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.
Where it (relatively) falters is in the oft gratuitous sexual content, occasionally drawn out beyond all reason. This holds particularly true of Million's trawl through the mind's red light district full of tempting whores like Orientals Kia and Tricia Yen and Caressa Savage, abusing herself at length with a scary looking dildo. At best, the sex is still positively riveting though with sweet Shayla subjugated to a pair of fearsome gargoyles (T.T. Boy and Vince Voyeur in amazing body make-up) and a group of pony girls - remember them ? - at film's climax.
Each time you land, spring immediately back up. Don’t hesitate. The single beat that typically happens after we hit the ground is a natural reflex, and we may not even realize we’re doing it. But that extra pause has to go if we’re looking for a way to jump higher. Check the mirror or watch videos of yourself as you hit the ground. The momentary pause you may see between one vertical jump and the next may be holding you back. For more detail on how this works, visit the plyometrics section of our website.
My early efforts were clumsy. Jumping willy-nilly as high as I could, with no regard for technique, I occasionally felt my finger graze the underside of the rim. Most times I did not. What I did feel early on was a firm self-awareness that I was a two-foot jumper (like Spud Webb, Dominique Wilkins, Vince Carter and myriad NBA Slam Dunk champions with whom I have nothing else in common athletically) as opposed to a one-foot jumper (see: Julius Erving, Clyde Drexler, Michael Jordan). This meant that my best shot at dunking would be to elevate like an outside hitter in volleyball—that is, by stepping forward with one foot, quickly planting my trailing foot next to it and then propelling myself upward off both.
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.
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.
Similar to building explosive power by jumping over a stationary object, hurdles allow you to practice your leap. Space eight flights of hurdles two feet from each other and aim to jump over each like a pogo stick—basically, as high as you can. Repeat this for 10 repetitions: one flight of eight hurdles equals one repetition. Do this twice per week.
Then, in terms of exercises, you really need to get your whole body stronger. You need to improve your core, and obviously you need to improve your legs. So someone who is interested in jumping higher will find themselves doing a lot of squats. And I would suggest that if someone just started this, they could do a lot of squat exercises without even going to the gym or even bearing weight. You know, get up in their office cubicle and do ten squats. Three sets of ten reps of squats is a good workout.
Unfortunately, I’m not the 6' 7" son of a Hall of Famer, so I had to resort to desperate devices—like Hennessy, an infamous and inexpensive cognac that, according to one of the two NBA players who recommended it to me, “will give you that Yah! That bounce. That little bit of meanness you need.” The little minibar-sized bottle that I downed 30 minutes into an intense session of dunk attempts on a sweltering day last summer, had no effect other than scorching my esophagus, giving me a headache and releasing from my pores an aura that, as my six-year-old put it that evening, “smells like medicine.”
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.
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. 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.