# Leg Plyometrics

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```					                             Leg Plyometrics
Bounds

How to perform the drill

   Jog into the start of the exercise
   Push off with your left foot and bring the leg forward, with the knee bent and
the thigh parallel to the ground
   At the same time, reach forward with your right arm. As the left leg comes
through, the right leg extends back and remains extended for the duration of
the push-off
   Hold this extended stride for a brief time, then land on your left foot
   The right leg then drives through to a forward bent position, the left arm
reaches forward, and the left leg extends backward
   Make each stride long, and try to cover as much distance as possible
   You should land on the sole of the foot (flat footed), allowing energy to be
stored by the elastic components of the leg muscles, and immediately take off
again
   Keep the foot touch down time to the shortest time possible

How much

   One to three sets over 30 to 40 metres
   Allow a full recovery between each set
   Quality of bounding is far more important than quantity.

Hurdle Hopping
How to perform the drill

   Jump forward over the barriers with your feet together
   The movement should come from your hips and knees
   keep your body vertical and straight, and do not let your knees move apart or
to either side
   Tuck both knees to your chest
   Use a double arm swing to maintain balance and gain height
   You should land on the balls of the feet, allowing energy to be stored by the
elastic components of the leg muscles, and immediately take off again
   Keep the feet touch down time between hurdles to the shortest time possible

How much

   One to three sets using 6 to 8 hurdles
   Allow a full recovery between each set
   Hurdles should set up in a row, spaced according to ability
   The height of the hurdles should be in the region of 12 and 36 inches high
   Quality of hurdle hopping is far more important than quantity

Single Leg Hopping

How to perform the drill

   Stand on one leg
   Push off with the leg you are standing on and jump forward, landing on the
same leg
   Use a forceful swing of the opposite leg to increase the length of the jump but
aim primarily for height off each jump
   You should land on the ball of the foot, allowing energy to be stored by the
elastic components of the leg muscles, and immediately take off again
   Keep the foot touch down time to the shortest time possible
   Try to keep your body vertical and straight
   Perform this drill on both legs
   Beginners will use a straighter leg action where as advanced athletes should
try to pull the heel toward the buttocks during the jump

How much

   One to three sets over 30 to 40 metres
   Allow a full recovery between each set
   Quality of bounding is far more important than quantity

Box Jumps

How to perform the drill

   Assume a deep squat position with your feet shoulder width apart at the end of
the row of boxes
   Jump onto the box, landing softly in a squat position on the balls of the feet
   Maintaining the squat position, jump off the box onto the ground, landing
softly in a squat position on the balls of the feet
   Jump onto the next box and so on
   Keep the feet touch down time on the ground to the shortest time possible

How much

   One to three sets using 6 to 8 boxes
   Allow a full recovery between each set
   The height of the box should be in the region of 30-80 cm
   Quality of box jumping is far more important than quantity

Depth Jumps

How to perform the drill

   Stand on the box with your toes close to the front edge
   Step from the box and drop to land on then balls of both feet
   Try to anticipate the landing and spring up as quickly as you can
   Keep the feet touch down time on the ground to the shortest time possible
How much

   One to three sets using 6 to 8 boxes
   Allow a full recovery between each set
   The height of the box should be in the region of 30-80 cm
   Quality of depth jumping is far more important than quantity

Tuck Jumps

How to perform the drill

   Begin in a standing position
   Jump up, grabbing both knees as they come up your chest
   Return to the starting position landing on the balls of the feet
   Try to anticipate the landing and spring up as quickly as you can
   Keep the feet touch down time on the ground to the shortest time possible

How much

   1 to 3 sets
   Allow a full recovery between each set
   5 to 10 repetitions/set
   Quality of Tuck Jumps is far more important than quantity

Two legged Hops or Bunny Hops

How to perform the drill

   Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart
   Lower into a squat position and jump as far forward as possible
   Land on the balls of both feet
   Try to keep your body vertical and straight, and do not let your knees move
apart or to either side
   Try to anticipate the landing and spring up as quickly as you can
   Keep the feet touch down time on the ground to the shortest time possible
   Use quick double-arm swings and keep landings short

How much

   1 to 3 sets
   Allow a full recovery between each set
   5 to 10 repetitions/set
   Quality of Bunny Hops is far more important than quantity

Warm up

A thorough warm-up is essential prior to plyometric training. Attention should be
given to jogging, stretching (static and ballistic), striding and general mobility
especially about the joints involved in the planned plyometric session. A warm-down

Where to do it and what to wear

For bounding exercises use surfaces such as grass or resilient surfaces. Avoid cement
floors because there is no cushioning. Choose well-cushioned shoes that are stable
and can absorb some of the inevitable impact. All athletes should undergo general
orthopaedic screening before engaging in plyometric training. Particular attention
should be given to structural or postural problems that are likely to predispose the
athlete to injury.

