Get Vertical Program (by Christian Thibs)

This topic contains 18 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by Fraser Fraser 1 month, 2 weeks ago.

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  • #7506
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    Following Vert Shock, which increased my vertical from 22.5″ to 26″ with a run up and 21.6″ to 24.8″ from standing, i’m switching to a gym-based program involving barbell work with some plyometrics.

    I settled on this one https://www.t-nation.com/workouts/get-strong-get-fast-get-vertical by Christian Thibaudeau whose opinion I value.

    I’ve made minor edits to it which you’ll see as the program progresses, but the general outline of 4 workouts/wk for 6 weeks is maintained.

    16 July

    Running vert test – 66cm/26 inch
    Standing vert test – 61cm/24 inch (did get higher a few weeks ago so not a PB)

    Floor to ceiling jumps – 3 x 8
    Hex Bar Squat Jumps – 3 x 8 x 30kg
    Speed Squat – 5 x 2 x 60kg (45 secs)
    Half Back Squat – 2 x 5 x 100kg, 2 x 5 x 105kg
    RDL – 6 x 70kg, 3 x 6 x 80kg

    The program said “vertical jump 3 x 8” but didn’t elaborate, and a b’ball playing friend suggested floor to ceiling jumps as it teaches me to utilise full knee bend. You don’t really need a ceiling, just touch the floor then explode up with arms overhead. Also have seen hex bar recommended for jump squats and it felt really good to do.

    18 July

    Bench Press – 4 x 8 x 70kg
    Barbell Row – 4 x 8 x 70kg
    Push Press – 4 x 8 x 40kg
    Chin Ups – 4 x 8
    Leg Raises – 3 x 12 (60 secs)

    Rows were a bit tough, shouldn’t go higher just wanted to use the same weight as bench. Both presses can go up in weight next week, and the guideline of 6-8 reps allows some leeway. This was meant to be done yesterday but I was super busy and needed to work until 3.30am so I used my free time to nap instead of lift.

    Below is a still from my jump videos where I hit 26 inches, meaning another 5 inches needed to touch the rim.

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  • #7507
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    19 July

    Depth Jump – 3 x 8 x 50cm
    DB Split Squat Jumps – 3 x 8 x 7kg (3.5kg per hand)
    Power Clean – 4,3,3,3 x 80kg
    Top Squat ISO Push – 3 x 5 x 6 secs
    Bulgarian Split Squat ISO – 3 x 4 x 40kg per leg (5 sec pause at 90 degree)
    Swiss Ball Weighted Crunch – 3 x 12 x 20kg

    20 July

    Rowing Machine – 4 x 500m (2 mins) in 1:54.6, 1:49.7, 1:55.7, 1:50.6

    I don’t think rowing will take away from my lifting sessions, if anything it’s active recovery even though slightly tiring. A few new exercises for me on Thursday, the isometrics were weird and the depth jumps were higher than I was used to but I adapted quickly.

    For the top squat i’ve seen someone put the barbell UNDER the safety pins and push up on them, which only works if the squat rack is bolted to the floor. Mine isn’t, so instead I put a heavy weight (200kg) and held it off the pins each rep. Possible I need to set it so i’m less upright next week. Here it is anyway..

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  • #7508
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    21 July

    Incline Press – 12,12,12,10 x 50kg
    Incline DB Row – 4 x 10 x 20kg
    Close Grip Bench Press – 12,9,7,6 x 60kg
    A1 EZ Curls – 4 x 12 x 21kg
    A2 EZ Decline Skull Crushers – 4 x 10 x 21kg
    DB Preacher Curl (self assisted) 3 x 5 x 11kg (5 sec eccentric)
    Stir The Pot (Abs) – 3 x 30 secs

    My work capacity has suffered after so long out the gym. Complete inability to repeat the same number of reps in the close grip bench but I refused to lower the weight to hit the target reps. This is quite a long session and arguably too much given it’s written as improving vertical jump. I’m not one to argue with beach weights though.

    Here’s my close grip bench press 1st set.

