depth jumping/shock training can significantly increase power production and vertical jump height!!! jumping can significantly increase power production and vertical jump height…

It’s been established in both Eastern and Western studies that depth jumping, or shock training, can significantly increase power production and vertical jump height. This is mostly due to the following factors:

1. An increase in reactive strength

Reactive strength refers to the capacity to rapidly switch from an eccentric/yielding action to a concentric/overcoming action. Lack of reactive strength will lead to a longer coupling time and, consequently, lower force and power production during the overcoming portion of the movement (Kurz 2001).

2. Neural adaptations

Viitasalo et al. (1998) found a different neural response between athletes doing a lot of jumping and regular individuals when doing a depth jump. Jumpers were able to activate more motor units during the movement (greater EMG) and plan the motor command faster (higher and more rapid pre-action EMG).

Kyröläinen et al. (1991) also found that 16 weeks of depth jump training led to better jumping efficiency. Schmidtbleicher (1987 and 1982) found that trained subjects were able to use the kinetic energy produced during the eccentric portion of a depth jump, while in untrained subjects this eccentric period was actually inhibiting instead of potentiating!

Finally, Walshe et al. (1998) concluded that the superiority of depth jump training over regular jump training was due to “the attainment of a higher active muscle state,” meaning that the fast eccentric portion of the movement increased muscle activation.

3. Structural adaptations

Depth jumps have been reported to cause some muscle soreness and muscle damage (Horita et al. 1999). This is understandable since the eccentric force produced is very high, albeit rapid. This may indicate that depth jumps are a powerful stimulus to stimulate structural adaptations.

However, depth jumps don’t lead to significant hypertrophy. So the nature of the structural adaptations following depth jumping isn’t quantitative in nature, but qualitative: an improvement of the strength and contractile capacity of each muscle fiber.

Soviet literature gives the following guidelines when practicing depth jumps:


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