Adding plyometric boxes to your workouts is a great way to improve your explosivity and endurance.
When you train your ability to jump higher, you’ll be able to perform better in other sports and activities. The benefits that you get from box jumps are transferable into other aspects of fitness – for example, if you play basketball or football, box jumps can help with improving your vertical leap. Or if you enjoy rock climbing, these exercises will help with explosive movements when jumping from one hold to the next.
Let’s take a deep dive into all of the main benefits of box jumps, and more importantly, how to do them correctly.
How to do Box Jumps Correctly
Like a ski jumper before take-off, begin in a low squat position and spread your arms out behind you. Now push yourself off the ground with all of your leg power and use your arms for momentum. Make sure to land softly with both feet on the box and absorb the jump with your legs. Jump down from the box, and you’re ready to go again. You should remain in full control of the movement, as chaotic and messy movements could lead to injuries.
Before You Start
You’ll need strong legs and good coordination. Make sure you’re using a sturdy box on a flat surface that won’t move.
Generally speaking, the height of the box should come up to your knees, but you can choose the size depending on your fitness levels and experience. You should begin on shorter boxes and work your way up to build your strength and confidence.
The Benefits of Box Jumps
Box jumps are one of the key workouts in plyometric training. They’re great for burning a substantial amount of calories through explosive jumping. Box jumps also help to build up your endurance, strength and coordination. Plyometric training has also been shown to improve stability and mobility. In turn, this makes you faster, more agile and balanced – providing improvements in other sports or physical activities.
One of the best things about box jumps is that they’re a total body workout. You’ll work your quads, hamstrings, glutes and calves when doing these exercises. As you progress and get stronger, the height of the box can be increased to make the exercise more challenging.
The excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC) is high with box jumps. This means that your body will continue to burn calories hours after you’ve finished the workout. So when it comes to burning fat and building muscle, this exercise offers great results.
Box jumps are also fun! It’s a great way of adding variety into your workouts so that you don’t get bored doing the same routines over and over again. You can either do them as part of a plyometric circuit or add them in between sets while strength training.
Add Variety to Your Box Jumps
You can get creative with your workouts, targeting different muscle groups and intensities, by incorporating these variants in to your box jumps:
Jumping Jacks to Jump Up
Stand in front of the box and begin with a jumping jack on the floor. Then jump onto the box with both feet, landing in a stable position. This exercise can also be done with a partner by alternating turns.
Burpee Step Up
Stand in front of the box and begin with a burpee. As soon as you finish the burpee, spring onto the box with both feet and repeat the jump or step down again.
Ball Crush Jump Up
You and a partner are both on the floor at either end of the box. Back and forth, toss a light medicine ball. One person catches the ball as another leaps onto the box.
So there you have it! The many benefits of box jumps. Be sure to try them out for yourself and see how much better you’ll perform in your other activities. And as always, consult with a fitness professional before starting any new exercises.