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Vertical jumps are an intense form of exercise, requiring maximal effort and power output. They can create significant stress to your body. Proper recovery between sets and workouts is crucial. Without sufficient recovery time, you may not get the full benefit from your workouts and may even risk injury.
Vertical jumps are a test of anaerobic power -- the ability of your body to exert maximal force as rapidly as possible. While you're jumping, your muscles rely on stored energy in the form of a compound known as ATP, sometimes called the energy currency of the cell. Breaking down ATP takes place anaerobically, without oxygen, so it supplies energy very quickly. However, after jumping, your muscles must replenish their ATP stores aerobically. Full recovery between sets can take several minutes.
Strength and Power Building
If your goal is to increase your vertical jump height, allowing for adequate recovery is critical. Your body makes gains in strength and power following your workouts, not during them. Not allowing sufficient time for recovery may even lead to decreases in power rather than gains. If your goal is muscular endurance or aerobic conditioning, shorter rest periods between sets may be appropriate, but you still need to allow for full recovery between workouts.
Because vertical jumps cause significant impact forces when you land, they can stress your joints, muscles and tendons. Plyometric exercises such as repetitive vertical jumps frequently also cause delayed-onset muscle soreness, or DOMS. To prevent repetitive stress injuries to your tissues, it's important to allow sufficient time to recover between workouts. The older your are, the more recovery time you will need.
A good work-to-rest ratio during vertical jump workouts is between one to five and one to ten. Depending on the length of your sets, this may translate to approximately two to three minutes of rest between sets. If your goal is muscular endurance rather than power, your rest periods may be shorter, around 10 to 15 seconds between sets. Allow at least 48 hours between vertical jump workouts. Depending on the intensity of your workouts, you may need to allow up to four days between sessions.