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Exercises To Help You Jump Like Mike

Aug 7, 2008
It was a sad day when Michael Jordan first retired from basketball. (Not so sad when he retired from baseball or the second time from basketball.) He was fun to watch and a real crowd pleaser because of his lightning speed and accuracy. Although, the main reason he was so fun to watch was for his vertical leap, hence the name "Air Jordan." If you ever hear his name the first image that probably pops into your mind is him jumping from way far out, with the legs spread, arms extended, going in for the monster dunk. Do you think you have what it takes to jump like Mike. Many think that it was all in the genetics, and therefore you wouldn't be able to do it. However, you should know that it wasn't all genetics that got him in the air.

We all know that the vertical jump is important for basketball, but what about other sports? Sports like volleyball that involve jumping will require you to have a good vertical. However, you will benefit from any sport you play as an athlete if you work to increase your vertical. If your vertical leap right now is really struggling, just think of how much room for improvement you have. With the right exercise and some basic exercises you will see marked improvements. Obviously it isn't going to happen all at once, but as long as you stay motivated and dedicated to doing your routine workout, you will be jumping higher in much less time than you think. The following are som basic exercises you can do to increase your jumping ability.

Vertical Jumps: What? Vertical jumps? Well obviously if you want to increase your vertical jump, you're going to have to jump, vertically. That one is a no brainer.

Jump Roping: Now you don't have to get into groups of three and sing fairy tale songs or whatever while two of your friends are swinging the rope. I mean, if you want to do it like that, that's fine, but don't let anyone see. In all seriousness, jump roping is huge for increasing your vertical. It will strengthen and tone your muscles better than any workout out there.

Squats: It is recommended that if you are just starting out that you begin without weights, and over time build up and gradually add more weight. Just make sure you repeat the exercise often, that is the key to strengthening leg muscles by doing squats. By doing squats, your legs get use to the motion that you have when you jump.

Calf Raises: The calf muscle is important to improving your jump. If you have access to a gym, there are some machines that will work just your calves. If not, you can build muscle by standing on the edge of a stair and lifting your legs using just your feet.

As long as you stay motivated and consistently work out you will definitely be able to see and feel a difference in your vertical, even if you are just doing these basic and simple exercises.
About the Author
Bart Icles is a writer and avid basketball fan. To learn more exercises to jump higher, or how to increase your vertical, visit the How to Jump Higher blog.
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