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10 Ways to Increase Your Vertical Jump 0

Posted on December 05, 2018 by Sasa Cvetkovic

David-ThompsonAnyone who has ever played basketball has dreamed about leaping past and over a defender and performing a slamdunk in the best tradition of Horace Grant and Michael Jordan. Unfortunately, for most of us this seems like an impossibility. But your inability to do this likely has less to do with your technique than it does with your ability to perform a vertical leap. That’s the purpose of this article: to help you increase your vertical jump.

It’s important to keep in mind that improving your vertical leap means making better use of your leg muscles. So if you’re going to do this, your training needs to emphasize vertical movements, such as deadlifts, Olympic lifts and squats.

When combined with a solid understanding of basketball fundamentals, and increased vertical jump can give you a real advantage on the court. Keep the following in mind if you want to achieve maximum height when you leap for the slamdunk.

1. Get Rid of Those Knots in Your Legs

Muscle knots exist throughout your body and make your muscles weaker and shorter by stripping the length of muscle tissue. Slowly run a foam roller across your muscles, focusing on sensitive spots in order to release the knots there. You should work on the following areas of your legs, devoting roughly a minute to each leg.

Calf Muscles – Position the roller below your calf while resting the opposite foot flat on the floor. Alternatively, you could cross this leg over your shin in order to increase pressure. Then roll up from the ankle to the knee. Repeat with the opposite leg.

Quadriceps – Lie flat on your stomach and placed the roller underneath the front of the thigh. Then roll it up and down from the knee to the bottom of the hip. Then switch to the other leg and repeat.

IT Band – Lie on one side with the roller position close to your hip while resting the foot of the other leg. Then roll the roller up and down along the outer thigh. You can choose to enhance the pressure by positioning one lying on top of the other. Then repeat this process with the opposite leg.

2. Hip Flexor Stretch

If you’re going to successfully increase your vertical jump, it’s essential for you to be able to extend your legs much more quickly. One way you can practice doing this and enhance your ability is to do hip stretches. Doing a hip flex or stretch means you are pulling your knee up and loosening the muscles involved. This will help to ensure that your muscles won’t be tight and prevent you from increasing your vertical jump.

In the hip flexor stretch, place your back knee right below your hip and lunge forward, pushing with your pelvis unto you begin feeling the stretch at the point where your femur meets your pelvis. Hold this position for about 2 seconds and then release. You should repeat this 10 times for each leg. Read the rest of this entry →

Getting Into a New Sport 1

Posted on November 09, 2018 by John Harris

We all know well the benefits and advantages of taking up a new sport. Not only does engaging in some kind of sport help keep your fitness in check, but it can also be a great way to ensure that you are socially healthy too. Actually, sports can be a particularly good way of ensuring that you are spending time with others, and this is something that is worth bearing in mind if you are wondering whether or not you should do so yourself. If you do want to get into a new sport, and you are not entirely sure where to begin, it might help to take a read of what’s below. In this article, we have put together some of the best advice on getting into a new sport, so that you can hopefully find it much easier to do so. As long as you have considered the following, you might find yourself getting started in a new sport before too long, and enjoying the numerous benefits that come along with that.

swimming

Deciding on Your Sport

Probably a good first step here is to make sure that you are aware of what sport you would most like to get into. There are so many sports out there which are played every day that you can’t even count them, so you know that you are not going to run out of ideas here. In fact, you might find that you have the opposite problem, and you actually struggle to narrow it down to a few sports you might like to try. Nonetheless, that is a good way of going about it, and it’s worth trying to find a way to bring your list of potential sports down to just one or two that seem worthwhile and interesting to you.

It can often be the case that a particular life situation means that you are going to lean more to one or two particular sports. For instance, it might be that your local neighborhood has a baseball team and not much else, in which case you might choose to go for that. Or you might be tall, and consider you have good chance in the world of basketball. But in general, assuming you have a number of sports to choose from, it should mostly be about what you genuinely think you would enjoy most of all. Read the rest of this entry →

Everything Athletes Need to Know about Elbow Hyperextension 0

Posted on October 27, 2018 by Joe Fleming

Thomas-SunsWhen most people think of elbow injuries, they think of overuse injuries like tennis elbow or golfer’s elbow. Overuse injuries like these are common, but so are acute elbow injuries like an elbow hyperextension.

