The power jump is a high-impact plyometric exercise to build your lower body muscles.
It is a difficult exercise that is popular among seasoned athletes.
It is a combination of strength and cardio training. Power jumps also work on your mobility and flexibility.
The exercise also works on multiple muscles and joints.
To do this exercise:
- Get into the starting position by standing tall with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Flex your knees to bend your knees into a half-squat position.
- Push through your heels and explosively jump as high as you can while swinging your arms forward and make sure your knees reach the same level as your hands. Your hands should be hip height.
- To go back down, straighten your legs and land on your feet. Bend your knees slightly to reduce the impact on your lower back.
- Return to the half-squat position and swing your arms behind you to prime your body for the next jump.
- Repeat as desired.
WHAT MUSCLES DO POWER JUMP WORK?
The power jump primarily works on the quads, hamstrings and glutes. You can also feel the effects on the erector spinae and calves.
Your quadriceps, also known as your quads, is made up of four muscles found in the anterior part of the thigh. They are the vastus lateralis, vastus medialis, vastus intermedius and rectus femoris.
The vastus lateralis is the powerhouse of your quads. It is the strongest and largest that connects from the femur down the outer front part of the thigh and inserts into the knee. It helps keep your knee stable and extends your knee.
The vastus medialis is the teardrop muscle. It originates from the femur to the knee along the inner middle part of the thigh. When it’s fully developed, it looks like a teardrop just above the knee, hence the name. It helps you extend the knee and prevent your knee joint from twisting.
The vastus intermedius is found beneath the rectus femoris. It is the innermost quads. It also connects from the femur to the knee joint. Its main job is knee extension.
The rectus femoris is located in the middle of the thigh. It is the quadricep muscle that crosses over both the hip and knee joint. It helps flex the thigh and extend the leg at the knee.
These are the muscles found on the back of your thighs.
They comprise three muscles. The biceps femoris, the semitendinosus and the semimembranosus.
They start from the lower pelvis and join below the knee. Only the biceps femoris originates from the lower femur.
The hamstrings help with hip extension, hyperextension and knee flexion.
The glutes are superficial muscles found in the back of your pelvis. They give your butt its characteristic round shape.
The glutes are made up of three muscles. The gluteus maximus, gluteus minimus and gluteus medius.
The gluteus maximus is the largest of the muscles. It helps with hip adduction, extension and hyperextension.
The gluteus medius lies beneath the gluteus maximus. Its main role is hip abduction and helping with stabilizing your hip.
The gluteus minimus is the smallest gluteal muscle. It helps stabilize the hip joint, hip abduction and internal rotation of the leg.
4. ERECTOR SPINAE
This is a group of muscles that makes up half your core. These muscles cover your back from your hips to the base of your skull.
These muscles line your spine and help with lateral flexion and extension and rotation of your torso.
They contain the spinalis, longissimus and iliocostalis. The spinalis is the smallest and is closest to the spine.
The longissimus is the largest muscle and it helps you bend sideways and with spine extension. It also helps you turn your neck.
The iliocostalis also helps you bend sideways and extend your spine.
Calves are made up of two muscles. They are the soleus and the gastrocnemius.
The soleus is the large muscle in the back of the lower leg. It lies beneath the gastrocnemius.
Your calves help you move forward, backwards and absorb impact when you’re walking, running or jumping.
POWER JUMP BENEFITS
1. INCREASED ATHLETIC ABILITY
Many sports require quick, agile, explosive movements. Power jumps strengthen your legs to make these movements possible.
This will help you perform better at sports such as football, basketball or swimming.
This exercise will also help you increase your vertical range.
2. HELP WITH WEIGHT LOSS
This exercise is a high-intensity exercise. In addition to helping you grow and maintain lean muscle mass, it helps you burn calories even at rest.
It is highly effective when added to a HIIT routine.
3. IMPROVED POSTURE
Because you need to engage your core to keep your back straight, you improve your posture when you do this exercise.
A stronger lower back also helps you keep your back straight when doing sedentary activities.
ALTERNATIVES TO POWER JUMP
This is a great low-impact alternative to the power jump.
To do this exercise:
- Place your left foot on a raised platform such as a bench or box. Press through your left heel to lift your right foot to join your left.
- Return to the starting position by lowering your left foot to the floor. Lower the other foot to join the first.
- Repeat 15 steps for each foot for three sets.
2. ROTATIONAL BOX JUMP
To do this exercise:
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and the box about a foot away from you.
- Bend your knees so that you’re in a half squat. Swing your arms behind you.
- Push through your heels explosively to jump to the top of the box. Swing your arms forward for balance.
- Land with both feet twisting your body 90 degrees.
- Twist your body as you jump up to do the next rep.
- Repeat as desired.
POWER JUMP MISTAKES TO AVOID
Don’t hold your breath when doing the power jump. You need as much oxygen as possible in your lungs.
You need to ensure that you are in proper form when attempting this exercise. Jumping from the wrong angle can lead you to twist your ankle.
Additionally, ensure you do it on a surface that is smooth and can reduce the impact on your joints. Avoid loose gravel.
As you do more power jumps, you can get tired and start to lean forward. Try to avoid this as it can lead to lower back pain and reduces the effectiveness of the exercise.