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  • #7622
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    23 July

    Vert Re-Test – 58cm/22.8″
    Floor to Ceiling Jumps – 3 x 8
    Hex Bar Squat Jumps – 3 x 8 x 30kg
    Speed Squat – 5 x 2 x 60kg (45 secs)
    1/2 Back Squat – 5 x 105kg, 5 x 110kg, 5,4 x 115kg
    RDL – 4 x 6 x 80kg
    Stomach Vacuums – 4 x 10 secs

    Experiencing higher gravity today, could barely get up the wall in vert test. Have been feeling the effect of weight training and unlike Vert Shock I could see my jumps staying poor until the program is over. No panic, that’s how weight training differs from plyo’s, super-compensation and all that.

    I pushed harder in back squats while being aware that my endurance is poor and I can’t repeat the same weight as well. 5 x 115kg is still not great given i’m squatting higher than usual, and I should really be in the 130kg range by the end of 6 weeks.

    I’m back over 70kg BW now, likely due to a higher carb intake. Macros for the last week averaged P142 C254 F77 Cals 2270.

    Here’s jump squats from today:

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  • #7937
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    24 July

    Bench Press – 4 x 8 x 72.5kg
    Barbell Rows – 4 x 8 x 70kg
    A1 Push Press – 2 x 8 x 45kg, 2 x 8 x 47.5kg
    A2 Chin Ups – 4 x 8 x BW
    Leg Raises – 3 x 12

    26 July

    Depth Jump – 3 x 8 x 50cm
    DB Split Squat Jumps – 3 x 8 x 3.5kg
    Power Clean – 4 x 4 x 80kg (new technique)
    Top Squat ISO Push – 3 x 5 x 6 secs
    Bulgarian Split Squat ISO – 4 x 40kg, 2 x 4 x 45kg per leg (5 sec pause at 90 degree)
    Swiss Ball Weighted Crunch – 3 x 12 x 20kg

    I have crappy form on power cleans so i’m trying to make through I pass through the pull phase with bar contact mid-hip, which requires chest up, slightly wider grip and thinking about coming round my knees and exploding up. Holding a good position was more tiring but I managed to get 4 reps every set.

    27 July

    Rowing Machine – 2 x 1000m row
    3:44.2 (with a drag factor of 123)
    3:49.6 (DF 137)

    A slightly higher drag factor suits me as I can put more effort into each stroke but take longer between strokes. That being said, I was knackered for the 2nd one and almost came to a halt in the final 250m, going at a pace of 2:08/500m. Doing this the day after legs and still getting under 3:45 is fine for me, there’s a work competition around 11th August and I want to get around 3:30-3:35 if possible.

  • #7938
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    28 July

    Incline Press – 4 x 12 x 52.5kg
    Machine Rows – 4 x 12 x 42.5kg
    Close Grip Bench Press – 4 x 10 x 60kg
    A1 BB Curl – 4 x 12 x 23kg
    A2 Decline Skull Crusher – 4 x 12 x 23kg
    DB Preacher Curl w Assist – 3 x 4 x 12.5kg (5 secs down)
    Stir The Pot – 3 x 30 secs

    I was on the Isle of Man so did this in a local gym, hence the machine rows.

    30 July

    Vert Re-Test – 57cm/22.4″
    Floor to Ceiling Jumps – 3 x 9
    Hex Bar Squat Jumps – 3 x 8 x 30kg
    Speed Squat – 5 x 2 x 60kg (45 secs)
    1/2 Back Squat – 4 x 4 x 110kg
    RDL – 4 x 6 x 80kg
    Stomach Vacuums – 4 x 10 secs

    Flight delayed so really crappy day and this was 8pm session, no enthusiasm to do vert test or back squats but I powered through.

    31 July

    Bench Press – 4 x 8 x 75kg
    Barbell Rows – 4 x 8 x 70kg
    Push Press – 4 x 8 x 50kg
    Weighted Chin Ups – 4 x 8 x 5kg
    Leg Raises – 3 x 12

    Building up my bench again, feel weak after 9 weeks off. Here’s my chin ups, starting to add weight again while keeping it strict.

