In this post, meditation is the name of the game. Well, I guess it’s not really meditation since it’s more like getting yourself psyched up. Learning how to jump higher through visualization may sound strange, but as the popular phrase goes, “mind over matter”!
For those of you who have been involved with sports for a while you’ve almost certainly used this technique at one time or another whether you realized it or not. Visualization allows you to see yourself completing a task in a certain manner. One example that comes straight to mind is a basketball player standing at the free throw line. Many basketball players imagine themselves shooting the ball with perfect form and then watching it effortlessly go through the hoop. This use of visualiation often improves the athlete’s shot and increases his accuracy. The good news is that you can apply this technique to just about anything, including jumping!
Here is how I generally psych myself up before I jump for the rim. It will often allow me to jump just that little bit extra that I need in order to pull off a dunk that I’m working on.
- Look at the rim and tell yourself that it’s shorter than it really is. You’d be surprised how easily your brain can be tricked into thinking a certain way.
- Take a few deep breaths and begin to focus on how you’re going to make your approach to the basket.
- Grip the ball firmly, but not so much that it’s uncomfortable. This will help get the muscles in your upper body ready to do their part during the jump by increasing blood flow.
- See yourself running toward the basket and imagine exploding off the ground with incredible force. The key to this part is to continue to imagine yourself exploding up to the rim until you start to feel as if your body is lighter than it is. This takes a bit of practice!
- Once you’re ready, you should feel extra pent up energy inside that makes you feel like you can dunk on just about any height. When you get that feeling, go for it!
I hope these steps help you a little bit. I’m not a psychiatrist, so I’m not exactly sure how to put this sort of thing into words. The only thing I can tell you is that, once you get good at it, visualization is an amazing tool to add to your arsenal. As you probably guessed, it won’t instantly turn you into Jordan but it can add a couple inches to your jump almost immediately.
The best part is that you can use visualization on the fly once you feel comfortable with it. You won’t always have to stand in one spot and meditate for a while like I was showing you how to do above. Once you really get a feel for it, you’ll be able to harness that extra oomph within a split second.
Well, I hope this post was at least somewhat useful. I realize I’m not the best at explaining things like this, so if you have a question please feel free to contact me.