If you can jump high enough to dunk, but you’re having a hard time going up with the basketball in one hand, the solution is to start small and work your way up. A smaller ball such as a soft golf ball or tennis ball is a great starting point. From there, move slowly to a mini-basketball. It will provide more of a challenge but still be easy to palm as you go up. Once you can dunk the mini ball, try moving on to a volleyball until finally a regulation basketball.
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.
No, I think there’s a practical aspect to that. It’s hard to grip a basketball. I mean, that’s another physical challenge. I have pretty small hands, and one thing I had to train myself to do, which I couldn’t do at the start of this project, is palm a basketball. So that involved fingertip push-ups, to get the tips of your fingers much stronger. It involves, while hanging out and watching television, trying to palm a basketball for as long as you can. You want to get into a quick, full sprint, and you want to be able to grip the basketball as you go up to jam it. So doing those things can be a challenge. That’s partly what’s behind people doing the alley-oop-type things or throwing it up off the backboard. In some cases, they simply can’t grip the ball on the way to the hoop, so their solution is to throw it in the air, catch it, and try to bring it down.
In basketball, the ability to jump high can be pretty important, especially for layups and dunks. Thus, it’s no surprise that many people who play basketball, either professionally or just for fun, want to be able to jump higher to improve their game. Luckily, by performing certain exercises, losing weight, and perfecting your technique, you can significantly improve your vertical leap and jump higher in basketball.
I followed the Jump Attack program to the letter, and my training in December, January and February looked and felt nothing like what had preceded it. I spent a month doing those nonsensical lunge holds (and squat holds, push-up holds, chin-up holds). I trusted those holds, and the tendon-testing leg workouts that lasted 2 ½ hours and left me tasting my own broken down muscle in my mouth. I trusted all of it because I was living in that moment, as Carter put it, when the hammering of Carter’s “muscle memory” into my body finally would bear fruit and I’d pitch the ball downward into a 10-foot hoop like a cafeteria customer dunking a roll in coffee.
Dunking became a game again. After my closest misses I’d hop around and swear like a golfer whose playoff putt had lipped out. These outbursts were no longer harsh self-admonitions but celebrations of my progress, acknowledgements that I was getting tantalizingly close. I could feel my legs gaining in bounciness. I could feel my hips, quads and calves learning to fire simultaneously. My original lobber returned to the scene and suggested I try dunking in the morning instead of the evening, when the batteries in our old bodies are as low as the ones in our phones. I added this sage advice to the long list of microdetails “that help you steal inches,” as Todd had phrased it months earlier. “A quarter inch here, a half inch there.”
Slow-Motion Squats – Involves standing with your feet shoulder width apart. From this position slowly lower down until you are in a deep squat making sure your heels are ﬂat on the ground. Hold for 2 seconds before slowly rising back to the starting position. The descent and rise should each take 4 seconds to complete. Throughout the entire exercise make sure to keep your head up and your back straight.