One of the exercises I look back on and wish I had incorporated in my workout routine are lower body plyometric training exercises to get fit faster. Although I don’t see or hear many personal trainers using this in gyms I truly believe that including them in your workouts are an excellent alternative to cardio.
(Example of Plyometric Box Jumps)
Few people truly love doing steady state cardio exercises. However, ask someone if they want to do cardio that will get them to look like an athlete and train like an athlete and few will back down from the challenge.
Plyometric training exercises are in my opinion some of the most fun and most effective workouts for burning fat and developing muscle at the same time. Although it is often taught that the way to burn fat is by separating cardio and weight training workouts, the truth is muscle-building workouts can be combined together with cardio for quicker results.
What exactly are plyometrics exercises?
Plyometrics are exercises use fast movement in order to improve a person’s athletic performance. The goal is always to use high power and explosiveness in every movement by stimulating fast twitch muscles. The result of using these types of exercises is running faster, jumping higher, and throwing faster.
(Olympic Sprinter Linford Christie Doing Advanced Plyometrics)
As you can see this type of workout is important for any athlete in just about any sport. Work for explosiveness and you end up performing better all around. By working on the muscles in this way they then have to adapt and grow to perform better.
How does this help you?
By doing the same type of exercise as an athlete you too can get an improved body. Your goal is not to break records or be the fastest guy in your town, but by training in this way your body will react by looking lean and muscular and burn more fat.
Lower Body Plyometrics Workout
- Bodyweight lunge: Perform a lunge one leg at a time. Keep your back straight and make sure the knee is in line with your ankle.
- Squat Jumps: stand with your legs open at a shoulder width stance. Go down to a squat position and jump up in a fast and explosive manner. Perform each repetition without stopping.
- Side to Side Hop: Stand in the same position then jump to one side and land on foot then jump to then next side and land on the other foot. Pretend like you are a speed skater and you get the idea of how to do it.
- Standing Jump and Reach: Stand in the same position and in front of a wall or a basketball rim. Raise your arms up and jump as high as possible. With each jump try to reach the highest point on the wall or the rim.
Perform 3 to 4 sets of each exercise and 10 repetitions. Do this exercise as a circuit with no rest in between. For example perform each exercise back to back. When you finish with the last exercise simply repeat the sequence.
This workout will help you get strong leg development and get your heart rate up for a great cardio workout. If you feel like you can handle more you can do a series of sprints for 15 minutes either before or after this circuit.
So there you have it, these lower body plyometrics training exercises will have you training like an athlete and have you looking like one too.