In 1992, Wesley Snipes and Woody Harrelson starred in the movie, “White Men Can’t Jump”. Controversies and issues of racism were greatly associated with the title of this movie. We don’t want to dig deeper into this issue regarding races and colors but they make people wonder if indeed one race is more inclined to jump higher. For basketball, this seems to be the case. So does it indeed hold water? Is it true?
Most people revert to the idea of genes when asked why it seems that African-Americans can perform better at basketball. Partly, this concept of genes holds true. As the results of the Olympics would tell us, people from the African Continent have steadily dominated the 800 to 10,000 meter runs and an African-American held on to the 100-meter dash. But the world is yet to see any of them succeed in swimming.
So what does this imply?
Given the results and based on the development of the human physiology, each race develops specific muscle groups which enable them to perform better at a given sport. So yes, African-Americans indeed have the advantage of explosiveness and strength needed to dash for short distances and to jump higher for basketball but they are less inclined to swimming or pole vaulting for their muscles are heavier.
Genetics, or nature as some may one to term it, gives an edge and in knowing that the other guy has an advantage, the only option is to give up, right? Wrong. An edge puts one ahead but it does not determine success. Yes, they have nature on their side but if you choose to, you’ll have nurture on yours. Don’t get what I mean? It’s simple, train yourself to jump higher for basketball. After all, nothing beats the human will to succeed.
To jump higher for basketball, there is an array of exercises and routines which you can utilize. Just a key note, they must target your legs and thigh regions. Perhaps the most effective way is weight training. Doing leg presses on a leg press machine builds the quad muscles through inward and outward movements, leg extensions by sitting against a wall until the thigh is parallel with the floor, these are the best ways to start with weight training.
After doing your quads, another important muscle group you need to focus on is the calves. The simplest and most effective way to work your claves is by raising your toes. To work this out to a maximum, you’ll again need a wall to provide you with resistance. Then by utilizing one foot, push up and down. Always remember to focus the weight in front of the foot. Do this progressively and start slowly for it can tear the muscles if forcibly done.
Of course, after the weight and resistance training, it is important to incorporate flexibility and actually practice jumping. Plyometrics will allow you to do both and will not obliged you to have a specific environment to train. In fact, the exercises to jump higher for basketball suggest that you can do them inside your house.