Power skips exercise is a moderately difficult high-impact cardio exercise.
When done with intention and power, they are a great strengthening exercise.
Power skips are a plyometric exercise which means they exert maximum force on your muscles within a short time.
To do this exercise:
- Get into the starting position. Stand with your back straight and your abs tightened.
- Raise one knee and swing the opposite arm forward while hopping on your opposite knee.
- When you complete one lift, lower the raised knee and do the same for the opposite limbs.
- Shift your weight onto your lower leg as your feet skip.
- Continue for the desired reps.
WHAT MUSCLES DO POWER SKIPS WORK?
This is the largest muscle in the body. It’s found in the backside and is responsible for its characteristic round shape.
The glutes are made of three muscles, the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius and gluteus minimus.
The gluteus maximus is the largest muscle in the body. It is also one of the strongest muscles in the human body. It starts from the pelvis and runs to the femur.
The gluteus maximus helps transfer explosive power from the legs to the upper body.
The gluteus medius is found on the upper outer side of the butt. It is mostly covered by the gluteus maximus. It begins at the hip bone and runs to the hip. The gluteus medius is activated by power skips because its main role is to stabilize the femur during powerful movements.
The gluteus minimus is the smallest of the glutes. It starts at the hip bone and spreads to the femur. It works in conjunction with the gluteus medius.
The hamstrings are three groups of muscles found on the back of the thigh.
The hamstrings are made up of the semimembranosus, the semitendinosus and the biceps femoris.
The semimembranosus is a flat wide muscle. It starts at the bottom of the pelvis and spreads to the inner tibia. It is activated during flexion of the knee.
The semitendinosus covers most of the semimembranosus. It is mostly used for internal rotation of the knee.
The biceps femoris has two heads. One of them starts at the bottom of the pelvis and the other on the side of the upper leg bone. It is engaged during hip flexion, knee flexion and rotation.
The quads are four muscles in the front of the thigh. The quads comprise the vastus medialis, vastus intermedius, vastus lateralis and the rectus femoris.
They start at the upper hip bone and thigh bone and attach to the knee cap.
The vastus lateralis is the largest of the quads. It is found on the outer side of the thigh.
The vastus medialis is also known as the teardrop muscle. It runs in the middle of the anterior thigh.
The vastus intermedius is the deepest quad. It is found between the other two vastus quads, hence the name.
The rectus femoris crosses two joints, the hip and the knee.
The quads help extend the knee and thigh.
The calves are a duo of muscles found on the back of your lower leg. They’re made up of the soleus and the gastrocnemius.
The soleus is a large muscle that starts at the back of the tibia and attaches to the heel bone via the Achilles tendon.
The gastrocnemius lies above the soleus.
The calves help with providing power to your legs when doing power skips. They also help absorb impact.
POWER SKIPS BENEFITS
Power skips are a great exercise to add to your routine because they’re highly effective. They also cost next to nothing.
You can do them anywhere. They don’t require a lot of space and don’t require any equipment.
They’re appropriate for all fitness levels. You can make them easier for lower fitness levels or if you’re recovering from an injury.
They are also great for targeting multiple muscle groups.
2. WEIGHT LOSS
Power skips are a great exercise to add to a high-intensity interval training routine.
This means your body consumes more energy in a short amount of time.
This helps you burn more calories and reduce your body fat content. It can help you grow muscles and get fitter.
3. IMPROVE ATHLETIC ABILITY
Power skips can help improve your leg’s jumping power. This is especially useful if you’re an athlete.
You enhance your ability to lift off the ground with more power. This also helps you get more out of your other workouts.
As we mentioned earlier, this is a plyometric exercise. This means it helps grows muscle fibres that help with muscle contractions. This will boost your athletic ability.
4. REDUCE THE RISK OF INJURY
This exercise helps you build your muscles and tendons in your lower body. Stronger tendons minimize the risk of injury when you’re doing other exercises or living your daily life.
It will also improve your balance and reduce the risk of falling.
5. IMPROVE YOUR HEALTH
Doing this exercise at a fast pace helps boost your heart health.
When you do the skips fast, you increase your heart rate and make your lungs work harder. This improves your cardiovascular health and reduces the risk of high blood pressure and gives you a low resting heart rate.
Stronger lungs also help improve the ability to absorb more oxygen.
ALTERNATIVES TO POWER SKIPS
1. FROG JUMPS
To do this exercise:
- Get into the starting position by doing a full deep squat. Keep your back straight, your core engaged and your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Press your heels into the ground and jump as high as possible vertically.
- Land as lightly as possible and slowly lower into the starting position.
- Repeat as desired.
2. GRASSHOPPER EXERCISE
To do this exercise:
- Lie face down on a yoga mat. Rest your forehead on your hands. Bend your knees and lift your feet so they are touching each other above your knees.
- Turn your toes outward and your knees out so they are slightly more than hip-width apart and form a diamond shape.
- Contract your glutes and engage your abs to lift your knees off the floor about half a foot.
- Lower your knees back to the floor then repeat as needed.
POWER SKIPS MISTAKES TO AVOID
Don’t hold your breath while doing power skips. You need as much oxygen as possible.
This is a high-impact exercise. Avoid it if you have injuries in the knees or ankles.
Don’t round your back. This can lead to lower back pain.