Dunk Calculator – How High Do You Need to Jump to Dunk?

The wrong idea that dunking is an ability limited only to the tallest people is a bee in the bonnet of most basketball players. They think in this way because the average height of NBA players is 6’7″ ( 6 feet 7 Inches ). However, being taller is a considerable advantage, but this supposition is entirely wrong. So, let us see that how the dunk calculator works.

Dunk Calculator

Dunk Calculator – Check Your Ability to Dunk a Basketball

A player’s ability to dunk depends upon two factors and these factors will determine how high you need to jump to dunk a basketball.

  1. Standing reach
  2. Vertical Jump

1. Standing Reach – How to Measure it?

Standing Reach is the measurement of how high you can reach by raising your arms while standing flat-footed on the ground. To measure it, stand flat-footed on the floor and try to upraise your arms as high as possible. Generally, people are aware of their heights, but they are less acquainted with their standing reach. But when it comes to dunking, standing reach is the significant factor. Being tall increases your standing reach, but your arm length also contributes.

A study from NBA shows that a player of 6’2″ height has the same standing reach as 6’9″ player. A person’s standing reach is 1.33 times greater than his height. A glance at NBA Draft Combine statistics from 2015 to 2018 showed how the standing reach to height ratio varied among the players. In other words, Basketball appears to favor players with longer arms. Being tall is primary but, a wingspan is also a big part of standing reach.


2. Vertical Jump – How to Measure it?

The other factor that contributes to your dunking ability is your vertical jump. One of the simplest methods to measure the vertical jump is:

  1.  Rub chalk on your fingertips.
  2.  Stand beside a wall(do not face the wall)
  3.  With flat-footed on the floor, try to reach as high as you can and mark the point on the wall with your fingertips.
  4.  Now jump as high as you can and mark the point on the wall with your fingertips.
  5.  The difference between the two points is your vertical jump.

This factor is more significant because your height and standing reach are genetically determined, but you can train yourself to jump high. It has been estimated that the more you bend your knees, the less force will be required to jump high. It is better to train the legs to jump high.

Besides vertical jump, hang time also contributes to dunking ability. Hangtime is the length of time a leaping athlete is in the air. If you have a vertical jump of 40 inches, you will spend more than 50% of the time above 29 inches.

How the dunk calculator works?

A Dunk calculator is a helpful tool for players who want to know how much they have to jump to dunk a basketball. If you have to calculate, google a dunk calculator and enter your data. You will have an idea about how high you have to jump.

Step 1:  Enter your height.

Step 2:  Enter your standing reach. It is easy to measure. If you do not know, you can measure it the standing reach.

Step 3:  Enter your vertical jump. If you don’t know, you can calculate it by using the above procedure.

Step 4:  Enter your weight and then calculate.


Height of Basketball hoop

A basketball hoop is usually 10 feet high. All basketball leagues and championships use hoops of the same height. So, it is advisable to adjust the hoop at the same length before practicing dunking drills.

Here is an analysis of the players of different heights of their dunking ability:

1. Height from 5’7″ – 5’9”

Although it is not impossible, dunking for the players of this height range is difficult. Suppose you are 5’8″ and have an average arm length, then you will have a standing reach of around 7 foot 6 inches. It means that you will have to jump 30 inches to touch the rim.

Moreover, to dunk, you will have to jump higher than 30 inches. A vertical jump of 30 inches is quite impressive in professional sports and requires a lot of training. In NBA, there are a lot of players who can produce a 40 plus inches vertical jump. And it is so hard to attain this level of physicality. That’s the reason they are known for their impressive dunks. The most typical example is Nate Robinson.

2. Height from 5’10” – 6’0″

If you are 6’0″, dunking becomes a lot easier for you than 5’8″, but still, it is challenging. A person of 6’0″ has longer arms which will add to the standing reach. However, with some training, you will be able to dunk quite simply. You will have to jump 24 inches to touch the rim.

Moreover, to douse a full-sized basketball, you will have to jump almost 30 inches. In this height range, only a few players would be able to dunk a basketball quite comfortably. Just because of their will have longer arms. Otherwise, the rest of all will have to do tough training.

3. Height from 6’1″ – 6’3″

At this height, you will be able to dunk a basketball without serious effort, but if you have training. Although dunking is easier for you if you are tall, training polishes your dunking ability. If you are well at jumping, dunking will not be a challenge for you and, you can easily pace through the game.

4. Height from 6’4″ and more

If you are of this height, dunking will be easier for you. You will have to be physically fit. Now, at this height, the comparison depends upon body weight and strength. It will be easier for you to dunk than an over-weighed person. As height increases, the robustness to weight ratio decreases. Smaller bodies are typically more athletic than larger bodies. (Human Body Size and the Laws of Scaling, Thomas Samaras 2006).


Video Tutorial on How to Jump Higher and Dunk



Despite all these things, being taller helps you in dunking. Although, exercise and proper training make you adept at dunking. Height is the factor that is under genetics but, the vertical jump is the factor that can contribute to your dunking ability. It is your training and physical fitness that make you jump as high as you can.

You can take an example of an NBA player Tyrone Curtis who is the shortest player on the NBA team ever. He became famous for his performances. He was 5’3″. Height is an advantage but, you just need to improve your jump to dunk.

Michael Heywood

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