Why Plyometrics are Awesome! – Ep 37 – Made Fit TV

February 25th, 2009 | 7 Comments | Email This Post Email This Post |

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Ever have the urge to just jump as high as you can to touch the basketball rim?  Or try to grab the chin-up bar on your own because you didn’t have someone there to hoist you up?  Well, you don’t need those special Jimmy shoes to improve your vertical leap (random Seinfeld reference).  Plyometric movements are perfect for not only increasing you jump and power, but for optimizing your overall performance and strength.

Plyometrics, which means “to increase,” involve explosive jumping movements.   These types of exercises are unique in that they work the muscle is more ways than one.  They require your muscle to quickly contract (concentric muscle movement) and then quickly lengthen (eccentric muscle movement).

Training muscles in both their shortened and lengthened states conditions them to have more controlled power in reactive movements, while preventing injury at the same time.  However, it is strongly recommended that only conditioned athletes and gym-goers execute this form of training.  Beginners and fair-weather exercisers could experience injuries to the muscles, tendons, or even bones if performing plyometrics improperly.

So, to learn how and when to incorporate Plyometric exercise into your fitness program, check out this week’s Made Fit TV podcast.  I show you the basic movement of a squat jump, while kicking it up a notch with other variations for an even bigger challenge!

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  • http://www.madefittv.com Jenny DiDonato

    Anyone hurting from these yet??? LOL!

  • http://www.twitter.com/chrissonjeow Chris

    Yes! I’m so glad I started doing these. Getting a higher vert is so important for volleyball and basketball. There’s nothing like being so high over the net that you don’t have to worry about hitting into it. Rebounding is much easier too.

    I do the jumps on the 3 ft box. I can almost clear it now.

    Still can’t dunk but if 5′ 9″ Nate Robinson can do it…We’ll, ok, maybe I’ll settle for a really close layup.

  • charlie

    Brilliant – you have inspired me to do these 2m,I haven’t done them for a while.. also very good explanation of muscles and movement etc..Good work jenny :0)

  • Ellen

    How often should you do plyometrics? Should I do these every other day? If I do plyometrics 1 day, can I do lower leg weight training like deadlifts the next day or should I do them together then rest the next day? Thanks!

  • http://www.madefittv.com JennyDidonato

    Ellen, you’re so brave to try them : ) I would recommend that you rest up your legs after doing an entire leg workout in one day. If you work on them with isolation movements one day and then plyo’s the next, they may not recover as well. So, allow at least two days rest. Thanks!

    • stacey

      how do you do them on a aerobic step i know how to do them from the ground can you help me out thanks so much

      • http://www.MadeFitTV.com Jenny DiDonato

        Doing plyos on an elevated surface like a step requires you to first master them on the ground. Practice jumping as high as you can with good form, controlled landing, and power. Do this for about a week, or until you're ready to up the challenge ; ) Then, try jumping up on an elevation that is high enough to pose a challenge for you, yet still low enough for you to clear. Does this help? I hope so!