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  • #7980
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    2 August

    Depth Jumps – 3 x 8 x 50cm
    DB Split Squat Jumps – 3 x 8 x 3.5kg
    Power Clean – 3 x 85kg, 3 x 4 x 80kg
    Top Squat ISO – 3 x 5 x 6 secs
    Bulgarian Squat ISO – 3 x 4 x 50kg (5 secs)

    Wrong approach to power cleans, think improving RFD is more important than maxing out the weight I use. If anything I should drop it to 75kg and work on form. I narrowed my grip slightly and that was effective. Top squat is a killer.

    3 August

    Rowing Machine – 10 x 250m (1 min rest) average of 55 secs

    Wondering whether this workout is having a negative effect on my Monday session. It’s for a competition at work which should be scheduled for next week, so after that I can have Fridays to recover and foam roll.

  • #8002
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    4 August

    Incline Press – 55kg x 12,12,11,10
    Incline DB Rows – 4 x 11 x 20kg
    Close Grip Bench Press – 4 x 10 x 60kg
    A1 EZ Curl – 2 x 11 x 26kg, 2 x 11 x 28.5kg
    A2 Decline Skull Crusher – 2 x 11 x 26kg, 2 x 11 x 28.5kg
    DB Preacher Curl w Assist – 3 x 5 x 13.5kg (5 secs down)

    End of week three! Nice to start getting my strength back, two weeks ago I was curling 21kg bar and already up to 28.5kg. Think I should be around 35-40kg for 10. This is still not the main focus of the program so i’m not overly pushing it in these upper body sessions. Doing 8 sets of 10 seconds of stomach vacuums every day in August so i’ve scrapped the other ab work.

  • #8017
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    6 August

    Vert Re-Test – 59cm/23.2″
    Floor to Ceiling Jumps – 3 x 8
    Hex Bar Squat Jumps – 3 x 8 x 45kg
    Speed Squat – 5 x 2 x 75kg (45 secs)
    1/2 Back Squat – 4 x 120kg, 3,2,2,2 x 125kg
    RDL – 3 x 90kg, 3 x 100kg, 2 x 3 x 110kg
    Stomach Vacuums – 8 x 10 secs (doing these daily)

    Week 4-6 sees heavier squats and in some cases fewer reps. Surprised myself with RDL, filmed it to check back stayed flat.

    7 August

    Bench Press – 6 x 80kg, 4,4,4,6 x 85kg
    Barbell Rows – 5 x 6 x 70kg
    Push Press – 4 x 4 x 55kg
    Weighted Chin Ups – 4 x 6 x 10kg

    9 August

    Rowing Machine – 800m (~2:45) 300m (1:10)

    This was a 3 x 1000m rowing challenge but we ended up attempting 800,800,800,600 with me on first and last legs. Didn’t recover at all well and completely blew up trying to hold any kind of pace the second time and had to change. Kind of ruined it for the team as it was my suggestion to stop at 800m on my row as I felt my pace dropping. We came 3rd out of 3.

    Evening Session:

    Depth Jumps – 3 x 8 x 70cm
    DB Split Squat Jumps – 3 x 8 x 7kg
    Power Clean – 5 x 3 x 75kg
    Top Squat ISO – 4 x 5 x 3 secs
    Bulgarian Squat ISO – 2 x 4 x 50kg, 4 x 55kg (7 secs)

    Power Cleans were too easy and I haven’t learned the new technique well enough to consider it practice. Depth jumps weren’t too bad at all given the height, needed high level of focus to avoid injury.

    Here’s a few depth jumps from 70cm…

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  • #8018
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    11 August

    Incline Press – 4 x 9 x 60kg
    Incline DB Rows – 4 x 8 x 22.5kg
    Close Grip Bench Press – 4 x 9 x 65kg
    A1 EZ Curl – 4 x 8 x 31kg
    A2 Decline Skull Crusher – 4 x 8 x 31kg

    I did stomach vacuums for abs and skipped the preacher curl because I was short on time and it’s not having an impact on my jumping ability. I rolled my ankle on Friday, the positive being that’s the longest time I have in a week before my next lower body session. Still feel it today (Sunday) but since i’m not doing any change of direction I should be okay jumping on it on Monday.

