Tips: How To Grow Taller

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I have received a handful — not a lot, but a handful — of messages from young players who ask me variations of the following questions:

“How can I get taller?
How tall were you when you were ___ (fill in age)?
How tall are your parents?”

You can’t do anything to get taller. You may grow to be taller than you presently are, you may not. But there is nothing you can do to make yourself grow taller than your genetic code determined for you before you were even born.

I’m 6’4″ (193cm) now. I have no accurate recollection of my height changes over the years (or estimates either, so please don’t ask me). And unless you’re my son or daughter, there is no relation between my pubescent growth and yours. If I was 5’5″ at age 16 and shot up to 7’1″ by 18, it has no bearing on how you will grow. Hell, even if you were my child (my father is under 6 feet tall) there are no guarantees.

There are a few things in your basketball development that you will never have control over: your race (Black/ Asian/ White/ European etc); your physical proportions (height, size of your hands, length of your arms, etc); and the weather. Almost everything else, you have at least some degree of control over.

As I’ve said before: focus your energy on what you can control, like practicing, listening to coaches, giving your best effort. The things you can’t control are going to happen the way they’ll happen anyway, whether you pay attention to them or not. As mortal human beings, we have only so much time and energy to do what we want, and your time can end at any moment. So do what you can do, and don’t be concerned with what you cannot affect.


  1. Hey Dre im 13 and im already 6ft4 I cant believe how tall I am because my mom is 5ft6 and my dad is 5ft10. I cant dunk yet but i can touch rim. How can I increase my vertical jump?

  2. Hey, I’m 14 years old guy & My height is 5.6 ft. & my dad is 5.9 ft. & my mom is between 5.6 & 5.7 ft. How long would I longer???

  3. I am 5’5 or 5’6 and about 135 and i want to know how to use my size when I’m playing basketball

    • You need to practice and play more to improve your skills and gain experience. That’s how you learn in this game.

  4. Yo Dre i am a 15 year old boy and i can jump high for a 5’5 guy because i can touch rim and sometimes grab rim. But my knee’s hurt a lot when i play and my shin and i have shin splints and my heels hurt all the time. I am an out door baller most of the times i play basket ball. Do you have any advice for me to not have pain or any advice.

    • Mo, You can see our Jumper’s Knee program ( though it sounds like there may be more to it than that. I would suggest seeing a doctor or trainer/physical therapist who can give a professional opinion on your pain. I’m not qualified to diagnose you.

  5. I’m 13 (girl) and I’m 5.2 and I want to be taller both my parents are short and I want to be taller since I want to be basketball player in future but I want to know how u grow taller and to play Basketball ball u hve to b tall

    • You cannot make yourself grow taller. Focus on what you can control: your skills, your effort & attitude.

  6. I am 14 and 5’8 I want to get taller because I want to play bball

  7. Dre: I rec’d the Ball Handling DVD and it is an excellent workout. What ball do recommend for outside? Because your workout is serious I need a ball that takes a pounding.

  8. Hi Dre,
    Your Stuff has really motivated me over the past couple of years, im in hs now, and i worked my way from touching rim to dunking with two hands. I was just wondering in pro ball do they list you with your height in bball shoes or without?

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