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Quiz the Coach :: Secret to Soar

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Hey Coach,


How do people jump high while playing basketball?


shaq


Dear shaq,


Jumping high is an explosive action that takes a lot of power. You can actually train your muscles to jump high like anything. But if you’re wondering why some people can naturally jump higher than other people, it has a lot to do with the DNA of your muscles, tendons and body type.


Born to Bounce

The biggest reasons why some people are natural jumpers happen right in the tummy of their mummy before they are born. Here are some of those major reasons why you might be born to bounce:


  • Muscles - your body has two types of muscles (Fast Twitch and Slow Twitch). You might be born with more of one than the other which could make you a higher jumper or on the other hand... a long distance runner.
  • Tendons - If you are born with bigger, stronger tendons, they could make you jump higher. They are like elastics that can shoot you up into the air.
  • Bone Structure - Our bodies are all different shapes and sizes and it’s very possible that your legs are shaped in a way that just makes jumping easy because of the angles of your bones and posture.

Fast Twitch Muscle Fibers

Fast twitch muscles are the muscles that will make you jump higher! They can grow very big like a body builder’s muscles. But jumping also take lots of technique so don't count on just the size of your leg muscles to make you jump high. Also, if they grow too big, these muscles can get very heavy and you might not be able to lift yourself off the ground!


Dreaming to Dunk

If you’re a basketball player, of course it’s your dream to be able to dunk a basketball. But if you’re not 6 foot 6 inches tall like Michael Jordan, it’s not going to be so easy. You've got to train with programs like plyometrics. Here are some example exercises:


  • Stretching - Flexibility is crucial to jumping high
  • Warm-Up Running up and down stairs or skipping rope
  • Deep Knee Bends - Squat down with your back straight slowly
  • Toe Raises - Standing still, push yourself up with your toes
  • Stomach Crunches - 10 minutes every morning / every night
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