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New Post 11/12/2007 6:51 AM
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Effectiveness of Combining Strength or Speed-Strength with Depth Jumps in Same Session 
Dr. Verkhoshansky,

I am a 31 yr. old amateur athlete trying to formulate a workout plan to reach a higher level of performance in basketball and soccer, both of which I play recreationally.  I am fairly athletic for an amateur of my age, generally able to out-accelerate my opponents, and with above average vertical jumping ability (I'm 5'8, 143 lbs and can almost reach 10 ft. jumping with a running start), but am certainly not an "elite athlete."  I usually play little soccer during the winter, and am therefore planning on doing alot of weightlifting (mainly bench press, squat and deadlift, and lat pulldowns), progressing up to low repetition work which I believe is referred to as maximal tension for the next couple months.  At that point I intend to add speed strength barbell exercises, including Olympic cleans, and later depth jumps.  I have done alot of weightlifting in the past but am not nearly as strong as I used to be.  Last summer, when I really started weight training seriously after a couple years layoff, I worked up to squats with about 180 lbs for low reps, deadlifts of about 225 lbs. for single reps, and Olympic cleans using about 105 lbs.  I should surpass these numbers fairly easily this winter as I haven't lost much strength since reaching those levels, and as I never attempted 1 rep maximums last summer in those exercises, and will be trying to integrate the depth jumps into my workouts after I do surpass those numbers.

I have many questions that I can't find the answer to in Supertraining despite reading much of the text.

Should I do depth jumps during the same session as strength or speed-strength exercises or should they be the only exercise done that day?  Also, if I had the time to do 2 workouts in a day, could I do strength exercises in one session, and return to the gym to do depth jumps later that day? Am I correct that I should discontinue heavy resistance exercises after I begin the speed-strength work (mainly bench presses and squats at 30-50% of max, performed rapidly) and Olympic cleans?  Then, should I continue the speed-strength work concurrently with depth jumps?

I have been reading Supertraining, and trying to understand how to integrate depth jumps into my regimen.  The text is not clear, at least to me, with regards to whether  it is generally recommended for depth jumps to be combined with strength or speed-strength exercises in the same workout session.

For example, on page 288 of the 5th ed. of Supertraining, it states: "Strong acting plyometric methods should be done after strength exercises, but not before."  I assume depth jumps qualify as strong-acting plyometric methods.  This statement seems to suggest that they should be combined with strength exercises in the same session (which I did last summer for about 8-10 workouts with strength exercises preceding the depth jumps), but other material in the book seems to suggest otherwise.  If they should be combined in the same workout, should they be combined with only speed-strength exercises or just "strength" exercises as the above statement asserts (which I assume to mean heavy resistance, or >50% of 1rm)?

Finally, I am having a hard time distinguishing maximal plyometrics (I assume a depth jump off of a high box would qualify) which require a couple minutes rest in between repetitions from plyometrics that can be done in sets of 5-10 repetitions without rest in between.  Last summer I did depth jumps from a box of about 24 inches in sets of 7-8 repetitions of maximum effort without rest in between which did seem to improve my jumping ability.  My gym has a higher box, which I believe is 30 inches, and I plan on progressing up to using it for at least one set per workout after a few sessions with only the 24 inch box.  Would the 30 inch box depth jump probably qualify as a maximal plyometric exercise requiring a couple minutes rest in between repetitions?

For your information, I intend, or at least I would like, to continue playing basketball at a fairly high level of intensity for probably about 45 minutes-1.5 hours 3 times per week throughout my training.

I hope you can answer these questions for me, or perhaps another member could assist me.  What book would you recommend to me that may better help me plan my workouts in the future?  Supertraining is excellent, but I find it hard to plan my exercise regimen with only that text.

Marco Pignone
New Post 11/16/2007 2:27 PM
  Prof. Verkhoshansky
245 posts
1st Level Poster

Re: Effectiveness of Combining Strength or Speed-Strength with Depth Jumps in Same Session 

Dear Marco Pignone,

as in other answers or articles concerning the issue of Shock Method I have to point out that my Shock method exercises  are different from the exercises usually named  plyometric, proposed by different authors, that include also different types of Depth Jump.

So, I will talk only about the Shock Method exercises.


The Shock Method Depth Jump should be performed with the aim “to lend springy and to jump in aloft as high as possible” after dropping from 0.75 – 1.10 m height:

- 0.75 m height, for the explosive and reactive capacity improvement;

- 1.10 m height, for the strength increasing.

In a single training session, a well prepared athlete should execute not more than 4 series of 10 repetitions with 1-2 minutes of rest between each repetition and 10 - 15 minutes between the series.

This “training séance” (work out) could be used concurrently with speed - strength exercises (sprint exercises, bounces and high speed jumps) in the same training session or in different  training sessions (in the same day or in different days).

