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Increasing your Strength to Bodyweight Ratio

A good test to track your progress to jump higher to dunk is the ratio of your maximum squat and your body weight. This is your strength to body weight ratio. Unlike strength, explosion and flexibility where increasing in these areas generally leads to increases in jumping ability, body weight isn’t as clear cut.

The reason is, two people who weigh the same could have completely different body fat and muscle percentages meaning they squat different weights. So the key here is to be lifting more weight per kilogram of body weight.

The key concept is we want to put on muscle while minimising our fat gain. One aspect that worked for me is that over 6 weeks, I lost 6kg, going from 88kg -82kg. In doing so I achieved my first one hand dunk off two feet. But then I gained 3kg going from 82-85kg. In doing so I was able to dunk off two with two hands.

How does strength to body weight ratio explain this?

When you are losing weight, naturally you will lose some strength. But as I lost 6kg, I made sure I was still squatting regularly to minimise the amount of strength I was losing. By the time I was 82kg, my squat to body weight ratio had actually increased from when I was 88kg.

The key to losing weight is very simple, no special diet necessary. To lose weight you should eat less than your body needs to maintain its current weight. How much less depends on how quickly you want to lose weight. However it is counterproductive to eat too little, your body won’t be able to train effectively.

When you are aiming to bulk up you should aim to gain muscle without too much fat. So my transition from 82kg to 85kg was a clean bulk. By doing this I squatted more per kilogram of weight.

When aiming to bulk up to gain muscle the key element is to eat enough protein, particularly after a workout. It doesn’t matter in what form, I use a combination of supplement and natural. Remember that in naturally occurring forms you have to juggle the additional calories that come with it. Even when losing weight or aiming to maintain weight, protein is the building block of muscle and so I like to take some in some form after every workout.

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