Dunking isn't for everybody, but many men at least have a chance at pulling it off. Even so, it depends on a lot of variables for those on the fringe. Many guys have excess weight that keep them grounded. Some days your legs just aren't up to it. Other days, you don't have the right shoes on, or a certain basketball is hard to grip, or a past injury is hampering you. Little things like that can keep you from basketball glory when you're oh-so-close to throwing down.
An impressive vertical jump is the ultimate standard of lower-body power and explosiveness—an attribute that pays as many dividends in high-impact sports like basketball, football, and soccer as it gets you wide-eyed looks in the gym. Increase your hops, and chances are you’ll also be able to run faster, lift more weight, and maybe even throw down a dunk at your next pickup basketball game.
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Scaling the back squat for beginner-level athletes generally entails sticking to lighter loads (even bodyweight only to start) while learning proper technique. Goblet squats with a kettlebell or dumbbell can be used to practice form, but keep in mind that goblets are an anterior (front-loaded) variation and won’t directly mimic the mechanics of the back squat.
Other obstruction-dunks are worth noting: Haneef Munir performed a Dubble-Up, dunking with his right-hand and then caught and dunked a second ball with his left hand—a yet to be duplicated dunk pioneered by Jordan Kilganon on a lower, non-regulation rim. Jordan Kilganon, a Canadian athlete, approached from the baseline a person standing, holding the ball above their head. Kilganon leaped, controlled the ball in front of his torso and raised it above the horizontal plane of the rim before bringing the ball downward into the hoop and hooking both elbows on and hanging from the rim.

This phase begins with the athlete at the bottom of the jump, just as he begins exploding upwards towards the takeoff. The force-time graph shows that the athlete reaches peak forces shortly after reaching the lowest point of the jump. He then further accelerates until his feet leave the ground and there are no more ground reaction forces measurable.


After warming up, I proceeded to slam Jeff’s best lobs off the back rim at least 10 times, watching these missed dunks rebound high over the lane and land somewhere near the three-point line. It’s tough to express how difficult it was to pack up and walk away from the court on such days, to listen to my body when it told me it had reached the point of diminishing returns. To come up with yet another way to tell the wife: No, not today, Sugar. But I came reeeally close.

Sets/Reps: For general strength and lower-body development, Benguche recommends 3–6 sets of 3–8 reps with moderate loading—70%–85% of your one-rep max (1RM). For developing more speed and power, he recommends lighter loads (55%–70% of 1RM) for 3–6 sets of 2–5 reps. Squats performed with light weights but done so explosively that your feet leave the floor when you come up are called jump squats (see “Progressions” below).
Whether the result of a 180° spin or body angle at takeoff, the double clutch is generally performed with the player's back toward the rim. While this orientation is rather conducive to the double clutch motion, Spud Webb was known to perform the dunk while facing the basket. Additionally, Kenny "Sky" Walker, Tracy McGrady—in the 1989 and 2000 NBA Contests, respectively—and others, have performed 360° variation of the double clutch (McGrady completed a lob self-pass before the dunk). Circa 2007, independent slam dunker T-Dub performed the double clutch with a 540° spin which he concluded by hanging on the rim.[9]
Exactly which muscles are most important for improving the vertical jump is still relatively unclear, and may differ between individuals. Clearly, the spinal erectors, hip extensors, quadriceps, and calf muscles are all involved in the jumping movement, and the hip extensors and quadriceps are likely the prime movers, but which of the hip extensors is the primary muscle is very unclear. Importantly, since force production is required right up until take-off, the lower body muscles must produce force from moderate through to short muscle lengths, which differs from the barbell back squat exercise.

Perform jump and reach exercises for a simple vertical jump workout. Start in a standing position with your arms above your head, your feet shoulder-width apart, and your knees and hips forward. Bring your arms down and back, while simultaneously lowering your hips and bending your knees. Then, swing your arms forward and jump as high as you can.[5]


