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Improving Vertical Leap: Options


Hello, guys. I have a question that I have been thinking about and don't really know the answer to. Ok, let's just say that someone needed to work on all three types of strength for his vertical jump (Maximal,Rate of force development, and reactive(plyometric)strength).

Which one the these methods would help him the most in 12 weeks (just an alotted time period that I have chosen.)???

1st choice: a 4 week cycle of Maximal strength building, followed by a 4 week cycle of RFD strength building, followed by a 4 week cycle of Plyos. And during each cycle you would workout 2 times per week.(Mon and Fri)

2nd choice: three 4 week cycles of doing Maximal strength on Monday, RFD work on Wednesday, and Plyos on Friday.

3rd choice: three 4 week cycles of doing a workout with all three combined on Mondays and Fridays. (Example: 2 max strength exercises, 2 RFD exercises and 2 plyos exercises on Mondays and the same for Fridays)

See, my problem is that technically you will be working all three strengths either way, but which one would give you the most gains?????

Thanks again guys.


Depends all on the person's weaknesses.


Years ago i was reading a Soviet article in muscle and fitness magazine about Olympic weightlifting. It said that periodization for a limited time frame was to be done working on everything at once(the so called"complex" or "multi-method" of training). In other words work on maximal AND explosive strength at the same time. Workouts should be low volume BUT frequent!

In other words 3x per week.If your weaknesses are all about the same(in magnitude)then the amount of work for each should be even.!12 weeks should be divided into two 6 week cycles. Let call the first prepatory and the second competitive.Pm if you want more details.
Brandon Green


"Four different protocols were tested to determine which produced the superior sport results as measured by improved proficiency in competition: All four employed three 6 week stages (mesocycles):

  1. Plyometrics -- Weight Training -- Depth jumps
  2. Plyometrics -- Weight Training -- Weight training;
  3. Plyometrics -- Plyometrics -- Plyometrics;
  4. Complexes -- Complexes -- Complexes (a "complex" is a workout comprised of a highly structured combination of Plyometrics, Weight Training and Depth Jumps)
    In the short run (over six weeks), Protocol #4 was superior. In the long run (over an entire 18 week mesocycle), Protocol #1 proved superior."

Short Term Peridization needs to be addressed in reference to your Long Term Periodization.

"Long-term periodization, according to the Soviet originators of the system (Dr. Yuri Verkoshansky), involves a carefully planned approach to one's entire sports career."

Since you're unique (strengths & weaknesses)...a plan must be developed suited to your needs.


I think this info may be applicable in a different way. Why don't you use complexes for 6 weeks, then shift to a protocol like #1? I'd say do this:
3 weeks: Max strength + some jumping/bounding drills
3 weeks: max strength/RFD + jumping/bounding drills
3 weeks: RFD/max strength maintenance + jumping drills + some depth jumping
3 weeks: max strength maintenance/RFD maintenance + bounding/jumping + depth jumps


Their was actually an article on improving your speed and verticle jump but i cant find it now.


It's hard to see what you need to improve your vertical jump without atleast some help. If you can give me your height, weight, and your max squat, power clean (or some kind of rate of force development exercise), your running vert and standing vert, it would really help me to help you.



I can give you my best numbers and hopefully you can help me to get my vert up. Thanks in advance. 6'00" tall, about 187-190 bodyweight. Standing vertical about 30' best. Running in the past was close to 36'. Best power clean and squat clean at that bodyweight was 215. Thanks.



Oh and by the way, my best parallel squat has been 405. Don't know what it is now. Thanks again in advance.



You want to include all the various qualities you need but shift the focus over time (conjugate training). At the bottom of this page is an example of how you might go setting it up:


Notice how in the 2nd phase strength work is kept down to a maintenance level while it is really emphasized in the first.


Thanks Kelly. I appreciate it. I see what you mean by conjugate and also see the periodization involved. However, how would you cycle that into a weekly microcycle? How would you space the two days training in the week? Thanks again.



Any way you want to really.
Mon and Thurs
Tues and Fri
Mon and Fri

Throw in a couple of upper body days and you'll be set.