How to Jump Your Highest

Maximizing your vertical leap requires different exercises and drills performed at different times during the year. To jump your highest, create different workouts to build your muscles before you start training them. Doing both types of exercise during the a workout can cause the exercises to interfere with different muscular functions. Create different workouts that focus on different types of power to get the best results for jumping in volleyball, basketball, tennis, soccer or track and field events.

Build leg muscles, then train them to jump higher using different exercises

Warm up before each workout with dynamic, not static, stretching. Holding a stretch can decrease your power and vertical leap for 15 minutes or more while your muscles recover from the stretch. Jog, skip, do butt kicks or jumping jacks or perform quick lunges.

Off-Season Exercises

Perform muscle-building exercises during the off-season, several months or more before your season starts. Perform deadlifts, squats, lunges, calf raises, hamstring curls and leg presses using as much weight as you can lift. Perform three to five repetitions of an exercise slowly and with good form. Perform three sets of one exercise before starting sets of a new exercise. Alternately, perform 8 to 12 reps of each exercises using about 75 percent of the maximum you can lift, or an amount of weight or resistance that would fatigue you to failure within 90 seconds if you keep going.

Pre-Season Exercises

Perform explosive exercises as you get closer to your season, reducing the amount of weight or resistance you use to do your exercises. Using 50 percent or less of your maximum weight, do deadlifts, box squats, sitting squats on a machine and variations of box jumps. Sit on a box to perform box squats, standing straight up to lift the weights. For another explosive exercise, put one foot on a box or bench that’s just below knee height, then jump up using the leg on the box or bench to lift you. Perform three to six reps per set and change the exercise after one set. Raise the height of the box as you increase your jump.

Work out using reactive power exercises, which look more like jumping. Perform these exercises starting at least one month before your season starts. Coordinate two muscle movements in an up-and-down manner to create movements similar to a jump. Skip or take giant steps across the gym, then walk back. Perform three sets. Jump off a stable platform that’s as tall as your best vertical leap, then try to jump as high as you can when you hit the floor. Practice standing jumps and jumps after taking two steps forward. Perform squats using 30 percent of your maximum weight, finishing with a jump. Lower yourself halfway compared to a regular squat, then jump up.

Stretch After You’re Done

Perform static stretches after workouts. Move your muscles slightly beyond their point of comfortable range of motion and hold for 30 seconds. Move the stretch forward gradually during the stretch if you do not feel pain doing so.

Additional Resources

Sports Fitness Advisor: How To Increase Vertical Jump The Best Exercises for Developing Speed & Vertical Jump