T Nation

I Want to Dunk, Routine?

Hello all
I’m new here but I’m looking to get in shape and I know this is the best place for advice.
First, I’m 24 yrs old, 6’0, 178 lb
probably 13% body fat
never weightlifted before…ever
I’m not cut, not fat, but decently lean especially for someone who hasn’t really been lifting.

I dont have a 6 pack, my ass and legs have some jiggle to them. Honestly, from my frame, you would think I work out but I don’t.

Goals:
Goddamn do I want to dunk a basketball!!!
I have been playing with some college kids that go to Marquette. They’re good, I’m good too. Unfortunately, they can dunk and I can’t.
Last night, I got dunked on. First time ever. I need revenge. ASAP(I know this won’t come quickly…if ever).

Right now I can touch the rim but I’ll need another 8" before I can dunk. Is this plausible? I don’t know if I’m blessed with genes to jump high enough to dunk but since I can touch rim without ever working out before, I should have a chance right? I need to try at least. I can’t accept wondering and I think I’m still at an age where I can make it.

Heres why I am confused:
Fat powerlifters can squat 500 and jump 40’’ so I would think massive leg muscles would be the answer. Squat squat squat, right? Then I see these rail thin guys on Slamnation such as Kadour Ziani, Abdoul Bamba and Steve Lobel and they have 50" verts. They make me wonder if I should shed weight?

Since I’m 178, should I shed to 160-165 and hope that a weight loss results in a higher vert or should I do a bulk routine and get my legs as strong as possible which will add more fat and weight all around?

Also, realistically, how long do you think it would take to reach my goal? just wondering…

You should read some of Kelly Baggett’s stuff. He has a ton of articles on how to jump higher and run faster.

You should start off by reading his Vertical Jump FAQ. After that, just scroll down and read anything that he has to say on strength, explosiveness, and jumping.

Good luck!

squats

when it comes to the skinny guys, you’ve gotta remember that 99% of their jumping ability is genetic, so losing all your weight definitely isn’t the answer

There are alot of problems with trying to dunk in general. Obviously a great starting point is to be as light as possible and as strong as possible. The next is the two strength training movements that will translate most to jumping.

These are Deadlifts and squats. That is your slow speed high force end of the spectrum. The other end is just practicing jumping. The best way to improve your jumping is by jumping. If you can find a rim that is around 9’6" or so that would be an ideal situation, here is why.

With the rim at that height you should have no problem dunking and thus you will be able to practice all sorts of different dunks off one leg and off two.

Jumping is like the power clean, it’s a hard thing to do well, yes, but even after you learn the movement well it takes alot of repetition to become great. And my friend for an 8 inch increase you need to become pretty great.

Now here is the most important thing. If you just keep jumping at a regular height rim you are never going to be able to dunk I fucking guarantee it.

The reason is because you are actually trying really hard to jump its not a nice smooth quick motion. If you practice dunking on that lower rim I mentioned your body will be accustomed to jumping fast and smooth not hard and labored.

When you get to the point where you can do alot of various dunks on the lower rim, really working on trying to increase your hang time etc… then you can try to start dunking on the big rim. But let me tell you this. You may never be able to dunk on someone.

I disagree a little with shadowzz but who knows he can be right or me.

I can do many different dunks on a 9.5 rim. It wasn’t until I did leg training that I could dunk.

Before I start…

Purely losing weight will NEVER increase your hops. Actually I went from dunking at 220 to barely touching the rim at 195 when I thought that was the answer to jumping higher.

Your best bet, is deadlifts and squats, and sprints.

I have never used strength shoes so I can’t tell you if they work but there are alot of ads for them maybe they do. I can tell you there program helps alot also.

The best way to know if what you are doing works is to get a measurement. Find out your vertical now. Then add in deadlifts or squats. Reps of 5-10 should be fine and you don’t need a ton of sets long as your going up atleast every other workout. If you can add sprints do that too.

But do them outside of playing basketball. And make sure you give close to 95%. Alot of times basketball players run so fast for so long that they don’t realize they are not running all out, but a speed that allows them to stop and run for 40 minutes.

The guys on slamnation have a lethal combination of genetics and PRIME years of leg training. Meaning as a youth they were outside doing nothing but trying to dunk for hours a day.

This is great at a young age, because the tendons recover much quicker but if you did this now you can develop knee problems. Until dunking is easy I wouldn’t spend more than 1 or 2 days a week with over 12 all out attempts at dunking.

gl

Thanks for all your help guys.
I guess I will try to eat a lot of protein and develop my legs as much as possible with squats and deadlifts.

I should probably workout my upper body too. I think I need a bulk routine. I have seen a lot of routines on here but I am a beginner. How do beginners start to bulk?

I recently started working out a few weeks ago and lost 5 lbs while also doing resistance training for my legs. Specifically one legged squats off cinder blocks(can’t do regular squats because of a back injury).
Admittedly I was in really bad shape and still am but I added 4 inches to my vertical in a very short time.
Squats do wonders and quickly at that. I’ve seen this both in my own body in the past and a friends’ whose sprinting ability greatly improved with heavy squats.

