How to Improve Your Vertical Leap for Volleyball With Jump Training, Part 1: Strength Training | STACK

How to Improve Your Vertical Leap for Volleyball With Jump Training, Part 1: Strength Training

February 4, 2012

Must See Volleyball Videos

With men's volleyball coming up in the spring, now is the time to improve your jumping ability with vertical jump training. If you work hard in the next month or two, you could add anywhere from two to four inches to your vertical. (I've seen gains up to eight inches!)

To develop your vertical jump for volleyball, you must do two things: strength training and plyometrics. In this article, we will cover how you can strength train to improve your vertical jump.

Your strength training should be a total body workout program, featuring exercises that involve multiple joints. Specifically, you want to perform exercises involving a triple extension of the hips, knees and ankles—strengthening the muscle groups involved in jumping.

One of the best exercises for this is the Hang Clean. It will develop your fast twitch muscle fibers, which will improve your power and explosiveness off the floor. In fact, the movement of a Hang Clean mimics that of a vertical jump, helping to further improve your jumping ability.

The Hang Clean is an Olympic movement, and it must be performed with proper technique, or you could risk injury. Master the movement with a broomstick before you add weight. I advise you to get feedback from a strength coach to perfect your form.

Hang Clean

  • Assume athletic stance holding bar just above knees with back flat, chest out and shoulders directly above bar
  • Explosively extend hips, knees and ankles while simultaneously shrugging with straight arms
  • Pull bar up, keeping it close to body
  • Drop under bar and catch it across shoulders in athletic stance with knees slightly bent
  • Return to start position and repeat for specified reps

The second exercise I recommend is Squats. Volleyball players typically use both feet to jump—a movement that the Squat closely resembles. It specifically strengthens the glutes and quads, two powerful muscle groups that propel you off the floor.

Squats

FROM AROUND THE WEB
  • Assume athletic position with bar on back and feet slightly wider than hip width
  • Keeping chest up, core tight and knees behind toes, lower into squat position until tops of thighs are parallel to ground
  • Drive up out of squat position
  • Repeat for specified reps

After a set of Squats, immediately perform a set of Bodyweight Squat Jumps to maximize your power. This will also develop the endurance you need to last through an entire match. Make sure to rest two to four minutes before your next set of Squats.

Bodyweight Squat Jumps

  • Begin with feet slightly wider than shoulder width and hands behind head
  • Perform squat and explosively jump as high as possible
  • Land softly in squat position and immediately perform again
  • Repeat for specified reps

Starting eight weeks before your season, perform these exercises two to three times per week directly following your dynamic warm-up. Follow the progression below to maximize your vertical jump. In Part 2 of this series, I will focus on how to improve your vertical jump with plyometrics.

Volleyball Workout

Photo:  USA Volleyball/John Kessel

Adam Kessler is a speed coach. He has worked with state championship teams, as well as athletes in different sports, many of whom have competed in the NBA, NFL and overseas. His company, Fitness Planning Consultants, is based in Columbus, Ohio. He is also the founder of howtorunfasternow.com, a website that covers current trends in speed development, plus what professional athletes are doing to make themselves stronger and faster. Visit his site at facebook.com/adamkesslerfanpage.

Adam Kessler
- Adam Kessler is a speed coach who has worked with state championship teams, as well as with athletes in different sports, many of whom have...
Adam Kessler
- Adam Kessler is a speed coach who has worked with state championship teams, as well as with athletes in different sports, many of whom have...
More Cool Stuff You'll Like

Why You're Not Reaching Your Strength and Speed Potential

The other day I had a client of mine ask me for some good glute activation drills.This made me think about common errors when it relates to glute...

Develop Speed With a Power Bag Workout

Do Your First Pull-Up With This Simple Workout. Guaranteed.

The 4 Rules of Bulking Up

Kettlebell Swing vs. Olympic Lifting: Which Is Better?

Build Toughness With This Weight Vest Basketball Workout

4 Strength Exercises for Female Athletes

Hockey Training Designed Specifically for Goalies

Bilateral or Unilateral Exercises: Which Are Better?

Improve Your Durability With 3 BOSU Exercises

Do Your First Deadlift

5 Exercises to Keep Your Shoulders Healthy All Season Long

Should You Train for Absolute or Explosive Strength?

Develop a Bulletproof Core With Advanced Barbell Rollouts

Build Explosive Hips to Jump Higher

Female Athletes: 4 Ways to Test if Your Knees Are Durable

Sumo Deadlift for Football Strength

The Softball Dugout Workout

3 Loading Schemes to Build Muscle Size

3 Simple Tips to Deadlift More Weight

Why Bear Crawls Are All the Rage Right Now

Hanley Ramirez's Overhead Tire Pull

James Harrison's Physioball Side-to-Side Bridge

How to Train During Your Hockey Season

3 Athletic Arm Exercises for Big Guns

Baseball Workout for Power Hitting

Build Rock Solid Glutes With This 30-Day Workout Plan

Man Does 4,300 Pull-Ups in One Day

Breathing Exercises to Strengthen Your Lifts

Get Tougher With Skylar Diggins' Bodyweight Workout

Build Hockey Speed and Power with the Hang Clean

7 Tips to Master Single-Leg Exercises

4 Easy Fixes for Your Bench Press Routine

The 12 Best RDL Variations

Strengthen Your Core With Advanced Plate Push-Outs

Get More Explosive With James Harden's Workout

3 Tips to Maximize Your Off-Season Baseball Training

The Hardest Plank of All Time

Why One Bench Press Is Not Enough

Why the Dead Bug Is Changing Core Training

The Upper-Body Endurance Combo Workout

3D Triceps Workout: 3 Exercises for Huge Arms

How to Get Fit Like a Marine