Young athletes

Some authors suggest that moderate jumps can be included in the athletic training of
very young children (Lohman, 1989). However, great care needs to be exerted when
prescribing any training procedures for preadolescent children. Because of the
great forces exerted during intensive depth jumps should be avoided (Smith, 1975).
These Questions and Answers are from a Weight-Training Website, but
are just as relevant for Trampolining.

Q: What are plyometrics?

A: Plyometrics are any exercise where the muscle is contracted eccentricly then
immediately, concentricly. In plain English, the muscle is stretched (i.e. loaded)
before it is contracted. A good example is push-ups with a clap in-between each push-
up. Your muscle (pectorals in this case) is elongated and loaded by the downward
force of your body, then immediately you must contract the muscle to push yourself
back up.

Q: Why do I care?

A: Because plyometrics is one of the best ways if not the best way to improve power.
To justify this answer lets first look at what is power. Power is similar to strength
except you are adding the time factor. Therefore the relation of strength and speed is
what we are talking about when we talk about power. A person who can perform a
specific resistance movement, such as jumping, bench press etc., the fastest would be
said to have more power in that movement. So what we are looking at is not just the
contraction of the muscle, but how fast will it contract. It has been shown that a
muscle will contract the fastest when it has been loaded. This is why you should be
able to jump higher if you crouch down then immediately jump up than if you started
in the crouch. So if this is the best way to perform a powerful movement lets practice
these movements. This practic e is called plyometrics and has been shown in study
after study to decrease the time it takes for the muscles to contract, resulting in more
power.

Q: What are good plyometric exercises for increasing vertical jump?

A: There are an infinite number of plyometric exercises to increase vertical leap but
here are a few good ones:
Two foot ankle hop (low intensity)
keeping your feet together and remaining in one place hop up and down using
only your ankles and calves. Concentrate on getting as high as you can and
exploding off the ground as soon as you land.
Rim Jumps (medium intensity)
Stand under a basketball rim. Jump up touching the rim (or net or whatever)
with alternate hands. Concentrate on getting as high as you can and exploding
off the ground as soon as you land.
Box to Box jumps (high intensity)
Place two boxes that will support your weight about 3 feet apart. Standing on
one box step (NOT JUMP) off to the ground and immediately jump back up to
the other box. Turn around and repeat. Obviously the difficulty of this exercise
is increased as the height of the boxes are increased. Once again concentrate
on getting as high as you can and exploding off the ground as soon as you land
(notice a pat tern here?)
In all the above exercises you are using your body weight and gravity to load the
muscle before contraction. The forces you generate are much larger than could be
safely accomplished using conventional resistance (read weights) exercises. It is true
these forces only exist for a brief amount of time, but they still stress the muscle
which is the point.

Also these exercises can be combined. For example try jumping off a box before
jumping up to the rim.

Q: What are good plyometric exercises for increasing speed

A: While all of the above exercises will also increase your speed (leg speed), these are
many others that just focus more on movement. Here are some examples

Zig Zags ( medium intensity)
run an elastic cord about a foot off the ground. While on one foot hop back
and forth over the rope. Repeat with other foot.
Side to side ankle hops
Same as regular ankle hops (see above) but instead of remaining in place you
jump 2 to 3 feet side to side.
Sprints
Yes sprints are plyometrics since the force of your body coming down loads
the hamstring.

Random thoughts

While plyometric will increase your vertical jump, form has quite a bit to do also. Try
to crouch to a point where your knees reach a 90 degree angle. A good arm swing will
easily add inches. By throwing your arms up as you jump you are decreasing the
weight that you have to push off the ground and the inertia of your arms going up will
help pull the rest of your body up. Also the faster you are moving before the jump, the
higher you can jump. You can transfer this horizontal speed to vertical speed with the
proper form. This is why high jumpers get a running start to jump much higher than
they could standing still.

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 views: 19 posted: 6/22/2012 language: English pages: 7
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