Upper Body Plyometric Exercises

Most vertical jump programs only focus on plyometrics for the lower body.

Upper body plyometrics may not be as important as lower body plyometrics, but they can add crucial inches to your vertical leap, especially if you’ve hit a plateau.

They will also dramatically improve strength, speed, and explosiveness in your upper body.

3 Great Upper Body Plyometric Exercises

1. Upper Body Depth Jumps

  • This exercise is great for developing overall strength and explosiveness in your upper body.
  • To begin with, find 2 low boxes approximately 5-7 inches high.
  • Set them up on a padded surface and get yourself in a push-up position in between the boxes with one hand placed on each box.
  • Next, slightly push off the boxes so that you land with your hands in between the boxes.
  • As soon as you hit the ground, try to relax and ‘bounce’ back up on the box, minimizing the ground contact time as much as you can.
  • Keep doing this in a rhythmic motion for about5-10 reps per set, or until you can no longer maintain proper form.

2. Medicine Ball Throws

  • This is relatively simple to explain, and involves tossing a medicine ball in different ways.
  • Start with a medicine ball weight that’s not too heavy that you injure yourself, but also not too light that the workout is too easy.
  • Two variations of medicine ball exercises you can use are the overhead throw and the chest pass (like chest passing a basketball).
  • Start with 5-10 reps per set, and make sure you maintain the proper form.

3. Plyometric Pushups

  • These are pushups that are done rhythmically and explosively while elevating yourself off the ground with each repetition.
  • Try to minimize ground contact time by trying to elevate yourself in the air as soon as you hit the ground.
  • Start with 5-10 reps per set, and make sure you maintain the proper form.


Upper body plyometrics are important in vertical jump training.

For many athletes, this IS the missing link in their training that prevents them from jumping higher.

This is because most athletes never perform these exercises and therefore lack enough upper body plyometric strength.

If you want to follow a great vertical jump program that combines the best strength training exercises with the best plyometric exercises, check out our reviews of the top
vertical leap programs

My favorite program is the Jump Manual.

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4 Responses to “Upper Body Plyometric Exercises”

  1. Trevor Doge Says:

    Okay there is one thing I don’t get. My friend is 5’11 and can high jump 191cm but he says that he never does upper body work out. Locially it makes sence not to the upper body workouts because it will weigh you down. Could someone please explain to me in depth why upper body work outs are important to verticle jump.


    • Ray Says:

      When you jump, you reach up with your arms. The more “up” force your arms can generate, the higher off the ground you’ll get. It makes a several inch difference in your vert.


    • fox Says:

      jumping doesnt just require leg strength. it takes strength from your legs abs arms back to jump and to jump higher for that matter.


  2. ash Says:

    it is nuerological strength that is the gains u get with upper body


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