The Vertical Jump

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Recent Basketball-related Research: The Vertical Jump
Posted on September 27, 2012 by Brian McCormick
On a message forum that I frequent, I continually see trainers touting the Vertimax as the solution to all vertical jump problems for basketball players. There are two issues with this: McClenton et al. (2008) compared depth-jump training to Vertimax training and found: Depth jump training twice weekly for 6 weeks is more beneficial than VertiMax jump training for increasing vertical jump height. Strength professionals should focus on depth jump exercises in the short term over commercially available devices to improve vertical jump performance. McClenton, L.S., Brown, L.E., Coburn, J.W., & Kersey, R.D. (2008). The effect of short-term VertiMax vs. depth jump training on vertical jump performance. Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, 22 (2), 321-325. Carlson et al. (2009) compared strength training, plyometric training, and jump training with a VertiMax and found: The findings of this study demonstrate that there is no difference in vertical jump among strength training, plyometric training, and jump training over a 6-week timeframe. Carlson, K., Magnusen, M. & Walters, P. (2009). Effect of Various Training Modalities on Vertical Jump. Research in Sports Medicine: An International Journal, 17 (2), 84-94. One issue with the second study is the use of plyometrics, as that has become a colloquial term that has lost meaning (Flanagan & Comyns, 2008). Many plyometrics exercises use the slow stretch-shortening cycle (as would VertiMax) with ground contact time longer than 250 milliseconds and large angular displacements  (Schmidtbleicher, 1994), whereas depth jumps utilize a fast stretch-shortening cycle with ground contacts between 100-250 ms and small angular displacements (Schmidtbleicher, 1994). The above results would suggest the need for fast SSC training to improve vertical-jump performance over a six-week training cycle. This does not...
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