How to Increase Your Vertical Jump for Basketball

In the game of basketball, how high you jump can literally change how you play the game. Having a strong vertical leaping ability will allow you more flexibility in creating your own shot and more latitude on the defensive end of the floor. Being able to leap out of the gym is also one of the more exciting aspects of increasing your vertical jump. Fortunately, you need very little in the way of supplies to work on this important part of your game.

The first thing that you need to realize is that a vertical leap with no basketball skills is useless on the basketball floor. Even if you can jump out of the gym, it is not going to do you any good if you do not have the basics of the game down pat. Certainly spend time working on your vertical leap, but make sure that you spend the majority of time on the basics of the game.

One of the best exercises for building your vertical leap is backboard touches. Simply stand underneath the basketball goal and jump off of both feet to touch the backboard with two hands. Do this over and over again in a pogo-like fashion to get the maximum results. Start with 20 touches per set and try to do five sets per day. Over time, you can increase the number of touches per set.

Another key to increasing your vertical leap is to practice with basketball in hand. Layup drills are fantastic for this and can keep your skills sharp in the process. Every time you do a layup, work on jumping as high as possible. These repetitive motions will help your muscles to get accustomed to the various motions used in basketball.

A really fun way to increase your vertical leap and learn to dunk a basketball is to practice on a lower goal. Adjustable basketball goals are available at any department store and setting them up at about 9 feet is a great way to learn how to dunk. Over time, you will learn how to control your body and increase your jumping ability. I started on an 8-foot goal when I was in sixth grade and worked my way up to a 10 foot goal by my freshman year in high school.

Increasing your vertical leap can be done through weight training as well, but it does not seem to be as effective as some of the other suggestions above. Your best bet is to do a combination of all of the above in conjunction with weight training to attain the best results. Increasing your vertical jumping ability is not nearly as hard as one might believe. It is a matter of dedication more than anything else.

Learning to jump out of the gym is something that most anyone can do if they put in the time and practice. That is the beauty of the human body; if you spend time training it correctly, it will respond in kind.


Rodney Southern is a longtime online writer that runs several online venues including and His first novel is right around the corner, but his first love is still online copy.