Did you see John Wall bashing former NBA All-Star Jerry Stackhouse? What about your dunk between the legs in the City of Palms dunk contest? In case you didn’t know, John Wall, the # 1 NBA Draft Pick of 2010, has a 39-inch vertical (his maximum vertical reach was 11 ‘8.5 “; pre-draft measurements).
Now if you want to improve your vertical, it is important to understand that it is something you need to work on separately. For example, playing as much basketball as you can will not help, quite the opposite! It could even have a negative effect on your vertical jump. The reason is because this way you only train your “jump resistance”.
But to maximize your vertical you need to work on your “jump bang.” The exercises designed to improve your jump explosion are different from conventional ones such as squats and calf raises: you have to do them very fast and with a lot of intensity.
It’s about quality, not quantity and intensity, not quantity of repetition. The key rule here is to do as many reps as you can at maximum speed. Believe it or not: rest is a key element in vertical jump training. Your muscles take a long time to recover. This is why you should never do vertical workouts two days after another. A recovery period (24-48 hours) is extremely important.
There are two other things to watch out for: stretching and nutrition. Make sure to stretch before (briefly) and after each workout. Stretching keeps your muscles flexible so they can exert maximum force.
In addition to rest, your muscles need protein (eg, eggs, chicken breast, turkey, beef, fish, shellfish) and magnesium to grow. However, keep in mind that you should not consume more calories while burning during the day. Otherwise, you will gain weight, which will drastically slow down your progress.
For a specific vertical program, I recommend the Jump Manual, it is simply the best vertical training program available today, with specific exercises, weekly charts, videos and more.
PS John Wall first dived at the age of 14 (his indicated height is now 6 ft 4 in (193 cm); weight 195 pounds (88 kg)).