Looking to stay fit and burn calories without trying out explosive activities like running? Then you should try plyometric exercises. You can get creative while trying out plyos for an awesome workout for your entire body in less than 30 minutes!
What are plyometrics?
If you want to improve your fitness skills, then you should give plyometrics a shot. These high-intensity regimes can increase your heart rate and allow you to burn calories while strengthening bones. For best results, do these exercises twice or thrice a week. Before you begin, warm up for 30 seconds of marching in one place, 30 seconds of jogging in the same position, and a few squats.
Here are few plyometric exercises targeted for your whole body:
1. Plyo Pushups
You can start with standard pushups, but take off from the bottom position until your hands fully leave the base level.
- Attempt to get maximum height from the ground.
- Cushion your landing.
- Repeat for 15 seconds.
Note: Do not clasp your hands during each rep. This reduces your chances of an injury to your fingers and wrists.
2. Box Jumps
For box jump workout, you will need a box that is knee height, high enough to place your knees for soft landing.
- Place a sturdy box in front of you. Take a trial step-up first as a part of safety measure.
- Lower your body in squat position, while placing your knees behind your toes and reaching out for your arms low and back.
- Swing your arms forward and bring your body to a normal position, while jumping on top of the box. Once you have landed, lower your body for another squat, while holding your hands forward for balance.
- Step down slowly back to the ground by placing one foot at a time, back to the starting position to complete one rep.
Note: Be sure to step off the box, and not jump down while trying plyo box exercises.
Bounding can be great for dynamic coordination.
- Start jogging.
- Push your left foot as it lands.
- Bring your right knee to 90 degrees and right thigh parallel to the ground.
- Reach forward using both arms.
- Repeat by pushing off right foot.
Note: Cover as much distance with each stride.
4. 2-leg Bound
Maintain a swift contact time to the base and a smooth transition between bounds while performing 2-leg bound.
- Start with squat position.
- Use your arms to propel yourself.
- Jump as high as possible.
- Land back in squat position. Make sure to cushion your landing.
- Take off on your next jump instantly.
- Repeat ten jumps.
Note: Maintain short intervals for each rep.
5. Single-leg Bounding
Single-leg bound is a calisthenics exercise that primarily targets quads, calves, glutes, and hamstrings. There are several single-leg bound variations that might require use of single-leg bound equipments or no equipments at all. Learning single-leg bounding is simple with step-by-step instructions:
- Balance on your right leg.
- Jump forward and upwards.
- Land on the same foot and jump again.
- Repeat this set and switch legs.
Note: Throw your arms upward and jump to propel yourself forward. Stay balanced. Land softly and quickly, as you can.
6. Depth Jumps
Depth jumps are a form of plyometrics exercise, which can develop muscle power. In this form of exercise regime, you can practice box and depth jumps to strengthen legs and improve sprint performance. Both these regimes require the use of a box or a bench. Box jumps involve jumping onto a box, while depth jumps require jumping down from one.
- Stand on a knee-high box keeping feet-shoulder width apart, and toes near the box edge.
- Step off.
- Land your feet in a full squat position.
Note: Try not to spend too much time on the floor and jump high as possible. Use arms as much as possible to achieve the most height from your jump.
7. Traveling Push-ups
Traveling push-ups are great for building strength in your chest, shoulders, and triceps. For this, you will need a low platform, not higher than six feet. Start with push-ups. Explode over to the opposite side while you press. Keep one hand on the box and other on flat ground. Continue back and forth, until reps slow down.
- Start by keeping shoulders over your elbows and wrist in a straight line.
- Keep your body tight, feet flex, and toes digging into the floor, in a plank position.
- Move one hand about four to six inches up.
- Bend your elbows and lower your body onto the floor, while lowering chest to the ground.
- Press back to high plank level.
- Move the other hand about four to six inches above the other.
Note: Allow your feet to shuffle and follow your hands, as well.
8. Box squat into box jump
This routine brings focus on power and strength. It can strengthen quads, abs, and glutes. For doing this routine, set up a box that allows you to a parallel squat while sitting down. Set up a higher box that is approximately thigh-high in front of it.
- Dip down into squat position on the lower box until you sit down.
- Pause for few seconds on the box.
- Maintain the tension in your muscles.
- Explode off the ground onto the higher box.
- Jump off your seat.
Note: Do not attempt this routine on an uneven surface. Make sure to land lightly on the platform while trying such plyo box workout.
9. Toe Taps
Toe taps are important for all body types, including those with back pain. You can try this routine as a warm-up for other intense abdominal exercises to strengthen your whole midsection.
- Stand behind the plyometrics jump box. Place your right foot on top of the surface to make your legs form a right angle from standing position.
- Adjust accordingly.
- Use the right side of the ball to touch the surface. Jump as you switch feet and land with the left ball of the foot touching the ground.
- Switch back to right foot to complete one rep.
Note: You can continue to alternate the feet with a jump between each switch, while remaining light on the toes. Repeat for 30 seconds.
10. Jump Lunges
For attaining tight, toned legs, try the jump lunges routine! This routine is an intense workout regime to increase burn and tone calves.
- Start by stretching your feet hip-width apart to a comfortable lunge position.
- Step right foot back.
