Vertical Jump Training – Breaking Plateaus

So maybe you bought a good jump training program and gained the first 6 to 8 inches in your vertical, but now the progress has stopped? Or maybe, after weeks of hard training, you still haven’t seen that initial gain that everyone says comes pretty fast in the beginning?

In any case, you are stuck on a plateau and your training is not producing any more gains. So what can you do?

Here is a list of possible reasons for the plateau and what you can do about it.

Poor Nutrition – A mistake many athletes make is that they only take whey protein after training. One protein shake a day WILL BOOST results. A minimum should be three shakes a day, in the morning, after training, and before bed. Another mistake is poor diet in general. If you think that all your body needs is in the whey protein shake, you are wrong. Try adding fresh fruits and vegetables to your diet. Don’t you like to eat them? Put them in a blender and make it one of your protein shakes of the day. Olympic legend Carl Lewis had the best moments of his career after the age of 30 by switching to a diet of raw fruits and vegetables.

* No glutes, no results, so his squat has increased a lot, but his vertical has not. Your glutes may turn off and you are overcompensating with your quadriceps (thigh muscles). To activate the Buttocks you have to FEEL THAT THEY ARE HIRED. Try Box Squats. As you lower the weight and sit on the box, all the tension is taken off your quads. Now when you get up and start lifting, dig your heels into the floor and FEEL your glutes contract. Another great version of the rear chain is the Wide Stance Squat. With a wide stance, toes pointing slightly outward (like martial arts horse stance), your posterior chain will be forced to take over.

* Plyometric form: you are stronger but you still do not explode. Video yourself jumping. Pay attention to how quickly it leaves the ground. I did this and compared him to a friend of mine and my explosive takeoff was in slow motion compared to his. Naturally, his vertical is much taller than mine, but I am stronger. Focus on maximum takeoff speed with each plyometric exercise.

* Test your vertical after resting: by rest I don’t mean 30 minutes. When you train hard over time, the CNS (central nervous system) will wear out. The CNS is responsible for activating the muscles. Rest for 3-5 days and then test your vertical.

* Your posterior chain is still weak: The main drivers of the jumping movement is the posterior chain (glutes, hamstrings, lower back). Advertising exercises that focus on these areas for greater leverage and explosive potential. There are examples of each exercise all over YouTube, so I will not post examples in this article.

* Glute Ham Lifting.

* Hyper and Reverse Hyper extensions.

* Barbell hip thrusts.

* Squat wide stance.

* Box Squat.

If you think you’ve reached your vertical jump potential, think again. I’ll end with a quote I live by and it sums up this article perfectly.

“There are no limits. Only plateaus. You must not stay there. You must go further.” – Bruce Lee

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