The Box Jumps Box jumps are a type of full-body plyometric exercise. In fact, this exercise is also known as the "plyometric jump." This exercise, very common in training crossfit, unifies the benefits of a cardiovascular and strength training in a single movement.
By including the Box Jumps explosive power is developed in the lower body in the training routine. In addition, it is an exercise considered very good to increase the height of the vertical jump.
If you are in good physical shape, Including box jumps in your training will help you increase speed and strength. This is useful for people who want to improve their performance in all kinds of sports. On the other hand, this exercise allows you to work the muscles from head to toe, as well as agility, balance and coordination.
How to do Box Jumps: basic exercise
Jumping onto a raised platform seems very simple. And it is. But it's not just about climbing, it's about getting it right. You can jump up to the drawer in any way and you will get an effective movement – after all, you're up right?
However, it is about performing an efficient movement, which in this case means maximizing the effect while minimizing the risk of injury. Executing the box jumps correctly and efficiently involves the following steps:
Stand in front of the drawer, a short stride away, shoulder-width apart.
Bend your knees slightly. Lower your hips a little (up to a quarter squat) to gain momentum as you bring your arms back. Do this by activating the core muscles.
Use momentum to propel yourself upward as you jump onto the box, assisting you with the swing of your arms.
Land gently on both feet with a slight bend in the knees, without dropping the hips too low (it should be slightly above the knees). The arms are stretched forward to balance.
Take a step back and down, and repeat.
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Most common mistakes
Box jumps are only beneficial when performed with correct technique and efficiently. In this sense, in addition to paying attention to the correct way to perform the exercise, it is important to note the following:
Don't use too tall a box. If the box is too high, you may not be able to climb, which could lead to injury. And if you do, the landing will force you to squat very deep.
Don't get out of the box by jumping backwards. In this exercise, the jump is made to go up, not to go down. Although your body can efficiently absorb the landing of a box jump, the same is not the case with the jump back. If you do so, you run the risk of injury.
Watch out for the landing. After the jump up, the knees should be aligned with the ankles, not outwards or inwards. Also, you must be careful with the hips; It should be slightly higher than the knees.
Always get off the box with the same leg. You should alternate the leg with which you come down from the drawer so as not to overload one on the other. If you have trouble remembering which one you came down with in the previous jump, do a series going down with one and another going down with the opposite.
Not heating properly. Box jumps are an intense exercise that requires a good warm-up. If you have not warmed up properly, the risk of injury is very high, both from the force required by the push and from the impact of landing.
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Box hopping variations
Once you have mastered the box jumps you can incorporate more demanding variations. Some of these variations are as follows:
With one leg. You can take off and land on one leg or, if this is too much, take off with one and land with two.
Twist jump. Stand with the box aside. This position implies the need to do a rotation to jump and land on both feet.
Jump in two steps. Stand one meter from the box. Take a first jump forward and a second jump up. You can increase the challenge by getting further and further away, which will involve a longer first jump.
Burpee with jump. To increase the challenge, take a burpee before making the jump.
Sitting jump. To develop more explosiveness, start from a seated position so you don't have the benefit of the initial push. Start by sitting on a bench the same height as the box before using a taller one.
Weighted jump. Use weight to increase the difficulty of the basic exercise. You can use weighted items (vests, wristbands, etc.) or a pair of light dumbbells.
Why Include Box Jumps in Workouts
The biggest benefit of box jumps is that they enhance the reaction of fast-twitch muscle fibers throughout the body. This is because this type of jump requires the leg and core muscles to contract very quickly in order to generate maximum force with each jump.
Plyometric activity occurs in the landing phase. The benefit here is obtained because reduces the risk of injury and increases the ability to make sudden stops in other activities. The higher and more explosive you jump, the more muscle tissue is activated.
On the other hand, box jumps are great for completing quadriceps training, since some fast-twitch muscle fibers are activated that are generally not worked during other types of usual exercises, presses or squats. Additionally, the landing phase also requires a tremendous amount of strength in the quadriceps.
Finally, it should be noted that the Box Jumps they are also a great exercise to incorporate into your fat loss workoutas they are very demanding on the metabolic system and therefore burn a lot of energy.
The Box Jumps help train all muscle groups in the lower bodyincluding the glutes, hamstrings, quads, and calves, which have to work together and in coordination to improve power and strength.
However, beyond the lower body, box jumps also require a lot of core engagement and a controlled swing motion of the arms, so box jumps are a full body exercise.
Keep in mind that this is not an exercise for everyone. In addition to having good technique, you also have to be in excellent physical shape. For this reason, it is more than advisable to start with low boxes and only when enough strength and power have been developed to do the jumps correctly.
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