I learned that insects are fucking awesome. There was an insect in particular that I was interested in called the froghopper, or spittlebug, that is basically one of the world’s top jumpers. It’s a survival mechanism. It can jump far, far higher than we can as a function of its weight, basically. So I learned that humans are quite modest in the jumping scheme of things.
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Even so, the back squat does differ in important ways from the vertical jump. Primarily, it involves a much greater trunk extension turning force, because of the barbell weight on the upper back, and this likely contributes to the more hip-dominant nature of the squat over the vertical jump. Secondly, it is often performed to a deeper depth, which can alter the relative contribution of each of the hip extensors to the movement, because of their different leverages at each joint angle. And thirdly, it only involves accelerating up to midway through the movement, while the vertical jump involves accelerating right up until take-off. This also affects the relative contribution of the hip extensors, as force production will be required in the jump even when the hip is nearly fully extended, while this is unnecessary in the squat.

Overall, 309 patients (18.4%) had an arrhythmia; the most common type of arrhythmia was atrial fibrillation, which occurred in 266 patients (86.1%). More patients had an arrhythmia, especially atrial fibrillation, in the dopamine group than in the norepinephrine group (Table 3). The study drug was discontinued in 65 patients owing to severe arrhythmias — 52 patients (6.1%) in the dopamine group and 13 patients (1.6%) in the norepinephrine group (P<0.001). These patients were included in the intention-to-treat analysis. There were no significant differences between the groups in the incidences of other adverse events.


Randomization was performed in computer-generated, permuted blocks of 6 to 10, stratified according to the participating ICU. Treatment assignments and a five-digit reference number were placed in sealed, opaque envelopes, which were opened by the person responsible for the preparation of the trial-drug solutions. The solutions of norepinephrine or dopamine were prepared in vials or syringes according to the preference of the local ICU. Each vial or syringe was then labeled with its randomly allocated number. The doctors and nurses administering the drugs, as well as the local investigators and research personnel who collected data, were unaware of the treatment assignments. The trial was approved by the ethics committee at each participating center. Written informed consent was obtained from all patients or next of kin.

My quest to dunk started poorly. The main problem was that I could only do about half of the very long list of ercises the Jump Manual instructed at the crowded and inadequate YMCA near my place. The basketball court—the only space big enough to do some of the drills—was always occupied with classes. The Strength Shoes, meanwhile, were so absurd that I was too embarrassed to wear them in front of other gym-goers. I used them only a handful of times, in an empty stairwell on the top floor of the gym.
An important component of maximizing height in a vertical jump is attributed to the use of counter-movements of the legs and arm swings prior to take off, as both of these actions have been shown to significantly increase the body’s center of mass rise. The counter-movement of the legs, a quick bend of the knees which lowers the center of mass prior to springing upwards, has been shown to improve jump height by 12% compared to jumping without the counter-movement. This is attributed to the stretch shortening cycle of the leg muscles enabling the muscles to create more contractile energy. Furthermore, jump height can be increased another 10% by executing arm swings during the take off phase of the jump compared to if no arm swings are utilized. This involves lowering the arms distally and posteriorly during the leg counter-movements, and powerfully thrusting the arms up and over the head as the leg extension phase begins. As the arms complete the swinging movement they pull up on the lower body causing the lower musculature to contract more rapidly, hence aiding in greater jump height.[5] Despite these increases due to technical adjustments, it appears as if optimizing both the force producing and elastic properties of the musculotendinous system in the lower limbs is largely determined by genetics and partially mutable through resistance exercise training.[6][7]
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