Many professional athletes have suffered from hyperextended elbows during their careers, including former Phoenix Suns center Kurt Thomas, former Florida Gators running back Jeff Demps, and current free agent wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell.

Whether you’re a budding professional athlete or someone who enjoys the occasional recreational game, it’s important to understand elbow hyperextension. It’s especially important if your sport of choice is basketball, football, or boxing.

Read on to learn about the most common causes of this injury, along with tips on how to prevent and treat it.

What is Elbow Hyperextension?

Elbow hyperextension is an injury that occurs when the elbow is bent backward and moves beyond its normal range of motion. When the elbow is beyond its normal range, people typically experience the following symptoms:

  • A popping sound

  • Immediate pain

  • Pain when touching or moving the elbow

  • Swelling at or around the elbow

  • Redness at the elbow

  • Joint stiffness

  • Muscle spasms

  • Loss of strength in the affected arm

  • Loss of joint mobility

Sometimes, people with elbow hyperextensions also experience elbow dislocations. In severe cases, people with a hyperextended elbow may also experience elbow deformities or a reduction in circulation in the affected arm.

Some research also shows that repetitive hyperextension injuries can cause some pathological changes to the bones and soft tissues of the elbow joint. Read the rest of this entry →

Four Things Runners Need to Know to Prevent Ankle Injuries 0

Posted on October 06, 2018 by Joe Fleming

running-2Of all the injuries that can affect runners, ankle injuries are one of the most common. Even professional runners like Olympians Usain Bolt and Paula Radcliffe have dealt with ankle injuries that negatively affected their careers.

Whether you’re an Olympic hopeful or just someone who runs for fun, it’s crucial that you take steps to keep ankle injuries at bay. Not only can an injured ankle prevent you from running consistently, but it can also negatively affect your movement patterns and make other forms of exercise more difficult.

Read on to learn everything you need to know about preventing ankle injuries while running.

Common Ankle Injuries for Runners

The following ankle injuries are probably the most common ones that can affect runners:

Ankle Sprains

An ankle sprain occurs when the ligaments of the ankle are damaged or torn.

In runners, ankle sprains are often the result of a misstep when coming down from a curb, or from tripping over rocks or cracks in the road or sidewalk.

Often, sprains do not cause lasting damage, particularly if they’re mild and diagnosed early. They’re typically characterized by swelling and constant pain, even when you’re at rest.

Overuse Injuries

As their name suggests, overuse injuries are the result of overuse.

In runners, some common overuse injuries include posterior tibial tendonitis, which affects the back of the ankle, and peroneal tendonitis, which affects the inside of the ankle.

With overuse injuries, you’ll likely feel pain during activity, but not when you’re at rest.

Stress Fractures

Stress fractures are small cracks or severe bruising that affects the bone. Stress fractures can be brought on by an acute injury, like a fall, or by overuse. Runners are particularly prone to stress fractures in the ankles and the feet.

How to Prevent Ankle Injuries

In order to avoid these common ankle injuries, it’s important to take the precautionary measures. They’ll help you strengthen your ankles so that you’re more resilient. They can also correct improper movement patterns that increase your injury risk. Read the rest of this entry →

Is Sports an Expensive Activity? 0

Posted on September 22, 2018 by John Harris

tennis=2018If you’re a sports lover, then you might have noticed something: it’s not always the cheapest activity on earth. From the equipment to the clothes to supporting your local sports team, there’s always one cost or another to pay. But can we call it ‘expensive’? We’re not too sure. After all, there are millions – billions? – of people around the world who engage in some sort of physical activity, and most of them are not rich. Below, we take a look at the various costs attached to sports and try to come to some conclusion about the matter.

The Equipment

You need some equipment to play sports, even if that’s just a car to take you to the track. But most sports require much more than this. Let’s take, say, soccer. You’d need a ball, the right footwear, and a goal if you’re going to play a version of the sport that looks like the real thing. The ball will be cheap, but everything else? Those costs add up, and in the case of the footwear, will need to be replaced over time. The good news is that you generally only need to buy the bulky, most expensive pieces of equipment once.

