Squat Heavy to Jump Higher!
We've been getting a lot of questions about the rationale behind the Dynamic Sessions in the SquatStrong program. Most people are interested in whether or not there is a "scientific" basis for the sets and reps or if we're just blowing smoke.
Well, according to most of the research available and a lot of practical experience, combining dynamic and heavy squats with plyometric activities is a potent combo for increasing leg power.
Squats that involve moving at high velocities and/or at high weights activate the nervous system to a high degree and "prime" those target muscles for subsequent movements. Pairing high velocity or high load squats with plyometric jumps captures that phenomenon to increase acute power expression (in plain terms, it makes you faster and more powerful in the short term and increases potential for even more future improvements).
This study from the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research illustrates the "priming" phenomenon. The research confirmed a marked improvement in vertical jump (as much as 10% in some cases) right after heavy dynamic barbell squats, the very same setup as we have in the SquatStrong program.
There you have it. Squat heavy, squat fast, and jump. Higher power awaits.