[quote]Sir Crimson wrote:
You should read some of Kelly Baggett’s stuff. He has a ton of articles on how to jump higher and run faster.

You should start off by reading his Vertical Jump FAQ. After that, just scroll down and read anything that he has to say on strength, explosiveness, and jumping.

Good luck![/quote]

wow…so glad you posted that link…I went to the site and then performed the routine consisting of pushup, squat, and deadlift progressions…afterwards I couldn’t stand without shaking from the fatigue in my glutes…and my upper body had an enormous pump that I just don’t get from doing bench presses and pulldowns…dang, why are bodyweight exercises so much harder?
looks like this will be my routine for awhile now…hope the other gym members don’t miss me!

Olympic Lift for a few years. Olympic lifters always have the best vertical jump in comparison to any other pro athletes.

Search Shane Hamman on google, hes a olympic powerlifter who’s like 5’9 and can dunk without a problem i realize hes a professional record holder, but it does come to show that olympic lifting can help.

Olympic lifting isn’t the be all end all for explosiveness. The dynamic effort that is seen in Westside works well for explosiveness.

squats helped my jump alot. i dont even play basketball or practice jumping but from my squat going my jump has increased from barely getting rim to getting 3-4 inches over even though i gained about 65 pounds

[quote]Bowzer wrote:
Olympic lifting isn’t the be all end all for explosiveness. The dynamic effort that is seen in Westside works well for explosiveness.[/quote]

One spring I put on 20 pounds and my vert went up 2 inches. All because of squats and hang cleans. A combination of the dynamic and OL’s works the best in my experience.

[quote]bd78 wrote:
Thanks for all your help guys.
I guess I will try to eat a lot of protein and develop my legs as much as possible with squats and deadlifts.

I should probably workout my upper body too. I think I need a bulk routine. I have seen a lot of routines on here but I am a beginner. How do beginners start to bulk?[/quote]

NO!
What do you mean by bulk? Just gaining a bunch of massive weight so you can have higher lifts? NOT good for basketball.

Doing that, even if your vertical goes up you will lose a spring in your step. Other guards your size will seem more responsive than you, remember the more weight you gain the more you have to carry and down the court. If you were working for 1 all out sprint I would say fine, but not for basketball.

You will have to change your game to a post game, but now you have to deal with people 5 inches taller than you.

Plus once you gain the weight it can be hard to stop, you’ll always want to be a little stronger and a few more muscles.

[quote]Bowzer wrote:
Olympic lifting isn’t the be all end all for explosiveness. The dynamic effort that is seen in Westside works well for explosiveness.[/quote]

True. Olympic lifting isn’t the end all be all for explosive actions such as tackling or delivering a knockout punch. Speed box squats are superb for developing horsepower and all that other Westside stuff.

But Olympic lifts pretty much are the end all be all for jumping high (unless you can alter your genetics with some other training method). If you train like an Olympic lifter in the weight room you will jump really fucking high. The Olympic weightlifting events are pretty much centered around whose jump can move the most weight.

You jump with a weight. How much more functional can you get in terms of training to jump high.

[quote]FightingScott wrote:
Bowzer wrote:
Olympic lifting isn’t the be all end all for explosiveness. The dynamic effort that is seen in Westside works well for explosiveness.

True. Olympic lifting isn’t the end all be all for explosive actions such as tackling or delivering a knockout punch. Speed box squats are superb for developing horsepower and all that other Westside stuff.

But Olympic lifts pretty much are the end all be all for jumping high (unless you can alter your genetics with some other training method). If you train like an Olympic lifter in the weight room you will jump really fucking high. The Olympic weightlifting events are pretty much centered around whose jump can move the most weight.

You jump with a weight. How much more functional can you get in terms of training to jump high.

[/quote]

I don’t feel thats true at all. Squatting can greatly help one’s vert. The learning curve for Olympic lifts is greater than the big 3. I’m not saying to completely avoid Olympic lifting, but to neglect the benefits of squatting and even deadlifts to build one’s vert is absurd.

Squats and snatches are great. Practicing jumping is a must, u wouldn’t think it but my best leaping came after weeks of dunking in the driveway over and over again. Also don’t do plyo’s if u never lifted.

[quote]MidDistanceMac wrote:
Search Shane Hamman on google, hes a olympic powerlifter who’s like 5’9 and can dunk without a problem i realize hes a professional record holder, but it does come to show that olympic lifting can help.[/quote]

I personally witnessed Shane squat 900x3. Another friend squatted 600x3 at about 190# bwt and approx. 5’5" in height. Both could dunk a basketball, so apparently there’s something to be said for squats helping in this area?

[quote]TornadoTommy wrote:
MidDistanceMac wrote:
Search Shane Hamman on google, hes a olympic powerlifter who’s like 5’9 and can dunk without a problem i realize hes a professional record holder, but it does come to show that olympic lifting can help.

I personally witnessed Shane squat 900x3. Another friend squatted 600x3 at about 190# bwt and approx. 5’5" in height. Both could dunk a basketball, so apparently there’s something to be said for squats helping in this area?[/quote]

They must’ve altered their genetics with some other training method