Many fanatics wonder if vertical jumping is caused by genetics for sports that require you to jump vertically, like handball, basketball, and high jump. Like all sports and practically anything we do, some people are just more naturally gifted than everyone else. Although you can train to jump higher, some people may always be able to out jump you.
So, is vertical jumping genetics?
When doing a vertical jump, genetics can play a huge role in how high someone can jump. This is primarily from their fiber ratio. If someone has fast-twitch fibers based on their jumping muscles (aka legs), they can jump and train much more effectively than someone with slow-twitch fibers.
As you can see, genetics can play a huge role in how high you can vertically jump. However, although this is true, it doesn’t mean you cannot train to jump higher than your previous records. If you want to understand more about genetics, vertical jumping, and how you can improve your vertical jump, I suggest you read the below:
Something people are curious about is if there’s a genetic limit to vertical jumping. Without a doubt, the human body can’t jump an absurd amount. Although there aren’t any tests based around the genetic limit, many sports professionals suggest it’s around 34 inches high.
This figure is from genetics alone, not training. But, even then, 99% of all basketball players will never achieve a 40 + inch vertical jump. The above is important to remember because I’ve personally seen countless ads about how a 12-week training program can double your vertical jump. These advertisements just aren’t realistic and should only be taken with a grain of salt.
Yes, they can probably enhance your vertical jump, but they’ll never ever make you jump 40+ inches in just twelve weeks. Everybody has a vertical jump limit, but these are just much different than one another. However, what training can do is maximize your jumping limit, which many people never achieve.
Due to this, if you pair genetics and training together, you’ll ultimately be able to reach your maximum vertical jump. Do you want to improve your vertical jump? I suggest you become familiar with the below. Here we detail the four main tips you’ll want to consider when trying to maximize your vertical jump.
When trying to achieve your maximum jump, there are four primary tips that I can provide you. These are improvement exercises, progressive overload, testing, and setting yourself realistic goals. By doing this, you can steadily increase your vertical jump over a period of time. Without wasting any more time, let’s get into this. Here are four tips on jumping higher:
Before we get into the exercises you’ll want to perform to increase your vertical jump, let’s discuss the muscles that actually excel you into the air: your glutes, quads, hamstrings, calves, and, surprisingly, your core. You can start to develop a better understanding of why you would perform the below exercises from knowing this.
The jump squat is first on the list of primary exercises you should undergo to improve your vertical jump. As you can imagine, the jump squat is an extremely powerful exercise for enhancing your vertical jump. This is because it almost mimics the motion you’ll do anyways.
Because we want to improve our vertical jump, you’ll want to train for muscle strength, not endurance. Therefore, you’ll want to minimize the reps (around 6 to 8) and maximize the resistance with either weights or resistance bands.
Additionally to the above, you’ll want to perform Romanian deadlifts. This is a superb strength workout for almost all your leg muscles. Again, similar to the above exercise, you’ll want to train for explosive strength, not endurance. Because of this, you’ll want to decrease your rep range and increase the weight used to perform this exercise. Also, instead of slowly doing a Romanian deadlift, do it with explosive power, as this will train your muscles to provide this type of strength.
Lastly, another superb exercise to increase your vertical jump is the reverse lunge. This increases the strength of your entire legs, and because it’s reversed, your core is also activated, meaning you enhance your core strength. Again, decrease the rep range, increase the weight, and apply explosive power in your movements.
As you can see, there are various exercises you can perform that can increase your vertical jump. However, including the above in your workout routine won’t just increase your vertical jump. You’ll also need to implement the below:
When doing the above exercises, you’ll want to include progressive overload within your training routine. This is where you increase the weight or resistance of an exercise weekly or bi-weekly. By implementing this type of tactic, you continuously increase the demand with your muscles. After a period of time, your muscles will adapt to the resistance or weight, meaning they are more robust.
Therefore, to make them even stronger, you’ll want to keep increasing how much stress your muscles are under.
Including the above, you need to be testing on a weekly or monthly basis. At the end of the day, if you don’t know if your training is improving or decreasing your vertical jump, you’ll never understand if training the way you currently are is effective. To counteract this issue, always test.
There are two different ways in which you can test your vertical jump, and this is either with or without equipment. Not many people have access to the vertical jump test equipment, so let’s talk about how you’re able to test this without uncommon equipment.
What you’ll need to perform this anywhere is an even surface, some double-sided tape, and a measuring device. It’s simple, you’ll want to stick some double-sided tape to the end of your middle finger and jump as high as you can while placing it on the even vertical surface.
Lastly, set realistic goals. Saying you’re going to double your jump within 12-weeks isn’t realistic. Instead say, I want to increase my vertical jump by 4 inches by the end of the year. Then, break this down into months to make it more manageable. For example, each month, I will improve my vertical jump by 0.33 inches. As you can see, it seems a lot easier when you set goals in this type of way.
By implementing the above and being consistent with it, you’ll for sure see improvements in your vertical jump. However, remember it takes time, Rome wasn’t built in a night.
Unsurprisingly there are people around the world who are genetically gifted and have a passion for vertical jumps. The combination of both of these is superb because that’s when you get world records. Below you can find the highest vertical jumps in various scenarios.
After reading the above, you should now understand whether or not vertical jumps are genetically enhanced or not. Although you can improve your vertical jump through exercise and dieting, genetics is the leading cause of jumping height.