Having the ability to jump higher is the main goal of basketball and volleyball players. Both of these sports do require high jumping ability, especially to perform slam dunk (basketball), smash, and blocking (volleyball). Moreover, a striker and defender in football are also required to have a high jump in order to win air duel.
There are many exercises you can do to strengthen your leg muscles so you have the power to propel yourself up. However, there is much more you need to know to increase your jump. You have to take care of your shock-absorbing joints, and because your entire body is a kinetic chain, it pays to strengthen muscle groups other than your legs.
Anatomy of Your Leg Muscles
No, your glute muscles are not officially part of your legs, but here we take a below-the-cheeks look at the major players that are.
These muscles, which form the back of the thigh, flex your knee and extend your hip.
Also known as inner thigh muscles; squeeze a pencil between your knees to feel these fire.
This muscle at the front of your thigh is made up of four sections and is the main mover when you extend knees.
The uppermost of your two calf muscles, it gives your feet push-off power with each step.
This calf muscle works with and lies underneath the gastrocnemius.
The strip of muscle that makes up your shin and helps you flex your ankle to move your foot toward your knee.
Using the right techniques along with a proven training system is your only sure way to learn how to jump higher. These muscle exercises to jump higher use explosive force to train and build your leg muscles.
Target your jumping muscles, such as your quadriceps, hamstrings and the gastrocnemius and soleus in your calf, during your normal leg workout. Perform lunges, squats, calf raises to build strength in these muscle groups.
Add weights to increase the intensity of your leg workout and build additional strength. Use a barbell when you squat and perform calf raises and dumbbells when you lunge, for example. When performing a farmer’s walk with weight plates or dumbbells held by your sides, walk on your toes instead of on flat feet to build your calves.
Incorporate plyometric training, which builds strength while conditioning your leg muscles to work together as you jump. Plyometrics employs fast, powerful moves to build jumping strength. Perform jump squats, where you raise your arms and jump as you lift out of each squat, for example, or do tuck jumps, in which you jump quickly eight to 10 times in a row while trying to bring your knees up to your chest. Another option is lateral leg hops jumping from side to side using only one leg.
Add water resistance. Doing basic jumps in a pool can help build your jump height, or try exercises such as bounding, in which you jump forward on one leg at a time almost like an exaggerated run. Try other plyometric moves such as the squat jump, making sure the water isn’t so deep that it goes over your head as you sink into the move. Pool plyometrics can result is less soreness and joint pain than plyometrics on land, according to Ohio State University.
Things You’ll Need