Having the Right Gear

You can’t go out to engage in your favorite sport wearing your everyday clothes! You need the shorts, shoes, and shirts – not to mention various other apparel – that has been custom made for sports. And generally, you want to buy the best stuff: the sport is more comfortable to play if you’re wearing high-quality clothing that was designed for top-end performance. Walk into a sports store, and you might blink twice at the cost of these items, but there are cheaper ways to buy. Take a look at Nike discounts and deals, and you’ll be able to make big savings on your essential sportswear. The best clothing only looks expensive to begin with. Once you know where to look, things become much more manageable. Read the rest of this entry →

Famous Runners with Flat Feet 0

Posted on September 12, 2018 by Joe Fleming
Alan Webb

Alan Webb

Nobody would ever argue that their flat feet offered any physical advantage to their fitness regime. Instead, the postural deformity of fallen arches is known to cause an array of uncomfortable complications, including Achilles tendonitis, arthritis, plantar fasciitis, or shin splints.

However, in modern times, flat feet are no longer considered to be the immovable obstacles that they once were, and these troubles are hardly enough to prevent ambitious runners from reaching their full potential. In fact, many of the world’s greatest runners who were seemingly cursed by flat feet still managed to find a way to move faster than anyone else. To celebrate these triumphs, here is a list of three highly impressive flat-footed athletes, who will hopefully motivate you to keep your own arches marching.

Saïd Aouita

Considered one of the first famous Arab sportspeople, Moroccan born Saïd Aouita boasts an extensive list of achievements which left his competitors in the dust. His passion was firmly fixed to the track and field events, and he left his permanent mark on that scene when he won the 5,000 meters at the 1984 Summer Olympics. Saïd’s impressive résumé doesn’t end there either, as he’s set many world records too, including the fastest time for the 1,500 meters (at 3:29.46), 2,000 meters (at 4:50.80), 3,000 meters (at 7:29.45), and twice for the 5,000 meters (at 13:00.40 and 12:58.39). What’s more, these are only a small portion of the man’s complete accomplishments.

Despite attaining such monumental successes, Saïd Aouita admits that his fallen arches have been an issue during his entire career. ”My only problem is that I have flat feet, which promotes tendinitis,” he admitted to French newspaper L’Equipe. Since then, Aouita has credited his special shoes for providing the additional support he needs, which is the same solution that many similar runners have discovered for themselves. Supplementing fallen arches with an orthotic insole can help balance out the pressure on your feet and better support the adjoining ligaments and tendons.

Alan Webb

In 2007, American track and field athlete Alan Webb broke the U.S. Record for the fastest mile time ever, clocking in at 3:46.91. Said record still remains unbeaten to this very day. Alan is also known for his representation of the United States during the 2004 Summer Olympics where he ran the 1,500-meter race. Due to such an impressive biography, it’s no surprise to anyone that Nike hired him to represent their brand from 2002 – 2013. Read the rest of this entry →

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  • Vintage Athlete of the Month

    • Paul Warfield: The Perfect Receiver
      December 10, 2018 | 3:36 pm

      Warfield-DolphinsThe Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month was perfection personified as a wide receiver during his NFL career.

      Known for his fluid movement, grace and jumping ability during his 13 year NFL career, Paul Warfield was an eight-time Pro Bowl selection and key performer for the Miami Dolphins during their 17-0 campaign in 1972.

      Because the role of the wide receiver has changed so much and today’s star receivers get the ball thrown to them so many more times than in the pre-1978 era, Warfield is often overlooked when discussing all-time greats.

      But, think about this. Warfield averaged 20.1 yards per catch for his career (427 receptions, 8,565 yards) and 19.9% of his receptions went for touchdowns (85). By comparison, Julio Jones has averaged 15.5 yards per catch for his career and a touchdown in 6.9% of his receptions (46 TDs in 669 catches). Antonio Brown averages 13.4 ypc and a TD in 8.7% (70 of 804) of his receptions. Terrell Owens averaged 14.8 ypc and a TD in 14.2% of his receptions. Even Jerry Rice, considered the greatest receiver of all-time, averaged only 14.8 ypc and a TD in 12.7% of his catches.

      Read more »

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