  • #8049
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    13 August

    Vert Test – 57cm/22.4″
    Floor to Ceiling Jumps – 3 x 8
    Hex Bar Squat Jumps – 3 x 8 x 45kg
    Speed Squat – 5 x 2 x 75kg (45 secs)
    1/2 Back Squat – 3,3 x 125kg, 3 x 130kg, 1 x 135kg, 1 x 130kg
    RDL – 5 x 3 x 100kg

    I had to wear an ankle strap and it was pissing it down with rain so my vert test wasn’t too enthusiastic. Still I think it’s reflective of how I feel relative to last week, legs are a bit heavy. I stuck my barbell inside the rack so I could use the safety bars, meaning I tried to go heavier on squats and failed a double at 135kg. Squatting to 90 degree knee bend feels so unstable and I really dislike it, shallower or deeper would be fine but there’s something about changing direction at that position that feels horrible.

    14 August

    Bench Press – 6,6,5,5,5 x 85kg
    Barbell Rows – 5 x 6 x 70kg
    Push Press – 4 x 6 x 55kg
    Weighted Chin Ups – 4 x 5 x 20kg

    Here’s Skwats from Monday:

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  • #8266
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    16 August

    Depth Jump – 3 x 8 x 70cm
    DB Split Squat Jump – 3 x 8 x 7kg
    Power Clean – 5 x 3 x 75kg
    Bulgarian Squat ISO – 3 x 4 x 50kg (7 secs)

    I skipped Top Squat as I was short on time and had a very active day ahead helping a friend move house. Power Cleans were better, after reading up on the technique I stopped using lifting straps, had a slightly wider hand position and worked on aggressive hip extension for the “second pull”. This made the weight ‘pop’ a bit more and I worked on keeping my feet fixed as I often take a step back to catch the weight.

    Here’s a slow-mo of 70cm depth jump. Notice i’m limiting how much I allow my knees to bend to absorb the force before rebounding up.

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  • #8341
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    18 August

    Incline Bench Press – 4 x 9 x 60kg
    Incline DB Row – 4 x 8 x 22.5kg
    Close Grip Bench Press – 4 x 8 x 67.5kg
    A1 EZ Curl – 4 x 8 x 31kg
    A2 Skull Crushers – 4 x 8 x 31kg

    Skipped the preacher curl again, it seems excessive and makes no contribution to jumping ability. End of week 5, ankle has almost healed. I’m feeling the effects of consistent training even if it’s only 5 weeks and my body needs a break.

    I think I missed recent calorie counts so here are the averages from the last two weeks:
    6-12 Aug = P145 C262 F85 Cals 2390
    13-19 Aug = P145 C246 F76 Cals 2250

    I had a few slices of pizza and a massive burger in the last week and possibly under-rated the calorie counts. My diet has been relaxed but still on track, i’m around 71kg and started this program at 69.5kg. Weight gain clearly isn’t the goal but I know I can still improve my power to weight ratio with some extra overall weight.

  • #8343
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    20 August

    Vert Test – 59.5cm/23.5″
    Floor to Ceiling Jumps – 3 x 8
    Hex Bar Squat Jumps – 3 x 8 x 45kg
    Speed Squat – 5 x 2 x 75kg (45 secs)
    1/2 Back Squat – 3 x 125kg, 3,2,3,3 x 130kg
    RDL – 5 x 3 x 100kg

    Slightly higher back squat today, from 2 inches higher than previously. My full squats are to a 24cm box and this is significantly higher, so that knees are at 90 degrees. These were the most enjoyable ones and I don’t think I can do 3 x 130kg to depth so it is allowing me to squat more. Pleased with vert because I know my legs will be better after a deload/rest week. My P.B. is 63cm but most of vert shock I was hitting 60cm so to almost match that here is cool.

    Here’s the vert test, I did 3-4 jumps and you can see the penultimate one was an almost identical chalk mark. My 63cm jump was a real stretch with the arm and left me off balance, so a controlled 59cm is promising.

