Jumpsoles and other types of strength shoes are popular basketball training aids for players wanting to learn how to jump higher. They've been around for a long time and have helped many athletes increase their vertical jump.
You can find lots of testimonials from people who have used Jump soles with great success, but just like with anything else, you'll find plenty of critics out there as well.
If you are unfamiliar with Jump soles, here is what they look like.
They are basically a platform that straps right onto the front of your regular workout shoes. Because the back half of your foot has no support, your calves are forced to do most of the work when it comes to moving around. The idea is that as your calves maintain this raised position, your calf muscles will get stronger.
Here's a quick introductory video about Jumpsoles
When it comes to building the leg strength and explosive power needed to jump high, plyometric exercises are really beneficial. These strength building exercises focus on bounding, hopping, and jumping. These exercises alone are excellent for improving jumping ability, but when combined with additional training aids like Jump soles, your results will be multiplied.
Jump soles have an optional feature called "proprioceptors" that can further enhance your jumping workout. The proprioceptors have been highly recommended by some well-respected strength coaches and trainers.
Basically, they are knobs you attach to the bottom of the shoes to provide an unstable base. While it may appear that jumping around on knobs attached to your soles is an "accident waiting to happen", it is believed that the instability they cause really benefits your body by forcing it to recruit more muscles for joint stabilization in addition to strengthening your ankles and feet which is important for injury prevention.
SKLZ also has basketball training aids that will help you learn how to jump higher. They have a product called Hopz, which is a vertical leap resistance trainer. It uses resistance bands that attach to the ankles and waist to develop explosive leg drive, power, and lower body strength to maximize vertical jumping ability.
Looking for more resistance band exercises?