How to Master The Plyometric Box Jump
If you’ve never attempted a box jump before, you might think it is an easy exercise. For lots of fitness beginners though, a plyometric box jump can be an intimidating exercise!
- Why do box jumps?
- How to progress to box jumps
- How to do a plyometric box jump
- Tips for doing plyometric box jumps
If it is an exercise you want to try or want to become better at doing, I’ve got a step-by-step guide to help you master this classic plyometric exercise.
Why do box jumps?
There are lots of benefits to doing box jumps!
Each time you propel your body upwards, you are calling on a number of muscle groups to work together. Plus, adding box jumps to a workout can improve your balance and coordination, help to build bone density and they are great cardio too.
How to progress to box jumps
If doing a box jump is something you’ve always wanted to master, I’ve put together some steps to help you get there.
Step one: squat
You may not have realised this but being comfortable doing squats can help you to master a box jump!
Next time you do a squat, take some time to think about your form. Your chest should be proud, your hips and knees should be bent and your weight should be in your heels. For those girls who want more of a challenge, you could try a jump squat instead!
Step two: step up and down
If you’ve never done a box jump before, fear can hold you back. That’s why it is good to work on building your confidence with a few progression exercises. By stepping onto the box and stepping down again, you gradually get more comfortable with the movement and this can help break down your fear.
Once you’ve gotten used to stepping up and down, start adding some arm swings in as you step up. This can help improve the coordination you need to complete your first box jump!
Step three: broad jumps
You might have done broad jumps in my programs already, which means you’re one step closer to being a box jump master! With a broad jump, you are focusing on jumping forwards, rather than jumping up onto a raised surface.
Practising broad jumps can help you to coordinate the moves you need to safely make a box jump. This can help build your confidence before adding the height of the box into the equation. As you do your broad jump, try to focus on driving energy into your heels, using your arms to propel you forward and help you balance, and then aim to land softly.
Step four: tuck jumps
Tuck jumps can be a great exercise for teaching you how to land softly. As you work up to a full box jump, it’s important that you understand how to absorb the impact of a jump through your knees and ankles.
Tuck jumps are also an awesome way to improve your coordination and teach you the explosive movements you need for a box jump. Focus on really tucking your knees towards your chest and try to land softly.
Step five: box jumps
You are ready! Here it is, the moment you have been working towards. You know how to do everything you need for a box jump, now you just need to make the leap! Start with a small plyometric box, you don’t want to make your first jump too difficult — getting your form right is more important.
How to do a plyometric box jump:
- With the box in front of you, position your feet on the floor shoulder-width apart.
- Look straight ahead and bend at both the hips and knees, ensuring that your knees remain in line with your toes.
- Propel your body up and forward while drawing your knees into your chest, to land in squat position on top of the box.
- Push through your heels and find a standing position on top of the box.
- Carefully step backwards off the box one foot at a time to return to the starting position.
Once you’re back on the ground, give yourself a pat on the back for conquering your fear!
Some more tips for doing plyometric box jumps:
- Make sure you are jumping onto a box (or step) that is stable and has a non-slip surface. Soft boxes are great for first timers but some people prefer boxes without padding.
- Commit yourself to making the jump. Box jumps start in your mind.
- Remember: strong arms! Your arms help you to balance and to get the lift you need.
- Focus on your landing. You should be landing lightly and absorbing the impact. There shouldn’t be a lot of noise coming from your feet when you land.
Once you’ve done box jumps a few times, it will feel easier. You may even want to progress to higher jumps!
* Disclaimer: This blog post is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. The above information should not be used to diagnose, treat, or prevent any disease or medical condition. Please consult your doctor before making any changes to your diet, sleep methods, daily activity, or fitness routine. Sweat assumes no responsibility for any personal injury or damage sustained by any recommendations, opinions, or advice given in this article.