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Basketball Skill Training: Increase Your Vertical Jump

The 4 March Madness jumping exercises to get you on the road to dunking a basketball.

The Big Four for a Bigger Vertical

PVC/Broomstick Squat Jump

3-5 sets x 5 reps 1-2 minutes of recovery Stance: 1. Start with the feet hip-width 2. Hips slightly back (hip hinge) and back is arched 3. Knees slightly bent and rotated outward 4. Place the stick behind the lower back with elbows behind and forearms under stick 5. Palms up Take off: 1. The movement will begin from a static athletic position (no counter-movement) 2. Perform the jump by getting triple extension from the ankle, knee, and hip 3. Keep the palms up and stick tight to lower back Landing: 1. Once you land, push the hips back 2. Slightly bend and rotate the knees outward 3. Land with a soft foot 4. Quickly (under control) perform another explosive jump 5. Once all the reps are done, stick the last jump and in the athletic position hold for 2 seconds before resting

Depth Jump

3-5 sets x 3 reps (12-18 inch box or weight bench) 2-3 minutes of recovery Stance: 1. Start nice and tall on top of a plyo-box (12-18 inches) or bench 2. From there, lead with one leg and step off the plyo-box or bench Landing 1: 1. Land with a soft foot (stay on the balls of your feet with heels slightly off the ground) 2. Hips back (hip hinge), knee’s slightly bent and out, and arms back (athletic position) Take off: 1. As fast as you can (under control) jump by getting triple extension from the ankle, knee, and hip 2. At the same time throw your arm upwards (forcefully) Landing 2: 1. Land with a soft flat foot in the athletic position on the floor

Barbell Squat

5-8 sets x 5 reps (progressively work up to a heavy set of 5) 2-5 minutes of recovery Set-up: 1. Create a shelf by pulling shoulder blades together (retracted) 2. Drive the elbows under the bar (think about bending the bar down) 3. Drive the head into the bar and tuck the chin (make a double chin) 4. Arch the lower back and push the hips back 5. Create an outward pressure by rotating the knees out (external rotation) 6. Keep the outward pressure on the lateral heel 7. Three points of contact on the foot, below big toe, below pinky toe, and heel 8. Brace the torso (squeeze abs and lower rib cage) and fill the belly with air Downward Phase: 1. Start the movement by pushing hips back (hip hinge) and knees out (spreading the floor) 2. Keep the elbows under the bar (bending and pulling the bar down) 3. Drive the head back into the bar and keep the chin tucked (neutral head position) Upward Phase: 1. Start the movement with pushing the hips up out of the bottom position 2. Keep the elbows under the bar (bending and pulling the bar down) 3. Continue to push the knees out (spreading the floor) and drive through the heels

Barbell Squat Jump (Reactive)

3-5 sets x 2 reps @ 20% of the last set performed for the squat 2-3 minutes of recovery Stance: 1. Start with the feet hip width 2. Hips slightly back (hip hinge) and back is arched 3. Knee’s slightly bent and rotated outward 4. The barbell will be position like a traditional squat Take off: 1. The movement will begin from a static athletic position (no counter-movement) 2. Perform the jump by getting triple extension from the ankle, knee, and hip 3. Actively pull down on the bar (bend the bar) with the lats and keep the elbows directly under the bar throughout the entire movement Landing: 1. Upon landing push the hips back 2. Slightly bend and rotate the knees outward 3. Land with a soft foot 4. Quickly (under control) perform another explosive jump 5. Once all the reps are completed stick the last jump and in the athletic position hold for 2 seconds before racking the barbell Greg Robins NASM-CPT, RKC & Jamie Smith C.S.C.S. are trainers with Total Performance Sports in Everett, MA.

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