I don’t think that the use of the Shock Method Dept jumps in the same training session with the explosive strength overload exercises (Barbell squat jumps or  Russian Kettlebell jumps) is a good idea, because all these three kind of jumps have the same finalization but they have different level of training stimuli or training potential (the possibility to obtain the increase of explosive strength).

If these exercises are used in low dosage, sometime it’s possible to use them together, but in my pinion it’s better that the athlete is focused only to one type of these exercises: the choose of which of them depend from the training experience and the level of athlete.

The Shock Method Depth jump is, in the “hierarchy” of the explosive strength training means, the most powerful. In the training process it should be used only as the last step of the training stimulus increasing:  maximal effort jumps without overload  – Barbell jumps – Russian Kettlebell jumps – Shock method Depth jumps.

For the high level athletes, who already reached this last step, and need to increase more the training stimulus, I proposed a Super Method for the explosive strength improvement that consists in the use of  Depth jump and Barbell squat in the same training session: execute the Shock Method Depth jumps after the Barbell Squats (see my article in SSTM).


Now, about your specific needs.

If you are “not elite” athlete and you need to “reach a higher level of performance in basketball and soccer, both of which I play recreationally”, you should not use the training methods elaborated specifically for “elite” athletes, also if you have good results in control tests. Usually, the high level athletes have not only an high level of special physical preparedness, but they have also an high level of  organism adaptation to high volume and intensity of work loads, that is incomparable with the level of a not elite athlete.


I suggest you to not use the Super Methods, but to start using correctly, step by step, all the explosive strength exercises in their training stimulus hierarchy. These exercises should be used in different training sessions with the overload exercises, finalized to the maximal strength increasing (and, for you, it’s better in different days).

To increase the level of performance in basketball and soccer you could use the programs of Manual for coaches (for basketball players, for tennis players, for start acceleration speed improvement).


Yuri Verkhoshansky

New Post 11/16/2007 4:40 PM
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Re: Effectiveness of Combining Strength or Speed-Strength with Depth Jumps in Same Session 
Dr. Verkhoshansky,

     I greatly appreciate your taking your time to answer the questions of a recreational athlete such as myself.  Our results may not be very important to others, but some of us take our sporting success very seriously.  Your comments have been very helpful, and I look forward to reporting back to you on my results next spring.  My use of speed strength exercises and depth jumps last summer brought rapid progress, and I feel that with proper training, I will be able to get back all, or nearly all, of the athleticism I had in my mid twenties.  Given your comments, I think I made the mistake of not resting in between repetitions, and I will also try to find the time to do separate workout sessions for at least some of my depth jump work.

     I just purchased your book from a site called Elite Fitness Systems.  I hope this version is considered a good translation.  I look forward to the newer version which I'm sure we all hope you will complete next year.

Marco Pignone
New Post 11/17/2007 9:06 AM
58 posts
6th Level Poster

Re: Effectiveness of Combining Strength or Speed-Strength with Depth Jumps in Same Session 



I dont think anybody insinuated that you dont take your sporting success very seriously. And this is not the issue at hand. Selecting a set of training means is not linked with desire and how seriously you take your sports, but with other concrete factors. The question in this case is bscially if you are at the a level where you need to apply stimulation methods to progress, or you can **progress** your leg explosive force through other means, mainly a correct designed program with jump exercises, weighted & not weighted. In selecting the training means one should give thought to athethe training age, athlete level of preparadness  and implicitly athelte's ability to recover and access of recovery means, not only to sport requirments .

Doing too much too soon , or applying the meanest and baddest means of training which are used by athelthes which trained for years, apart from opening the door for a very real posibility of injury,  reduces the overall ability of the organism to adapat and **may**  prevent stabilization of results. It will also rob the lesser training means of their effect. Same apply executing depth jumps when your body is not quite ready for them.

I also beleive that for *low level* athlethes one should execute at least one mesocycle of general conditioning through the year, in adition to SPP strength programs.

So the questions are:

- can I progress my sport mastery through other means than stimulation method at my current training status ?

- does it worth to risk the potential of not being able to stabilize results and the risk of injury only for the sake of doing a method of training designed for elithe athlethes, which cannot progress anymore through other means of training , in the conditions that you probably have space of improvement through other means of training ?

If you can honestly answer "NO" to the first question, then go ahead with stimulation method. If not consider there are many other means of training which will still have a very good training effect. It is a waste of time going for meanest and baddest method , when lesser methods will still yeld a very significant training effect.

This way you will lay a very solid foundation on which you will be able to apply advanced methods safely in the year to come, you will be much more resilient to injury both in gym and field, and enjoy stable sporting results.

Dan Partelly


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