Q: I've read that single-leg hyperextensions are a superior exercise for one-leg jumping ability, do you have any experience with this exercise?
A: I have enough experience with it to rank it as about the 6th or 7th best assistance posterior chain exercise I can think of. Calling single leg hyperextentions a "core" exercise is like recommending leg extensions as the money exercise for a competitive bodybuilder's quads instead of squat variations. Deadlifts, Romanian deadlifts, good mornings, natural glute ham raises, reverse hyperextensions, and pull throughs are all much more efficient exercises.
Q: My question pertains to ratios between concentric only jump vs. eccentric-isometric-concentric jump heights (Jumping from a squatted posiiton to eliminate the stretch-reflex component vs. a "standard" counter movement jump). What ratio percentage do you switch the training focus from gaining absolute strength to more elastic strength and plyometric type work?
A: Honestly on that test the results will vary so much depending on individual body structures, leverages, etc. that I no longer feel it's even worth worrying about. If you were going to analyze it however I would consider a 10%-30% difference between the jumps to be a decent range...any larger then that and the individual is either very plyometric dominaint or has long legs/tendons like a kangaroo and needs to work on strength. Any smaller and the individual is either very strength dominant or has short thick legs and short tendons. A simple "bounce jump' test is much better IMO. Anybody should be able to get up higher bouncing off the ground from an 18 inch drop then they can from a standstill jump. Or you can just compare a running jump to a standing jump - running jump should always be at least 20% higher IMO.
Q: In your jump bible it says that strength training can be bad if it
takes more than 4 seconds to complete a lift, does that mean that I shouldn't
increase a weight unless i can perform all reps in a set each under 4 seconds?
A: No, that's 4 seconds on a maximum effort single rep not 4 seconds for an entire set.
Q: I was wondering if you could explain the difference in your opinions between your response in the 3-27-04 q&a relating to dietary composition vs. the 1-02-06 q&a addressing the same thing. In the 2004 response you seemed to be in favor of the importance of meal composition and timing stating that a "calorie is not just a calorie," while in the 2006 q&a you stated that it was overrated. Did your views on the issue change since then or were you just trying to put things in perspective?
A: I was just trying to put things into perspective. Yes, composition and timing of meals and all that does offer some significance but people tend to give it WAY more credit then it deserves and they get to a point where they're overanalyzing every single aspect of nutrition when the more important things are the activity itself and calories needed, burned etc. Also whenever you control food choices, meal compositions,timing, etc. you tend to automatically fall into an intake range that correlates with yoru chosen goals. For example if I tell you not to mix carbs and fats with your protein meals then you will automatically tend to lower your daily caloric and carbohydrate intake while maintaining or even increasing your protein. Thus the calories you'd normally eat will be reduced and you'll drop fat. Also if I tell you that you can eat apples and vegetables but no sugars I do that realizing that they will all be broken down into carbohydrates which behave the same in the body. Yet, just due to the fact that you're having to fill yourself up on apples and veggies means you will take in less carbohydrates overall and have better appetite control. If you tell a typical person to eat whatever carbs they want what do you think the first ones will be that they eat?? Probably the ones that they can sit and get a whole days worth of carbohydrate calories in one sitting like a box of sugar sweetened cereal or a 2 liter of coke. If they have to eat a box of oatmeal or 5 bags of veggies to get those same carbs it's a lot more difficult for them to screw up their diet. If I tell you to "just eat a lot" that's not gonna be as effective as telling you to set an alarm every 3 hours and consume a protein meal.
So that's the bsic gist of it. Like I said, set your protein intake and keep that constant and adjust your fats and carbs up or down to lose or gain weight. How you go about doing that is just details really. If you're the kind've guy who can eat McDonalds hamburgers and bowls of sugar cereal and pop tarts while still controlling your caloric intake and getting your protein in then have at it. :)
Q: Did you see the NBA dunk contest, that Nate Robinson is amazing, he says his jump is "god given" but he clearly works out. What is making him jump so high, is he really strong in the legs,he looks like a power jumper he is not a one legged jumper at all and his achilles tendon is not that long, so how does he jump so high?
Have you ever looked at the muscularity and athletic ability of one of these guys pictured? How do they get so powerful and athletic? The answer to that question is the answer to your question. Some people are just born with it. :)