Box Jumps

When people think of plyometrics exercises, often the first thing that comes to mind is box jumps. They are certainly the easiest representation of what plyometrics is all about—fast, explosive movements.

However, most people actually do them wrong, and therefore give up a lot of their benefits in the process.

When done properly, box jumps not only increase your vertical jump and explosiveness, but they can also help you get faster and burn fat.

This article is all about the proper way to do box jumps and get the most out of them.

Mistakes People Make When Performing Box Jumps

The concept of box jumps seems exceedingly simple—get a box, jump on top, repeat. Easy right?

So how is that people make mistakes? The two biggest mistakes people make are: choosing a box that is too high, and, staying on the ground too long.

Let’s look at them in order.

Choosing The Right Box For Your Box Jumps

People often choose a box that is at, or near, the top of their vertical jumping range. That means that they have to put maximal effort into each jump, and as the exercise progresses, their form gets sloppy—leaving them open for injury and reducing the effectiveness of the training.

Get a box that is in the range of 80-90% of your vertical jump for regular training. That means if you have a 20 inch vertical, your box would be 16-18 inches (these numbers are used mainly for illustration and ease of math calculations).

There is definitely a time for using a larger box (mainly for testing your vertical jump), but for regular training, this is a good range.

Don’t Linger On The Ground

The second mistake people make when doing box jumps is staying on the ground far too long.

Box Jumps

In between jumping on the box, you should not be sitting on the ground collecting yourself for extended periods of time. The key is to spring off of the ground as quickly as possible.

This forces your muscles to contract quickly, ultimately making you faster and more explosive.

This has the added benefit of also raising your heart rate and energy output levels, which will help you burn more calories and in the end, be leaner.

One of the reasons people stay on the ground too long is because they make mistake #1: they choose a box that is too high. If the box is to high, you have to collect yourself and increase your concentration and effort to make the jump.

It is really imperative to select the right sized box to begin with.

Do Them Right…It’s Worth It

Doing box jumps as a part of your bodyweight training routine is absolutely worth it. You will be faster, more agile, and be able to jump out of your shoes!

Imagine yourself after 8 weeks of plyometrics training making your buddies look silly in your pick up basketball game because you are out jumping them all over the court.

That is what doing box jumps will do for you.

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