Scaling the back squat for beginner-level athletes generally entails sticking to lighter loads (even bodyweight only to start) while learning proper technique. Goblet squats with a kettlebell or dumbbell can be used to practice form, but keep in mind that goblets are an anterior (front-loaded) variation and won’t directly mimic the mechanics of the back squat.
Among the hundreds of lessons I learned during my youngest child’s first year of life was this: If you earnestly pursue dunking after your athletic peak years of 18 to 30, give or take, it can be done. You can enjoy what it feels like to dunk. You can even feel it more purely than I did, maybe without needing a lob from a friend, and hopefully without all the hand damage. But you should expect a long, frustrating, demeaning war of attrition that pits mind, body, spirit against the most oppressive, unrelenting opponent of them all: gravity. The sun rises and sets, the tides creep in and out—even taxes and death seem negotiable nowadays—but gravity remains constant, forever pounding our shoulders, stooping us shorter as we grow gray, never letting up—no matter what NASA tweets.
John Willman del Financial Times lo describe como "una obra profundamente errónea donde se mezclan fenómenos juntos y dispares para crear algo seductor, pero que en última instancia, posee un argumento deshonesto."14​ Tom Redburn de New York Times dice que "lo que ella más oculta, es el papel necesario del capitalismo emprendedor en la superación de la tendencia inherente de cualquier sistema social establecido a caducar en el estancamiento".15​
Generally, a player can reach their highest when jumping off one foot and reaching up with one hand. For a player that is right-handed, the most common way is approaching from the left and jumping off the left foot with the ball in the right hand. Obviously, for a left-handed player, it’s coming from the right and jumping off the right with the ball in your left hand.
I mean, I think you can probably improve your vertical some in a month. I think, though, that for most normal people who aren’t teenagers who are trying out for their basketball team, who don’t have all that time on their hands, I think there’s a much saner way to go about it, where you’re steadily improving your vertical over a period of time. You know, there’s a lot of this kind of slightly crazy, kamikaze, self-improvement type of thing, whether it’s trying to jump higher or do anything else. I’m sure those things work to some extent, but it’s not the way I would have wanted to go about it.
On the basis of the results of the SOAP study,3 which showed a rate of death of 43% among patients receiving dopamine and a rate of 36% among patients receiving norepinephrine, we estimated that with 765 patients in each group, the study would have 80% power to show a 15% relative difference in the rate of death at 28 days, at a two-sided alpha level of 0.05.
Aside from squats, the exercises below are considered some of the best bodyweight plyometrics you can do to help improve the fast-twitch muscle fibers that enable you to jump higher and run faster. When it comes to vertical jump, plyometrics are a key. A review in the "British Journal of Sports Medicine" looked at 26 research studies that tested the effects of plyometrics on vertical jumps and found that plyometrics increased vertical jump by 8 percent. Another study reported that plyometrics helped professional athletes increase their vertical leap by 23 percent, improve their agility by 8 percent, their balance by 5 percent, and their time by 0.30 seconds on the 20-meter sprint.
Seventy-nine years later, the feat that Daley unwittingly named “the dunk” still flabbergasts. But how it felt to Fortenberry, a pioneering barnstormer whose name we’ve forgotten despite the gold medal he and his teammates won in 1936, remains a mystery. “He never talked about being the first person to dunk and all that,” says 65-year-old Oliver Fortenberry, the only son of Big Joe, who died in ’93. Indeed, the famous dunkers throughout history have been either reticent on the subject or unable to adequately express how it felt to show Dr. Naismith that he’d nailed his peach baskets too low. After more than a year of rigorous research on the subject, I’ve concluded that the inadequacies of modern language—not the ineloquence of the dunk’s practitioners—are at fault. In the eight decades since Fortenberry rocked the rim, words have repeatedly fallen short in describing the only method of scoring, in any sport, that both ignores one of its game’s earliest tenets and, in its very execution, carries a defiant anger.
A more accurate method would be to use a Jump Tester (like these here.) The problem with these, obviously, is that they are way too expensive. In fact, the only scenario in which I recommend using one of these is if you’re a coach, trainer, or athletic director who is purchasing it to test a large number of athletes over time and who needs as accurate of a number as possible for scouting purposes.
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I met Janik at Velocity Sports Performance in Manhattan, where he trains clients. Janik was so handsome and well built he looked like an X-Men character. We talked about my athletic background and what I needed to do in order to dunk in ten weeks. He assigned me a three-days-a-week program that would improve my explosiveness and overall leg strength and told me to check back in three weeks to adjust it. "If you follow the program and your intensity level is high," he said, "I guarantee you’ll dunk again."
Bodyweight squats are a great way to practice your vertical jump because your squat stance mimics the lowest crouch position of your vertical jump. Incorporate these into your routine twice every week, increasing the number or sets and reps as you improve. After you become comfortable with regular squats, consider adding jump squats to your routine.

Try calf raises for an easy way to exercise your calves. In a standing position, push on the balls of your feet while raising your heels so that you’re standing on your toes. Hold this position for 1-3 seconds, then slowly lower yourself back down to starting position. Do 10 reps, or as many as you can, and do as many sets as needed to complete 30 reps overall.[4]


Also, using the lifting (concentric) phase of these exercises only, rather than both lowering and lifting phases, *might* further improve results. This is partly because lifting phases involve faster rate coding, and partly because this strategy might potentially help avoid optimizing stretch-shortening cycle function for lifting heavy weights, rather than for jumping.
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Increase your vertical leap. You will need the lifting power of your legs to get you in the air and up to the basket. Building a regimen of leg workouts that will increase the fast-twitch strength and the flexibility of your leg muscles can help you add inches to your vertical leap, getting you that much closer to the rim.[2] A good regimen to get started with might include:
How do you know these will work? A little over a year ago, I was a 6′7″ HS junior, and I could almost touch rim. I decided that I wanted to dunk as soon as possible. I worked by butt off, doing these numbers or more every day (well, almost). 3 to 4 months later, I threw down my first dunk on a regulation goal (10 feet). Fast forward to today, I am a 6′8″ HS senior, and can dunk regularly (am close to doing a two handed standing dunk).
Muscular strength and explosiveness must be developed in conjunction with flexibility if the athlete is to maximize the jumping ability and reduce the risk of injury to structures such as the Achilles tendon and knee ligaments. Flexibility, when achieved through focused stretching programs, will serve to increase the range of motion in the joints essential to jumping: the ankles, knees, and hips. A common muscular deficiency that plagues athletes who require well-developed leaping ability is a lack of flexibility and resultant strength imbalance between the quadriceps (thigh) muscles and the hamstrings, the pair of muscles responsible for the flexion and the extension of the knee. Proper stretching will assist the athlete in the maintenance of an approximate 3:2 ratio in the relative strength of the quadriceps to the hamstring. When there is a significant deviation from that proportion, the knee and the muscles themselves are at greater risk of injury.
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