Plyometric training is an effective power training that helps people to improve their physical condition. In order to get maximum benefit from plyometric training it should be followed by strength training. This training provides the power to exert maximum force.
Mostly athletes practice plyometric training and it boost the reaction of an individual by powerful muscular contractions. There are eccentric (muscle lengthens) and concentric (muscle shortens) contractions and muscle develops maximum force by an eccentric contraction. This force generated can be utilized and increased only when an eccentric contraction is immediately followed by a concentric contraction within a very short time. This process is called stretch shortening cycle and is the basis of plyometric training.
There is lower body and upper body plyometric exercises and the lower body exercises are useful for players involved in athletics, football, rugby, hockey, basketball, sprinting etc. While upper body plyometric exercises helps to improve performance in basketball, tennis, volleyball, badminton, golf etc. Some plyometric exercises are given below.
Lower Body Plyometric Exercises
This is practiced by jumping down from a height and jumping up immediately so that the feet touch the ground only for a very short time and the exercise becomes more effective when this time of contact between feet and ground is as short as possible. This is a high impact exercise and the height of the drop can be adjusted according to the stamina of the person.
Other lower body plyometric exercises includes standing long jump, standing jump for height, standing hop, multiple jumps from standing such as bunny hops and bounds, bound/hop/bound/hop for about 30 meters etc.
Upper Body Plyometric Exercises
This exercise helps to improve the strength of the upper body and is done by lying down on the floor with face focusing upwards. Another person will then drop a medicine ball towards the chest of the practitioner who then catches and throws the ball back immediately.
Press Up and Hand Clap
This aids in improving the chest and arms of the practitioner and is done with a hand clap in between the press ups. When the hand reaches back the person should do a quick and explosive upward movement and hand clap and keep the time of contact between the hands and ground minimal.
Start the plyometric exercises with low intensity trainings and then gradually increase the intensity to get maximum efficiency from the training.