Jacob from the Jump Manual received a post on his facebook wall asking if it is possible to increase your hang time. The video below has his answer, or just take a look at the notes for the short version.
“The only way you’re going to increase your hang time is if you increase how how high you jump”.
If you pull your legs up as you jump you could increase your hang time slightly, but there is no way you can ‘float’ higher in the air and it’s actually an illusion that makes it appear that some can float in the air.
Jacob thinks the reason people appear to be floating is that they cover more distance in their jump and gives the example of the difference between someone jumping from a standing position and someone running at full speed. This allows for more hang time.
The analogy of a speeding bullet is used. A bullet falls at the same speed whether dropped from your hands or after being fired from a gun, but the speeding bullet travels a far greater distance so has the illusion of greater ‘hang time’.
If you want to increase your hang time you have to increase how high you can jump – and if you want to jump higher you need to be working on the prime movers – glutes, hamstrings, quads, calf, core, form and greater force development.