Making it to the gym can be tough. Between everyday life, taking care of family and juggling work responsibilities, finding the time can seem impossible. However, plyometric workouts are simple exercises that you can perform in the comforts of your own home.
Plyometric workouts help increase the power of athletic movements, according to performance enhancement specialist Jowan Ortega.
“Plyometric workouts use both the natural elastic components of muscles, tendons and the stretch reflex,” Ortega says. “Performing plyometric exercises develops muscular power and bone-strength adaptation. This can help athletes prepare for the demands of sport and competition by enhancing muscular control and performance.”
Some plyometric exercises include broad jumps, lateral bounds, medicine ball slams and multi-directional line hops. Learn how to do these four exercises with these Pro Tips.
HOW TO DO BROAD JUMPS
Begin this exercise by standing straight up. Keep your feet outside of your shoulders and raise your arms in the air. Once you are in this position:
- Swing your arms back behind you. Your arms should be at a slant, with your fingers pointing toward the ground.
- As you swing your arms back, propel your body forward, jumping off the ground. Try to jump as far forward as possible. Bend your knees to get as much momentum as you can.
- Land in the universal athletic position, with your knees bent and your arms in a slanted line with your torso.
HOW TO DO LATERAL BOUNDS
Stand on your left leg, with your right leg bent. Your heel should be up toward the ceiling, with your toes facing the ground. Your back should be at a slant, with your right arm in front of you to help with balance.
Once you’re comfortable in this position:
- Jump to the side, with your right leg now in contact with the ground.
- Your left leg should assume the position that your right leg held before the jump. Keep it in the air, with your toes pointing down and your heel up.
- As you jump through the air, move your arms in motion with your body. Your right arm that was in front of you should stretch out toward the side. Meanwhile, your left arm should now be in front of you to help with balance.
- Repeat, remembering to alternate starting legs.
HOW TO DO MEDICINE BALL SLAMS
For this exercise, you’ll need a medicine ball as your only piece of equipment. Bring the medicine ball up in the air, with one hand on each side. Keep your feet shoulder-width apart and flat on the ground.
Once you’re in this position:
- Slam the ball straight down to the ground.
- Hold out your hands over the medicine ball. This will help prevent the ball from bouncing back up and making contact with you.
- Pick up the ball and lift it back in the air.
MULTI-DIRECTIONAL LINE HOPS
This exercise does not require equipment. However, you do need a surface with a line on it, like a football field or a basketball court. If you’re doing this exercise at home, consider using an agility ladder. However, you can also use the lines on a sidewalk.
With your equipment or surface ready to go:
- Start behind the line and hop over the line.
- In a continuous, but controlled, motion, hop back over the line.
- Repeat for a set number of time or repetitions.
- You can also do this exercise by jumping over the side. Instead of facing the line straight on, hop over the line sideways.
Plyometric training is great for the gym or an at-home workout. Be sure to implement these plyometric exercises into your next strength training workout and begin building power.
Want to learn how to add resistance and strengthen your core? Front planks are great exercises to help athletes build stability. Learn how to do a front plank with these Pro Tips.