Skater jumps are a highly cardiovascular-intensive plyometric exercise in which you mimic the motion of an ice rink skater.
The motion is made by you jumping from side to side with one leg while throwing your hands back, interchangeably.
HOW TO DO SKATER JUMPS
Required equipment: none
- Begin by standing upright, slightly bending your knees with your feet about shoulder-width apart.
- Ensure that your shoulders are directly over your hips and facing forward keeping your neck in a neutral position.
- Your feet should be planted on the floor to give you a good grip. Distribute your weight evenly across both legs, ensuring you are as stable as possible.
- Inhale deeply and exhale as you tense up your hips and shoulders and tighten your core.
- Move your weight onto your left leg and further, slightly bend your left knee and left hip.
- Your chest should slightly point downwards and be over your hips. Your right foot should be about an inch or two off the ground.
- Move your right arm across your body and your left arm to move behind your left hip. Twist your upper body towards your left leg.
- Make sure that you feel most of your body weight loaded on your left hip. This is your starting position.
- Launch your body off your left leg and at the same time swing your left arm across your body and push your right arm behind your hips in a running motion.
- Have both your arms bent at the elbow at ninety degrees? Keep both arms close to you as you make the lateral jump.
- Extend your right leg slightly to try and brace your landing, you should land in a quarter squat position.
- Remember to keep your core engaged in helping stabilize your upper body to prevent yourself from tipping over.
- Jump off your right leg while moving your right arm across the front of your body and pushing your left arm to behind your back.
- Stretch out your left leg to brace your landing again into a quarter squat position. Engage your core to help you keep your balance.
- Repeat this motion for 10 reaps, counting both jumps as one for three sets.
WHAT MUSCLES DO SKATER JUMPS WORK?
Skater jumps work your lower body muscles, primarily your hamstrings, glutes and calves. The exercise also strengthens your ankles.
BENEFITS OF DOING SKATER JUMPS
PROVIDE CARDIO EXERCISE
Skater jumps rapidly elevate your heart rate as it requires you to use most of the major muscle groups in your body.
This causes your body to burn calories and break down the fat to produce this energy.
INCREASES BALANCE AND COORDINATION
Skater jumps challenge your stabilizers, namely your core and lower back, throughout the workout. This causes you to build your balance over time.
IT HELPS IN BUILDING MUSCLE
Skater jumps activate and challenge most of your lower body and with proper form and discipline, these muscles grow over time and become more powerful.
IMPROVES YOUR ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE
The exercise strengthens your lower body, making you more explosive, thus raising your acceleration and jumping height which in most field sports is a plus for any player.
ALTERNATIVES TO DOING SKATER JUMPS
This bodyweight warm-up exercise works your quadriceps and abs while improving your hip mobility.
How to do the scorpion:
Required equipment: none (a mat is optional)
- Sit down on your mat, bend your knees at ninety degrees, and place your arm behind you and directly under your shoulders.
- Lift your buttocks to about three inches off your mat and hover above it as if you were in a crab position.
- Hold this position for three seconds letting it stretch your glutes, back, arms, and legs. This is your starting position.
- Move your left elbow towards your right knee and twist your upper body through a one-hundred-and-eighty-degree angle to bring your chest facing the mat.
- Both your hands, your left foot and your face should be facing your mat.
- Continue to twit but now mostly your lower body by driving your right leg up and backward so that it creates an arc over your left leg. Hold this for about two seconds.
- Lift your right hand off the mat and rotate your back, lowering your right foot to the mat.
- Keep your right hand up and left leg outstretched as you return to your starting position.
- Reverse this movement now using your right arm and right leg.
- Repeat the motion for ten reps in a set of three, counting each complete motion as one rep.
This compound exercise works your hamstrings, lower back and glutes as primary muscles. Also known as the back squat, it also works your core muscles.
How to do a barbell squat:
Required equipment: Barbell, squat rack and plate weights.
- Load the barbell with your preferred weight ensuring you have enough space behind the squat rack to take a few steps back.
- Step underneath the barbell placing the weight on the upper part of your shoulders and gripping each side firmly.
- Make sure that the barbell rests on your upper back muscles. Unrack it and take a few steps away from the rack.
- Keeping your posture upright and feet shoulder-width apart, slightly bend your knees.
- Ensure the weight is evenly distributed across your feet. Tense up your hips and shoulders and flex your core.
- Slowly move downwards by bending your knees, hips and ankles. Move down till your legs are parallel to the floor.
- Hold the bottom position for about three seconds. Push your feet into the ground and extend your feet as you stand up.
- Keep your chest high and activate your glutes until you straighten your knees.
- Repeat this for ten reps for two sets.
SKATER JUMPS MISTAKES TO AVOID
NOT USING YOUR ARMS AND HIPS FOR MOMENTUM
Using your arms while doing skater jumps improves your explosiveness to propel you from one side to the other as you jump. This trains you to use your explosiveness as you run or jump.
Skater jumps are a highly intense cardiovascular exercise that not only helps in burning a lot of calories but also strengthens your entire body.
It requires no equipment to perform, making it an easy exercise to add to your workout routine because you only need enough space.