Plyometrics – The Most Effective Exercise You’ve Never Heard Of

If you’ve ever wanted to learn how to exercise with maximum efficiency in minimum time, yet still achieve great weight loss and fitness results, then you’re in luck. That’s because this report will reveal to you a high intensity, all body workout that you can do almost anywhere, anytime, without the need for any equipment. Indeed, in just moments you’ll discover:

· How to achieve fat loss, body toning and all round fitness

· A surprisingly simple way to combine strength, cardio and agility training

· A cost-effective way you get all the exercise you need in minimal time

Read on to learn more…

This article is about the exercise almost no-one know about… Plyometrics. Sometimes referred to as “jump training” or “plyos”, plyometrics are intensive “jumping” type exercises that are aimed at developing and increasing your body’s power and speed. Used to help train athletes in sports that require explosive movements such as basketball, volleyball and tennis, plyometric exercises involve a series of jumps and hops using one or both legs to help build and strengthen muscles and increase performance.

Short, sharp and simple, plyometric exercise routines require maximum effort in rapid time, training muscles with your body’s own weight, without the need for exercise equipment. The exercises, centred on explosive movements such as lunge hops or squat jumps, bridge the gap between speed and strength by powerfully challenging many muscle groups at the same time allowing you burn fat, build muscle and get a cardio workout at the same time.

Lower Body Benefits

All plyo exercises help you get fit and lose weight, but the two main types of plyo exercises that work your lower body and core are bounding or hurdling and drop jumping.

Of the two, bounding and hurdling exercises are lower impact. Using over-sized strides, they help ramp up your strength and speed by targeting the legs and muscle groups in the lower torso area. The larger the strides (and therefore the more time you spend in the air) are the more effective the exercise will be. Bounding and hurdling (as well as hopping) are forward motion exercises, however you can use jump lunges as a “static” alternative.

Drop jumping is a higher impact exercise. As the name suggests, drop jumping means simply dropping (as opposed to jumping) off a raised platform or step to the ground, then immediately jumping back up onto it – the concentric phase of the action is where the plyometric benefit is gained. You can judge the effectiveness of the exercise (as well as the level of your fitness) by the amount of time your feet are on the ground – the shorter the time your feet are in contact with the floor, the better (T. COMYNS Exploding into action, Athletics Weekly (2012). The idea here is to jump fast, jump high.

The moves don’t all need to be complicated or advanced. Simple plyometric exercises such as star jumps or tuck jumps are great to start off with. Progressing onto box jumps would be the next step once you feel confident and have built up your fitness.

Below are some example exercises you can try right away:

Tuck Jumps:

· From a standing position, jump up and ‘hug’ your knees with your hands as they come up to your chest

· Land on the balls of your feet back into the standing position

· By anticipating the landing, try and keep your feet on the ground for as short a time as possible, and spring up as quickly as you can

Box Jumps

· Place exercise steps or an exercise bench (the “box”) directly in front of you. Using a test step-up, ensure that it’s not too high or too far out in front, and that you can clear the edge without tripping.

· Squat down in front of the step, and keeping the knees behind the toes reach backwards and low with your arms for leverage.

· Swing your arms with a forward motion and launch out of the squat position and jump on top of the step or bench. Once landed, gain your composure and balance, the drop into another squat with your hands held out in front of you.

· Carefully take a step down backwards onto the floor, one foot at a time. From this starting position you are ready to start the next rep.

Upper body Gains

Even though plyo exercises are designed to challenge the larger muscle groups in the lower body, (core, torso and thighs for example) there are plyo exercises that work the upper body muscles as well.

The plyo pushup is one of the most basic but effective upper body plyo exercises you can do. More advanced variations include the plyo box pushup.

Some example upper body exercises include:

Plyo Pushup:

· From a standard pushup position on the floor, get your core engaged as you place your palms on the floor surface with your hands beneath your shoulders and legs stretched out straight.

· Lower into a low pushup position with your chest just above the floor.

· Then, using explosive power, push yourself up as high as you can ensuring you pass your original starting position level, and clap your hands under your chest. Then land back in the starting position cushioning your landing with your hands on the surface. You’re ready to begin the second rep.

Plyo Box Pushups

· Get two steps or sturdy boxes and place them just wide of shoulder width apart while you are in the standard pushup position.

· Start with each hand on each box and lower into a low pushup position with your chest between the two boxes.

· Using explosive power, push yourself up as high as you can ensuring you pass your original starting position level, and clap your hands under your chest. Land on the floor, (not on your original starting position on the boxes) cushioning your landing with your hands. That’s one rep.

· The second rep starts with you launching off the floor this time, clapping your hands under your chest, and landing with your hands on each of the boxes.

· Next rep starts with you taking off from the boxes and landing on the floor

· Alternate each rep landing and launching off the floor and boxes respectively

But It’s Not Just About Exercise…

You’ve just discovered what plyometric exercises are all about. There are a whole host of plyo exercises available that will never fail to work up a serious sweat, lose weight and make you feel like you’ve accomplished a serious and beneficial workout. And that means you can now take action to find the ones that suit your level of fitness and start right away.

However, a word of warning – most plyometric exercises are high impact and so place a large strain on the muscles and other tissues in the body. If you are unsure of your fitness levels start slow, or even check with your doctor or health professional before beginning any exercise.

Also, just as importantly, knowing about an exercise routine isn’t going to give you the health results you want. Only taking action will, and that includes making healthy overall choices on a daily basis that will get you the fat loss, muscle strength and overall radiant health results you are looking for.