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  • #8348
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    21 August

    Bench Press – 5 x 4 x 90kg
    Barbell Rows – 5 x 5 x 75kg
    Push Press – 5 x 4 x 60kg
    Weighted Chin Ups – 5 x 5 x 20kg

    Such a nice and simple session, still effective. If they put this in Vert Shock it would have made things so much better rather than losing a lot of my strength.

    22 August

    TKE Stretch (P414) – 10 x 5 secs
    Flexion Gapping (P418) – 40 secs
    BB Heel Cord Smash (P426) – 50 secs
    Spread and pull, Toe Dorsi & Toe Plantar (P440-441) – 50 secs
    Single Leg Flex and Extension Rotation (P371) – 90 secs

    These are from “Becoming a Supple Leopard” with page numbers. Thought i’d detail my soft tissue & mobility work since I haven’t done any up until now. The stretch on page 371 was magic for my hips and I felt so loose afterwards. I’ll do more on Saturday so that it doesn’t take me too long to be fresh for a re-test. I don’t think I need a whole week off, perhaps with legs on the 23rd I could do my final test on the 30th.

  • #8368
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    23 August

    Depth Jump – 3 x 8 x 70cm
    DB Split Squat Jump – 3 x 8 x 7.5kg
    Power Clean – 3,3 x 82.5kg, 1 x 87.5kg, 1 x 90kg, 0 x 95kg
    Top Squat ISO – 4 x 5 x 3 secs
    Bulgarian Squat ISO – 4 x 55kg, 2 x 4 x 50kg (7 secs)

    Calf Stretch – 60 secs
    TKE Stretch (P414) – 10 x 5 secs

    I thought I’d try and find my 1RM in power cleans, quite disappointed it isn’t higher. Looking at my recent PB’s I haven’t gone above 85kg but at the same time it’s rarely in my program. On top of my regular stretches I added in terminal knee extension and calf stretching. This is my last bit of lower body exercise for a while and now I want to recover and prepare for the final vert test next week.

    I’ll move upper body weights to tomorrow which will be the final part of the six week program, then I’ll write up a review and make a video.

  • #8369
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    24 August

    Incline Bench Press – 4 x 8 x 55kg
    Incline DB Row – 4 x 8 x 20kg
    Close Grip Bench Press – 4 x 8 x 60kg
    A1 EZ Curl – 3 x 8 x 33.5kg
    A2 Skull Crushers – 3 x 8 x 33.5kg

    Busy tomorrow so did this a day early. I reduced the weight in most exercises to give myself an easier session as it’s not doing much for my vert. I think I’ll do an easy jogging session next week along with some static stretching to aid recovery in my legs.

  • #8384
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    27 August

    TKE Stretch (P414) – 10 x 5 secs
    Calf Stretch with Skipping Rope – 2 x 1 min
    Posterior Chain Floss (P409) – 40 extensions
    Toe Dorsi & Toe Plantar (P441) – 50 secs

    That posterior chain floss was miraculous, my legs were really loosened up by it. I had some protein and took a hot bath after this, meaning my legs were ultra relaxed for the rest of the day. I will do a full warm-up on the 29th but no actual jumps, and then I’ll test myself on the 30th.

  • #8409
    Fraser
    Fraser
    Keymaster

    30 August

    If I don’t post on Sunday it’s because I couldn’t get any higher…

    Vert Test (standing) – 64cm/25.2in
    Vert Test (running) – 67cm/26.4in

    I had a tape measure hanging off the hoop with 5 inches spare but I touched it comfortably, so I’m calling it 26.5 inch rather than 26 inches (31 inch is me touching the rim). I felt good but not great today, took a few standing jumps to get in the groove. In both cases getting a little bit lower was effective for me. I read Kelly Baggett’s VJ Bible and as a two-footed jumper it said I rely on strength so need to take advantage of that with a lower starting position.

    I’ll test my standing again on Sunday and if I can beat that I’ll go down to the court as well, otherwise that’s the 6 week program over. If I were to repeat it I’d take out the isometrics and stick in either hip thrusts, front squat or heavy hex bar deadlifts. I’d also do full squats, as that half squat crap was terrible.

    Here’s a few stills and my standing jump PB

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