Physical activity will not be superfluous for any modern person. At a time when all the complex work is done by machines and equipment, we train muscles only in the gym, but not everyone goes there. Plyometric exercises have a number of undeniable benefits:
- They are performed with their own body weight and require a minimum amount of equipment;
- Suitable for people of all fitness levels;
- They activate the main large muscles of the body, increase strength and dexterity, pump coordination and cardio system;
- They take little time, can be performed at home, on the street, in the office.
What are the benefits and features of plyometrics before regular workouts, as well as what exercises should be included in your program and how to train – read on.
What is “plyometrics”
From the point of view of physics, “plyometrics” is a jump from a height that shakes the body due to the speed and sharpness of movement. In physical culture, plyometric exercises are exercises for the development of explosive strength, which are performed at speed with minimal periods of rest between sets.
Plyometric sessions were designed to prepare athletes to compete in the Olympics. Today, workouts are popular among professional athletes and those who work out to improve their own health. Often these exercises are included in HIIT and CrossFit.
The benefits of plyometric exercises
In addition to the ease of implementation and the minimum of sports equipment required for the training process, plyometrics has a number of other positive characteristics:
- Ideal for burning fat. Exercises are performed with little or no rest, with maximum application of strength and speed, which allows you to lose more calories than any other activity.
- Tones up the entire body as a whole. The complex includes tasks for the upper and lower body, the development of the body and secondary muscles, which are little used in everyday life.
- Develops endurance and performance. Aerobic training will also be beneficial in everyday life – it will become easier to bring groceries from the store, go up to the floor without an elevator, and do work at home or in the office.
- Improves the appearance of the lower body. Most of the exercise involves jumping, so the appearance of the legs and buttocks will change faster than the shape of the arms and waist.
- Creates an anabolic effect without sports pharmaceuticals. Plyometrics recruits fast muscle fibers, which are characterized by accelerated recovery. Muscles grow faster, become smooth and elastic.
- Improves metabolism. Rapid intense loads should not be carried out before bedtime, since the metabolic effect of the exercise works for another 4-5 hours. All this time, the body burns more calories than usual, even in a calm state.
- Develops endurance and coordination. A quick change of position trains the ability to adapt to a change of position, which will help you become more agile, not fall on the ice, and it is easier to endure asymmetrical loads.
Plyometric exercises have practically no drawbacks. In order to completely avoid the negative consequences, it is recommended to move on to classes gradually, not to overload the body at the very first workout, to start with the simplest and easiest exercises.
Cons and contraindications for plyometric loads
From an athletic point of view, high-intensity training has no downsides. This kind of load is not very popular with weightlifters and those who are involved in bodybuilding. On the medical side, there are a number of contraindications. Intensive CrossFit is not recommended for people:
- with problems of the respiratory system;
- with diseases of the joints or the musculoskeletal system;
- with brittle bones or dystrophy, which can lead to injury and fracture;
- with a lot of excess weight.
Also, plyometrics are contraindicated for those who have not been involved in any sports before. It is best to start with your regular workouts and gradually move on to high-intensity workouts.
Plyometric Exercises – TOP 10 Effective Exercises
We’ve collected the most effective exercises for burning calories and getting your body in shape quickly. You can do from all or choose from the list those that you like best. The main thing is to train regularly and consciously, otherwise you will not be able to achieve the desired result.
The movement is aimed at working out the hips, calf muscles, allows you to develop dexterity and coordination.
The task for the full study of the body and the development of the cardiac system. Legs, arms work, the muscles of the core and abdomen are slightly involved. Breathe regularly, do not hunch your back.
The movement pumps the leg muscles. If your legs are wider than your shoulders, and your toes are turned out, in addition to the quadriceps, you will work the inner thighs. Additionally, there is a load on the respiratory system.
The exercise is performed in a lying position, trains the muscles of the legs and the press. The arms, back deltoid muscles and back are slightly loaded.
