Increasing the height of your jump is a great way to measure your physical abilities. This is particularly true for athletes and individuals looking to improve their fitness. Learning how to jump higher will help you in sports such as basketball, volleyball, and even things like soccer and football too! How high you can jump comes down to your strength, balance, and agility.
First and foremost, you must warm-up before doing any jump-related exercise. If you don’t, not only will the height of your jump become restricted, but you also put yourself at risk of injury. Jumping uses some big muscle groups, and if you pull one of those larger muscles it can take a long time to recover.
Take your time to do a mixture of both static and dynamic stretches before getting into the jumps. Walking lunges are a great exercise to get your body warmed up too, just make sure that you are not putting your hands on your knees to support yourself, as this will take away from the exercise.
It is important to note that, naturally, how high you can jump will depend on your age, sex, and the sports that you practice. If you want to know what you should be averaging for your vertical jump height, visit https://www.supporthesport.com/average-vertical-jump/ for more detailed information. Knowing what height you are likely to be averaging will help you know what height is reasonable to strive for.
2) Use a Jump Rope
There are vast benefits to using a jump rope, and one of them is that it helps with your jumping. Your muscles and tendons work in a way that forces your body to make explosive movements, and this is what you will need to get that extra height on a jump. The best thing about jumping rope is that you don’t have to do it for a long period of time to feel the benefit! If you jump for 3 minutes, rest for 2, and then jump for another 3 minutes, that will be enough to help improve your jumping abilities. Not only that but using a skipping rope is a great way to improve your stamina and cardiovascular health. It is a very inexpensive tool to help you do both cardio and strength training and is well worth the investment.
3) Squat Jumps
Squat jumps are a great way to practice explosive movements and to build power in your legs. You bend your knees, use your chest and torso as you lean forward, and then explosively jump into the air. Your legs should straighten when you hit the height of your jump, and as you land make sure to bend your knees to absorb impact.
To get the most out of this exercise you should do between 2-4 sets and 6-12 reps within each set. Squat jumps will target your quadriceps, hamstrings, calves, glutes, and core. All of these are activated when jumping, so the stronger these muscle groups are, the higher your jump will be.
4) Tuck Jumps
A tuck jump is an adaptation exercise that comes from the squat jump. In this movement when you jump up, you bring the knees to the chest as if you are tucking them in against your body. This exercise improves hip flexor flexibility and activates motor mechanics in your body used for jumping as well as general sports too. The muscles used for this activity are the quadriceps, glutes, and hamstrings. It is a common exercise for professional weightlifters and powerlifters to use to help create more power and strength in their lower bodies. Similar to squat jumps, aim to do between 2-4 sets and 6-12 reps within each set.
5) Work on Your Flexibility
Flexibility is a vital ingredient for a successful athlete. Often, we can fall into the trap of focusing exclusively on strength training and then only stretching here and there for about five minutes or so. That amount of stretching is not going to help you! Take the time to stretch properly and don’t rush through them as each stretch needs time to work.
If you are stuck for inspiration, there are plenty of online stretching classes, yoga classes, and pilates classes that can help point you in the right direction. Lots of these classes are short and sweet, averaging around 15 to 20 minutes, so you can easily squeeze that into your daily routine. Incorporating a daily stretch routine will make a massive difference to your body’s ability to jump up high.
The key thing to remember here is that change does not happen overnight. You have to be patient and give these tips and exercises proper time to allow for the changes that are bound to happen. Also, make sure you give your body time to rest so that the muscles can repair and grow back stronger. Listen to your body and if you are starting to feel aches and pains, don’t ignore them until they turn into a full-blown injury because that is what it will be harder to come back from.