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Plyometric Exercises for Basketball to Jump Higher and Improve Your Game

27 June 2011 No Comment

Okay, let’s be honest, there’s not a lot of good information out there for plyometric exercises for basketball, or even good stuff about how to jump higher. I’ve looked. And if you want to find something good, you’ll have to really search for it. Especially since the top 3 results for plyometric exercises for basketball are vague and boring and hard to understand, there’s no way that you will actually get anything out of them.

So here you go, everything you need to know about plyometric exercises for basketball.

Before you start

The first thing you should know is that you need to take a few precautions before you start your plyometric exercises for basketball. The first thing is overtraining. Because of how taxing jumping exercises can be on your body to jump so much, make sure to start slowly and build up. An average athlete should start at 200-250 jumps per day of plyometric exercises.

Also, you get the most benefit from plyometric exercises when you jump explosively, so make sure every jump counts. When you start getting sore, you start getting lazy, and when you get lazy, you make mistakes and start to injure yourself. So don’t get lazy. Quality over quantity. If you realize that your jumps are getting worse, don’t push through, take a break and come back to it. Your muscles will grow more from the rest.
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Plyometric Exercises for basketball

Now there are plyo’s for every sport, and a lot are similar. That is because they use similar movements and work similar muscles, but in order to specify your plyometric exercises for basketball, you will need to do similar movements to basketball.

  • Rebounding Drill – this is good for any position, but typically it will go to the post players. Stand on one side of the rim, facing the basket, holding the basketball above your head with both hands. Jump in the air, toss the ball lightly straight off the backboard, and when you land, quickly jump back in the air to catch the ball and toss it back off the backboard without landing on the ground. Bounce it off the backboard 20 times, then finish with a layup. See how many times you can do this in 2 minutes. That will keep you moving quickly.

This is great way to build leg strength as well as coordination, since it may take a while before you really understand the drill and do it correctly.

  • Ladder Drills – These drills will build foot quickness which is so important in basketball. But make sure not to cheat, since it is easy to get lazy in this. Use a plyometric ladder, or use lines on the basketball court which are 12-18 inches apart. You’ll need at least ten of them. Then follow through on the following foot movements.

– Quick Steps: step twice into each box before stepping into the next box.

– High Steps: move quickly, but bring your knees parallel to the floor.

– Double Foot: jump with both feet into every box

– Double Foot 2 for 1: with both feet, jump 2 boxes, then back one, then forward 2, back one, etc.jumping workouts

– Single Foot 2 for 1: step quickly 2 boxes with one foot, followed by the other foot, then back one box with the first foot, followed by the second, etc.

  • Cone Drills – These are great plyometrics for all positions on the basketball team. Set up a line of cones about 2-3 feet apart (don’t go further than this, because this is a drill for height, not distance). Then do the following plyometric exercises:

– Double Footed Hops: hop over each cone and quickly hop over the next one with stopping.

– Single Footed Hops: hop over each cone, but only using your right foot. Switch to your left foot, the next time through the cones.

– Alternating Hops: hop over each cone, switching from right foot to left foot.

Plyometric Exercises for Jumping Higher

Now there are also plyometrics specifically for jumping higher, and these can be used in basketball, as well as other things. So here are the ones that are the most effective.

  • Bounding – These quick movements will build strength in your legs with basically long, quick skips. Here’s a video to explain.

  • Squat Hops – Just like normal squats, only without weight and adding in a jump. So get in squat position, and without any weight, lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the ground, then push yourself up and jump into the air as high as you can. As soon as you land, move directly into squat position again and repeat the move.
  • Jump Rope – Yes, it is a plyometric exercise. And jump rope will help you in more ways than just jumping higher. But with jumping, it will strengthen the tendons in your legs to give your legs their spring back.
  • Lateral Jumps – In order to give you better jumping from any angle, make sure to do plyometrics that will make you jump in more directions than front and back. So this time get a line or obstacle, put it on your left and jump over it, then back. Repeat.

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