The benefits of plyometrics for runners and exercise samples

Adding plyometrics to your training program can help you build muscle, which means you’ll be able to gain more speed and power.

A little reminder first though; Plyometric exercises are not suitable if you are a beginner. This is because plyometrics are explosive exercises and require rapid and forceful recruitment of muscle fibers. These exercises are the last building block of your strength-building training program and you should only do plyometrics once you’ve built a solid foundation.

We recommend that you have at least 8-10 weeks of a running-specific strength-building program under your belt before you begin adding plyometrics to your regimen. In addition, you should also be able to practice using proper form during your plyometric exercises. Poor form during plyometric exercises can significantly increase your risk of injury.

Using the hard days/easy days principle, we recommend that you do your plyometric exercises after your intense training days. You should only do them once a week and use other strength training days to train your core and other injury prevention workouts.

Here we have compiled examples of six plyometric exercises that you can incorporate into your training regimen:

switch lunge

You start in the lunge position and have one foot in front and the other behind your body. You need to bend your knees at a 90 degree angle and make sure that your front knee is just over your front ankle. Following this, you jump up, switch legs in the air, and land in another lunge position on the opposite side. You need to do between 20 and 30 repetitions.

one leg jumps

You need to hop in place using one foot 15 times and then switch using the other foot to hop for the same reps.

leg limits

You must move forward using an exaggerated running form and jump with each step for about 30 meters. Repeat between 2 and 3 times.

bench taps

You begin this exercise by standing in front of a bench, and then quickly strike the top of the bench with each foot. Your arms should be in a running motion as your feet touch the bench. You need to do between 20 and 40 repetitions.

box jump

You should get a box that is around 2 feet tall and stand in front of it. Then you do the squat and jump onto the box swinging your arms forward to gain momentum. After this, you jump back out of the box and land softly. You have to do 10 repetitions.

rocket jumping

You should stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and then lower into a squat position. You should then touch the ground with your hands and explode up with your hands stretched over your head. When you land, you should return to the squat position. Do between 10 and 15 repetitions.

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