I wrote in an earlier post about whether or not basketball makes you grow taller. I didn’t come to a conclusion, at least one that is supported by science, but the hypothesis was that all that jumping can benefit your hormones that are responsible for growing taller.
When you jump up in the air, your body (mainly your spine and legs) decompresses, separating the bones. When you land back on the ground, your joints and vertebrae crunch back together. Some hypothesize that this stimulates blood flow and also engages the nerves connected to your pituitary gland and thyroid. The result is more activity in the IGF-1 hormone, which is responsible for making you taller.
What Sports Are Best to Make You Taller?
Again, I’ll reiterate that there is not enough data (nor any studies conducted) on whether the above hypotheses are true, but lets for the sake of argument say that it is valid. What other sports would work best to help you gain height? Obviously, sports that involve lots of jumping! Here is a list of the top candidates in that regard.
Whether you are on the offensive side of the ball going up for a catch.
On the defensive side trying to knock a pass down or go for an interception, or a special teamer trying to get up to block a punt, there is plenty of jumping in football.
It also incorporates total body activity to engage in all the athleticism that this sport involves, stimulating all your muscles and promoting blood flow all around the body.
So this isn’t as much a sport as it is an activity (though you can occasionally find jump rope competitions on ESPN when there’s no other live programming for them to show).
But what other sport has more jumping than one that has jump in its name?
All of that jumping up and down helps preset the growth plates in your spine, knees, and ankles, causing them to stretch and grow under the duress. It also is quite a workout and leads to increased blood flow throughout the body.
Unless you’re a Spanish soccer team playing tiki-taka with short passes on the ground all over the pitch, there’s going to be plenty of jumping in this sport.
Every time the ball is sent into the penalty box, you’re jumping up to head in a cross.
Every time there’s a goal kick, you’re jumping up to win that 50-50 over the other team. Like football mentioned above, it is also a total body workout (and for 90 minutes!) that engages all the muscles and gets the blood flowing.
Unless you’re a child who can’t get up over the net, you’re playing at a competitive level that involves a lot of jumping up to spike the ball down on your opponent’s side. For all the reasons mentioned above with the other sports, this jumping may lead to growth in height due to growth plates, pituitary gland activity, and more blood flow.