- Sink hips down while keeping left knee behind left toe.
- Step out of lunge position into the air making sure you land softly keeping right leg in front and left leg behind.
- Jump again and switch sides to complete one rep.
- Continue alternating lunges.
Note: Maintain proper lunge forms to protect your knees. Repeat this regime for 30 seconds.
11. Star Jumps
Star jumps are a great routine and beneficial for your body. Before starting with this exercise, make sure you perform it on a flat, padded surface. You can also keep a mirror handy to adjust your position.
- Stand with your feet together.
- Lower into crouching position using hands in front of toes or beside feet.
- Jump forward as high as you can.
- Reach out for both arms and legs to form a star shape using your body. Keep your core straight and controlled in the air.
- Reposition limps to center as you land while returning to crouching starting position.
Note: Repeat same reps for 30 seconds.
12. Donkey-kick push-up
Donkey-kick push-up is a winning move for strengthening your body. This exercise targets your whole body from head to toe. You just need to engage your cores, as you go about it.
- Start in a high plank position keeping feet together, while engaging abs, legs, and glutes.
- Hop your feet half-way towards your hands.
- Engage your core, hop your feet higher, bend your knees, and kick your butt.
- Jump back to hit full plank position.
- Perform one push-up, while maintaining a straight line from shoulders to ankles.
- Repeat from start.
Note: Inhale breath from downward motion and exhale as you push yourself up.
In this routine, you have to work your body from side-to-side motion. This will strengthen your core, legs, arms, ad glutes. You can pick up pace or step with each rep.
- Start by standing erect.
- Hold a med ball using both hands.
- Pull back left foot to jump to the right side. Bring your left foot behind right leg.
- Push the ball diagonally to the right and overhead.
- Jump to the left and swing your right foot behind your left leg.
- At the same time, bring back the ball to your chest at the middle, then towards your left, and overhead.
- Repeat the skater motion using your feet, back to the right, while moving the ball diagonally down to the outside of your right foot.
- Repeat the same skater motion using your feet. Jump to the left again.
Note: Continue using skaters while keeping your movement controlled, yet vigorous.
14. Squat Jump Tap
This routine can allow you to bring your inner thigh together with your legs, while you imitate a basketball shot to get both your arms involved.
- Stand keeping your feet-hip width apart.
- Hold a med ball using both hands.
- Push your hips back and dip your body into a squat, while touching the floor with the med ball.
- Explode off your feet to jump straight up, and push the ball forward.
- Tap your feet together while on the air.
- Make a soft landing using heels, keeping feet hip-width apart and knees bent.
Note: Repeat the steps. Keep your head and eyes up the entire time.
15. Cross mountain climber Mini Thruster
This routine is a creative combination that strengthens your entire body, including shoulders, abs, and legs. You can skip the box for this routine, and do it on the floor.
- Start with a high plank position using both hands on the box and toes on the floor.
- Drive your left knee up towards right elbow.
- Return to plank position.
- Drive your right knee upwards towards left elbow.
- Return to plank position.
- Repeat one more cross mountain climber using each leg.
- Keep both hands on the box and jump both feet wide apart from the box.
- Jump your feet back to a plank.
- Repeat from the start.
Note: Remember the faster you go with this routine, the more calories you will burn.
16. Dot Drill
The dot drill can increase foot speed and swiftness. It can also increase ankle and calf strength. For this routine, you will need a dotted mat positioned in front of you. Or, you can mark five dotted spots on a dice.
- Start with your feet on the two corner dots at the end of the mat.
- Jump slightly off from the ground while bringing back your feet together on the middle dot.
- Jump slightly and separate your feet.
- Repeat movements in reverse. That makes one rep.
- Repeat 10 times.
- Start with the second sequence. It is the same as the first except you have to turn around and repeat the movement once you reach the far end of the mat.
- Repeat the sequence 10 times.
- Begin the third sequence by hopping on each dot on one leg.
- Start from the dot in the right corner.
- Hop to the middle dot using one leg, then move to the right, then left, backwards to the middle, then to the front left, and back to the front right.
- That completes one rep. Repeat 10 times.
Note: Perform same sequence using the other foot 10 times and another 10 times using both feet.
17. BOSU Ball Burpees
Burpees are a full-body exercise. You can add a BOSU ball for extra resistance and balance. It also requires core strength.
- Hold a BOSU ball in front of you.
- Dip your body into a squat position keeping your feet and shoulder-width apart.
- Bring back your knees to your chest.
- Explode up, and jump into the air using the BOSU ball above your head.
- Land softly on the ground.
Note: Move to the next rep immediately after you land on the ground.
Tips to follow while doing plyometrics exercises:
1. Take breaks in between
It is essential for you to take breaks while performing plyometrics to achieve full strength. You can rest for full time in between sets. If a set leaves you fatigued, you can add on 30 seconds to your break time.
2. Make a soft landing
Be mindful of the landing to avoid injuries to your knees and legs. Make a soft landing each time you finish one rep.
3. Keep your form precise
Keep your set clean and be strict about your technique. Maintaining a proper form can allow you to get the most of each movement and reduce risk of injury.
These are few plyometrics exercises which can allow you to stay fit. Share us your thoughts if you perform these variations in the comment box below.
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