I know if you are reading this article that you agree that having a great vertical leap is probably the most important skill to have in basketball aside from being able to shoot. If you think this is true then you will love this article. Strength training exercises for basketball have to be structured for athletic performance. If you can’t improve your athleticism working out then you are not working out properly. Check out the following 2 exercises that I guarantee will help you improve your athleticism while helping you to increase your vertical jump.
1. The Single Arm Overhead Kettlebell Snatch: By now you should know about the ancient kettlebell unless you have been living under a rock somewhere. This ancient strength and conditioning device is number one when trying to mold an athletic body. There are an array of lifts that you can perform with the kettlebell, but for this article I am going to discuss the overhead snatch.
The single arm overhead snatch involves you taking a single kettlebell and vertically pulling it with explosive core strength from between your legs (or off of the ground) and locking it out over your head. To do this lift you first have to learn the proper technique before trying to execute it. To begin, you must be able to properly perform a single arm swing with the kettlebell by utilizing a technique known as the hip snap. The hip snap involves you having to constantly and fluently flex and extend at the hips and knees in order to create the necessary momentum to swing the bell back and forth like a pendulum.
From this motion you then want to be familiar with how to pull the bell vertically from between your legs up to a lateral position to your head. To do this you want to mimic the motion of pulling a bow back with your arm. Next, when you bring the kettlebell to this high position laterally to your head you then want to vertically punch your palm towards the sky locking the kettlebell out over your head. This concludes the snatch. This is one of the best explosive strength training exercises that is excellent for increasing your vertical for basketball!
2. The Barbell Back Squat: This traditional strength training exercise is great for helping you develop the necessary hip, back, glute, and thigh strength to get you to dunking ability as quickly as possible. To perform this exercise you will need a barbell and squat rack. Step underneath the barbell and firmly place the barbell on a low level position aligning across the very back of your shoulders (Not on your traps at your neck). This lower bar position allows you to better handle a greater amount of weight therefore giving you more hip, glute, and hamstring power for better jumping ability.
Make sure that when you perform the squat that you lower your body until your thighs are at least parallel to the floor. You should feel tension up and down your spine by keeping your shoulders retracted throughout the movement. This will ensure that you stabilize the weight throughout the movement. This exercise in conjunction with the overhead kettlebell snatch should be an integral part of your strength training workouts for basketball. Remember that anyone can train hard, but only the champions train smart!
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