsiflexion.
Stair runs will force you to explode vertically off each step.
Step-up onto a box and explode by jumping up as high as possible. Alternate each leg and focus on having a quick reaction time off the ground. Repeat this until failure.
Single leg hurdle jumps/skips
Do single-leg hurdle jumps/skips to practice the full extension of your take-off for maximum vertical jumping height.
Straight legged bounds
Do sets of straight legged bounds to improve your explosive speed in your hamstrings.
Reverse lunge explosive jumps
Do reverse lunges to improve your explosive speed in your hamstrings.
Do sets of Nordic curls to improve your explosive speed and power in your hamstrings.
Resistance training – Weights
You will need to develop lean muscle that you can use to develop strength and power, which will allow you to jump higher.
Trap bar explosive jumps
Do trap bar explosive jumps to improve your acceleration with resistance weights from the ground.
Use the hack squat machine to develop your strength and power in your quadriceps.
Smith machine squat
This is a safe way to develop the strength in your squat using a full range of motion.
Explosive deadlifts will help you develop your pushing strength and acceleration through the ground.
Bulgarian split squat
Develop your single-leg strength and power with Bulgarian Split Squats.
The Goblet squat will help you improve your squat position and will naturally stretch all of your muscles required to do a deep squat.
These are great for helping you develop the acceleration force required for your jump.
These only focus on pulling from the ground (No clean).
This requires you to generate a lot of power and muscle acceleration in a short space of time. Awesome for jumping and speed development.
This requires you to pull from an elevated position to strengthen and activate muscles that will help you increase your power.
How much higher should you expect to jump?
Within 4 weeks, you should notice a 3-10cm improvement (1-3 inches) in your vertical leap if you combine the workouts with the weight loss. You can build on this month on month until you can get 20-40 inches in your vertical leap.
I hope that this helps.
If you’re interested in jumping higher, you can purchase my high jump training program that I used to jump over 2m. It’s available for $4.99.
If you would like to learn more about the high jump, you can purchase our high jump drills ebook for $9.99.
We also offer a complete bundle that will help you improve your vertical jump, diet & nutrition, mental cues, and high jump training. Individually, this would cost $59.94, but is available for $30 (Save $29.94)
If you want to improve your body’s jumping condition, you can also purchase the Jump Manual, which can help you jump an additional 10-30 cm. However, it isn’t high jump specific. But your body will have the potential to jump higher. You can click here to purchase the program.
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