If you want to dunk, you're going to need ups. So check out the ways you can a spring in your step and thrill the crowd -- even if it's only the one you hear cheering for you in your head.
Step 1: Stretch and jog Stretch your legs and warm up your calves and thighs. Jog to loosen up daily -- don't challenge muscles without warming them first or you risk pulling one.
Step 2: Run up stairs Run up and down the stairs, pushing off of your toes to flex your calves and build muscle. Wear a weight vest after you've trained a while. Stop if your legs feel fatigued or strained.
TIP: Hop up the stairs on one foot and down on the other. Alternate sides.
Step 3: Do crunches Perform stomach crunches to condition and tighten everything. Lie flat on the floor, initially lifting your shoulders slightly without straining the rest of your back. Repeat.
Step 4: Do deep knee bends Bend into a crouch, back straight, as low as you can go. Do 10 to 15 reps and increase your reps as your legs grow stronger. Add bench presses to further tighten muscles in your back and arms, to help get height on your leap.
TIP: Ask a friend to attend you when lifting weights.
Step 5: Jump rope Jump rope on your toes and work on your rhythm.
Step 6: Leap and raise knees Stand with your legs shoulder-width apart and your knees bent. Leap straight up, snapping your knees into your chest, landing on the balls of your feet. Repeat a few times at first and build from there.
Step 7: Run and leap vertically Run, using quick short steps, and spring vertically. Use your arms to get all you can into it. Mark a place to touch on a wall to measure your progress.
Step 8: Drop and spring back up Step back off of a box, dropping on both feet and elevating instantly upon contact with the floor. Spring up a couple times, pretending the floor is on fire. Use larger boxes as your level improves.
FACT: In 2009, the High Jump World Record was just over 8 feet, set by Cuba's Javier Sotomayor in 1993.