To improve your vertical jump, perform targeted exercises that build strength in the calves and quadriceps, and then stretch the leg muscles to improve flexibility. On days when you're not strength training, practice different jumping exercises.
- Build strength in your legs
To improve vertical jumps, work the calves and the quadriceps. To strengthen the quads, which are the four muscles on the front of the thigh, perform a variety of squats, including single-leg squats. To work the calves, stand on the edge of a stair, and raise your heels.
- Increase your flexibility
Improve vertical jumps through flexibility training, since tight muscles decrease the body's jumping ability. Use a foam roller to remove the knots in your legs, or try exercises that stretch your hamstrings, calves, quads and hip flexors.
- Practice jumping
When you're not strength training, perform a series of different jumping exercises. Perform a no-arm hop by jumping continuously on one leg with your arms against your sides. To do a split-leg lunge, move into a lunge position, jump, and then switch leg positions. To perform a box jump, stand on a box, jump off it, and then immediately jump on the rebound. Do an ankle hop by performing a series of small jumps on one leg while keeping the knee straight. Try to do 10 to 20 reps of each exercise.