The hardest and most effective exercise on the list. It pumps the muscles of the arms through push-ups, legs – through jumping, the body – through jumping out and standing in a prone position.
Jumping with rotation
The movement is also aimed at working out the legs and developing the respiratory system. It accelerates metabolism well. There are many variations of the exercise, below is the technique for beginners.
Running with a high hip lift will help improve the shape of your legs and pump your hips:
Simple endurance movement and the development of aerobic function of the body:
Jumping in the bar
The exercise will load the arms and shoulders, work the muscles of the press and back, and help to make beautiful legs:
Running with legs forward will work out the respiratory function well, help accelerate metabolism, load all the muscles of the legs and the press:
The main advice applies to all sports: move to the new discipline gradually. If you doubt the appropriateness of exercises and their safety specifically for your body, consult a therapist or your doctor.
- Each workout starts with a warm-up. Warming up the body helps to avoid injury and prepares the body for increased stress.
- Stretch after finishing your workout. This is necessary in order to avoid muscle hypertrophy, make them elastic and give the body beautiful shapes.
- The duration of one lesson for beginners is 15-20 minutes, for professionals and advanced athletes – no more than 60 minutes. Too long and heavy loads can lead to the opposite effect – weakness, dizziness, nausea.
- In the process of training, it is important to pay attention not only to the speed of the exercises, but also to the technique. Incorrect tilt or poor-quality jump will lead to a redistribution of the load and become useless in terms of muscle pumping.
- For the development of physical fitness, it is enough to carry out 2-3 workouts per week. The minimum rest period between classes is 48 hours.
- All workouts are done on an empty stomach, at least 2-2.5 hours after eating. If you are overweight, pre-train on a treadmill or practice a diet. Otherwise, the lesson will seem too difficult and not useful.
Exercise on a hard surface, be sure to have quality sneakers with non-slip soles. Weights and sports equipment to complicate the exercises will only be needed by advanced athletes, but in most cases you can do without them.
We make a training plan, an example of a training plan
Drawing up a lesson plan is a purely individual process. First of all, you should try out each exercise and see how it suits you. The workout can be configured as an interval circular or tabata workout. In both cases, a long period of activity is followed by a short rest. Let’s look at two examples.
Basic principles of Tabata lessons:
- Each exercise is given 4 minutes. For the allotted time, you need to have time to do 8 sets of 30 seconds each.
- Of the 30 seconds, 20 are allocated for the exercise, 10 for rest.
- The average duration of the active phase of the workout (without warm-up and stretching) will be 45 minutes.
- During this time, you need to have time to do 8 exercises. After each exercise, you need to rest for 1.5-2 minutes.
For example, you can take a combination of moves such as: Skater, Rotational Jumping, Climber, Burpee, Jumping Jack, Knee Raises, Skater, and Jogging. We start the workout with a warm-up and move on to the first “Skater” movement. We perform it for 20 seconds, rest for 10 seconds, and so on for 8 approaches. After the 8th approach, a rest of 90-120 seconds is made and the second exercise “jumping with rotation” begins.
A list of movements can be compiled on your own for training, you must have a stopwatch. For convenience, you can download a special “Tabata” application from Google Play or AppStore.
Circular plyometric exercise program
It is built according to the same principle of alternating load and short rest.
- Choose 4-8 exercises that are suitable for you (this is the optimal amount for the duration and quality of the load).
- In the HIIT roundabout, the movements are performed one after the other. For example, you took the Skater, Jumping Jack, Mountaineer, and Speed Skater exercises.
- Do the Skater move for 20 seconds, rest for 10 seconds, Jumping Jack for 20 seconds, rest for 10 seconds, and so on until the exercises on the list are over.
- When you have done all 4-8 exercises in one set, this will be the first round of the workout. The total number of laps depends on the individual skill level. Usually 3-5 circles are done.
Rest between circles is 1.5-2 minutes, it is allowed to increase the time for a break if the workout is hard.