This explosive really works the lower body, torso, chest, and shoulders. Aim for high jumps at top speed for big results.
– Stand no more than an arm’s length from your plyo box with your feet shoulder-width apart. Very quickly perform a half-squat (this is simply done to build up momentum) and swing your arms backward.
– As your arms reach their maximum range, swing them forwards and upwards while simultaneously springing up to jump your feet on to the plyo box.
– You now have two options: A stand up fully or B stay in your landed position, then immediately jump back off the plyo box. Option A is more intense, and therefore preferable.
– As soon as you make contact with the floor you should go into rebound mode by dropping into the half-squat and moving on to the next repetition.
To get intensity into box jumps you need height and speed. Jumping high requires skill, while intensity is all about going fast. To achieve the former, you need to imagine that you can jump higher than the plyo box in front of you, so look up and keep trying until you have landed on the plyo box (this sounds obvious, but trust me, visualizing it makes a huge difference). If the plyo box is above knee height then you must exaggerate the knee lift and draw them upwards until they are almost hitting your chest, spreading them slightly further than hip-width apart. In addition, to generate forward momentum you need to throw your arms up and at least to shoulder height if you are going to quickly get up on the plyo box.
When you reverse the movement from plyo box to floor it needs to be a forced action, by which I mean it’s not enough to let gravity do its thing: you have to get down fast, so jump up and off the plyo box with a high level of urgency. As soon as you touch the ground, immediately move on to the next repetition.
Jumping has a profound effect on your body. Although you are only really exerting load when your feet are in contact with the floor or the plyo box, the rapid movements of the entire body that occur while in the air are good for you. That said, it’s when you are generating force that most of the gains occur, and since this exercise necessitates huge amounts of explosive strength in the lower body, torso and even your chest and shoulders, it’s another win-win move!
Why this made the HIIT list
When the fitness industry adopted the plyometric boxes, however, everything was turned upside down and the movement was reversed to create this fantastic high-intensity move.