Working on Your Game from the Comfort of Your Own Home
For a lot of basketball players, the pandemic hit particularly hard in areas where fitness centres, parks, and gyms were closed down. Depending on where you are in the world, you may be facing a lockdown or tight restrictions that keep you away from the court and gym.
Luckily, despite closures, restrictions, and lockdowns, there are ways you can continue to work on your game. Here are some tips and exercises that can help you increase your vertical leap from home. Remember to use your own discretion and caution when carrying out these exercises and tips. We don’t want to hear of someone getting seriously injured!
Measure your Vertical Leap
The first step to increasing your vertical is to record what your maximum vertical currently is. You can do so in a variety of ways. An easy way to track your progress is to use a pencil to mark your jump height on the wall. That way, you can also write down the date you reached a specific height.
Increasing your vertical is largely predicated on your leg strength, so doing exercises that strengthen those muscles is the right way to go.
Basketballforcoaches.com has an informative article with various exercises and a training program you can follow. Here are some of the exercises they recommend.
Squatting is an effective exercise that trains both your thigh muscles and calf muscles.
Lunges are similar to squats, and you can take them to the next level by trying lunge-jumps, which take the stance of a lunge and requires you to jump and alternate the positions of your legs in-mid air. I’d recommended to take this exercise slow if you’ve never tried it before.
Toe raises are a great exercise to perform, as the weight you are pushing would be your own body weight. Stand on your toes, and slowly bring yourself back down. Control is key to getting the most out of this exercise. Toe raises can be done even on stairs, making them an effective exercise to do at home.
Don’t Forget to Stretch!
Stretching is by far the most important part of working out. It’s crucial that before any intensive workout, you stretch the muscles you plan on training.
Leg stretches can easily be done from home. Lifting your leg behind your back, and holding onto it with your corresponding arm is a great start. Complete that stretch for 20 seconds with each leg. If you have trouble balancing your body, try touching your belly button with your other hand. It’s surprisingly effective.
It’s common practice to stretch for at least 20-30 minutes prior to starting your strength workouts, so be sure to do so in order to avoid a potential injury.