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Relationships Between Explosive and Maximal Triple Extensor Muscle Performance and Vertical Jump Height

Chang, Eunwook1; Norcross, Marc F.1; Johnson, Sam T.1; Kitagawa, Taichi2; Hoffman, Mark1

The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: February 2015 - Volume 29 - Issue 2 - p 545–551
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000000652
Original Research

Chang, E, Norcross, MF, Johnson, ST, Kitagawa, T, and Hoffman, M. Relationships between explosive and maximal triple extensor muscle performance and vertical jump height. J Strength Cond Res 29(2): 545–551, 2015—The purpose of this study was to examine the relationships between maximum vertical jump height and (a) rate of torque development (RTD) calculated during 2 time intervals, 0–50 milliseconds (RTD50) and 0–200 milliseconds (RTD200) after torque onset and (b) peak torque (PT) for each of the triple extensor muscle groups. Thirty recreationally active individuals performed maximal isometric voluntary contractions (MVIC) of the hip, knee and ankle extensors, and a countermovement vertical jump. Rate of torque development was calculated from 0 to 50 (RTD50) and 0 to 200 (RTD200) milliseconds after the onset of joint torque. Peak torque was identified and defined as the maximum torque value during each MVIC trial. Greater vertical jump height was associated with greater knee and ankle extension RTD50, RTD200, and PT (p ≤ 0.05). However, hip extension RTD50, RTD200, and PT were not significantly related to maximal vertical jump height (p > 0.05). The results indicate that 47.6 and 32.5% of the variability in vertical jump height was explained by knee and ankle extensor RTD50, respectively. Knee and ankle extensor RTD50 also seemed to be more closely related to vertical jump performance than RTD200 (knee extensor: 28.1% and ankle extensor: 28.1%) and PT (knee extensor: 31.4% and ankle extensor: 13.7%). Overall, these results suggest that training specifically targeted to improve knee and ankle extension RTD, especially during the early phases of muscle contraction, may be effective for increasing maximal vertical jump performance.

1School of Biological and Population Health Sciences, College of Public Health and Human Sciences, Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon; and

2Sports Medicine, Department of Athletics, University of San Francisco, San Francisco, California

Address correspondence to Eunwook Chang,

Copyright © 2015 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.