Increase Your Vertical With These 5 Exercises

Increase Your Vertical With These 5 Exercises

Increase your Vertical with these 5 exercises

Let’s face it, every athlete in the entire world wants to jump higher and rightfully so!  Jumping leads to many advantages in sports whether you are a volleyball player and need to go up for a block or you are a baseball player robbing someone of a home run. Often times just another inch or two can be the difference between a Division 1 offer and a Division 2 offer. So, what are the best ways to increase your vertical so that you can start getting those Division 1 offers right away? There is no magic pill, but the following 5 exercises are essential to any athlete trying to jump higher!


1. Snap Down (Force Absorption)

The snap down is one of the most basic exercises that requires no equipment and could be a major benefit in your training routine. In order to produce more force your body must be able to absorb that force in a safe manner. This is where Snap Downs come into play. They teach athletes how to absorb the force from their body landing as well as proper landing technique. This ensures the athlete is prepared to jump in a safe and effective manner. Snap downs are a great addition to warm up routines fit perfect before speed work and strength training.



2. Box Jumps (Creating Force)

So we have learned proper landing technique and prepared the body to absorb force, next is producing force into the ground. The box jump allows athlete to produce as much force as they can to ensure that they make it up on the box but allows for a safer landing that saves the athletes from the effects of gravity. Box jumps are generally the safest place to start plyometric training for sport. It is not necessary to increase the height drastically for box jumps. This increases the risk of a fall or injury but does not necessarily increase the force that the athlete puts into the ground. By placing the box at a manageable but challenging height athletes get every benefit of the box jump with minimal risk. 


3. Depth Jumps (Impulse)

The Russians got it right with this exercise. This movement requires elements of both of the previous movements. The depth jump refers to jumping down from and elevated surface, absorbing the force, and turning that force into a vertical jump. The jump after the landing must be MAXIMAL to maximize the benefits from this exercise. Dropping from the box overloads the body which absorbs the force and transfers it into a vertical leap. One of the biggest concerns during depth jumps is the height of the surface you fall from. Always start on a shorter box and slowly progress to higher boxes over time making sure that you can maintain proper technique.


4. Bulgarian Split Squats (Imbalance and Stability)

Unilateral movements are one of the best ways in increase overall strength and prevent muscle imbalances in the body. Split squats are a great example of a unilateral lower body exercise that incorporates the quads, hamstrings, and glutes. These muscles are all major movers in jumping therefore it is important to strengthen them and eliminate imbalances. By working on strength unilaterally, athletes also have to maintain balance and subsequently work and stability while performing the exercise. You can progress Bulgarian split squats by adding weight with either a dumbbell, kettlebell, or even a barbell.


5. Deadlifts (Strength)

Deadlifts are simply the best bilateral movement when it comes to building strength. Every athlete, no matter the sport, can benefit from increases in strength and stability in the lower body. Deadlifts strengthen the glutes and hamstrings as well as develop a strong back, core and grip. That makes them one of the best bang for your buck exercises out there. Like all of the exercises on this list, form is key when performing deadlifts. Athletes must maintain a neutral spine while pushing through the floor with their feet in order to perform this exercise safe manner.



Adding the 5 exercises above to any strength training routine will not only increase your vertical but it will prepare your body for the demands of competition in your sport. Sure, there are more complicated and advanced exercises out there but these 5 should be the staple of any jumping program. Each program at Spark Fitness and Performance is sport specific and built to make you a better athletes. Contact us today to get started on your program with a free consultation!





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