Spring is a superb time to take inventory of how your winter weight loss plan and coaching have progressed. Maybe your self-examination will reveal that your thighs, calves and buttocks are softer and sagging a bit greater than you need. Even if so at the moment, a tighter weight loss plan and centered assault on the decrease physique will flip issues round quite rapidly. Squat jumps are an effective way to start out this decrease physique evolution. They’ll generate muscle energy, enhance physique steadiness, agency the thighs, calves and buttocks, and burn energy within the course of. Additionally it is an ideal train should you can’t make it to the health club, as a result of you are able to do squat jumps even when there isn’t any health club in sight.
Muscle Construction and Perform
The squat leap entails many thigh, calf and hip muscular tissues, however solely the foremost ones shall be mentioned right here. The quadriceps femoris muscle group consists of 4 thigh muscular tissues.1 The vastus lateralis muscle covers the lateral a part of the femur bone of the thigh. The vastus medialis muscle is anchored to the medial a part of the femur. The vastus intermedius muscle is hooked up to the central, anterior a part of the femur. The muscle fibers from these three vasti muscular tissues connect to the quadriceps tendon. The rectus femoris begins on the hipbones on the iliac crest and above the hip joint and never on the femur.2 Its fibers prolong to the patellar tendon together with the three vastus muscular tissues to connect to the patella (knee cap). This tendon continues from the patella to the tibia bone of the decrease leg because the patellar ligament. Collectively, the three vasti and the rectus femoris prolong the leg on the knee.
The gluteus maximus is the foremost muscle of the buttocks.1 It extends the thigh if you find yourself leaping upwards from the squat place. The fibers of the gluteus medius muscle run between the ileum bone of the hip and the posterior a part of the femur bone of the thigh. It abducts the femur on the hip joint by shifting the femur laterally, away from the midline of the physique. The gluteus medius maintains physique steadiness throughout the takeoff and touchdown of squat jumps.
Collectively, the lengthy head of the biceps femoris, semimembranosus and semitendinosus muscular tissues are the hamstring muscular tissues that reside on the posterior thigh. These muscular tissues connect to the posterior sides of hip and pelvic bones.1 They prolong down the posterior facet of the femur bone to connect both on the medial facet of the tibia bone of the leg (semitendinosus), the medial facet of the superior a part of the tibia bone (semimembranosus) or the lateral facet of the tibia bone slightly below the knee (biceps femoris). Collectively, these muscular tissues flex the knee. Nevertheless, when the foot is on the bottom, the hamstrings prolong the hip joint, and due to this fact these muscular tissues are very energetic throughout the upwards leap in leap squats.
You must stretch your quadriceps and hamstrings and do a pair minutes of sunshine stationary biking earlier than starting this train.3 That is necessary as a result of squat jumps are quite explosive as you thrust upwards from the squat place, so the muscular tissues and joints ought to first be warmed up appropriately. As well as, your sneakers ought to have a great rubber sole so that you gained’t slip on the bench.
1. In case you have not achieved these earlier than, begin with a low bench that’s about 12 inches excessive.
2. Straddle the bench in order that one foot is on both facet of it. Your toes needs to be about shoulder-width aside.
3. Squat down till your knees are flexed to an angle of about 90 levels. It’s possible you’ll want to elevate your arms in entrance of you to close shoulder degree to enhance your steadiness throughout the jumps.
4. Explosively spring upwards. Convey each toes nearer collectively as you leap in order that each toes concurrently land on prime of the bench. Bend your knees to a 90-degree angle and squat when your toes hit the highest of the bench. The squat on the bench will enhance the work to your thighs and buttocks and it’ll additionally soak up the jarring forces which can be generated throughout the leap.
5. As soon as you’re on the bench, thrust upwards from the squat place and leap off the bench. Widen your stance in order that each toes hit the ground concurrently.
6. Instantly squat as your toes hit the ground. This can each soak up the leap downward and likewise put together you for the subsequent leap upwards.
7. Proceed for at least 15 repetitions however work as much as 25. Relaxation a few minute, after which repeat the set. You possibly can work as much as 3 units. Upon getting mastered this, choose a better bench (e.g., 18 inches) and step by step work as much as a bench that’s 24 inches in peak. Don’t fear, you’ll grasp the train rapidly4 and end up on the lookout for larger benches very quickly.
The relative diploma of muscle exercise differs among the many quadriceps muscular tissues throughout the leap. The strain within the vasti muscular tissues diminishes as you method the highest portion of the elevate (with the knees straightened). Conversely, the rectus femoris is much less energetic on the backside however turns into extra activated when the hip and knee are being prolonged. Because the gluteus maximus muscle and hamstring muscular tissues are robust extensors of the hip, they’re very energetic throughout the leap upwards.
It is a actually intensive train. The muscular tissues of your decrease physique shall be stretched below your body weight as you leap off the bench throughout every repetition,5 which implies your muscular tissues can turn out to be sore from this train. When achieved accurately, the squat leap generally is a nice complement to different weight coaching or cardio. Alternatively, squat jumps can work independently to successfully agency your decrease physique, burn lots of energy and offer you better leaping potential6 or simply carry a spring to your step.
1. Moore, KL and AF Dalley. Clinically Oriented Anatomy. Fourth version. Baltimore, Lippincott Williams & Williams, 1999; 531-546.
2. Waligora AC, Johanson NA, Hirsch BE. Medical anatomy of the quadriceps femoris and extensor equipment of the knee. Clin Orthop Relat Res 2009; 467: 3297-3306.
3. Pacheco L, Balius R, Aliste L et al. The acute results of various stretching workout routines on leap efficiency. J Power Cond Res 2011;25:2991-2998.
4. Randell AD, Cronin JB, Keogh JW et al. Reliability of efficiency velocity for leap squats below suggestions and nonfeedback situations. J Power Cond Res 2011;25:3514-3518.
5. Foure A, Nordez A, Cornu C. Results of plyometric coaching on passive stiffness of gastrocnemii muscular tissues and Achilles tendon. Eur J Appl Physiol 2011; in press.
6. Ziv, G , Lidor, R 2009. Vertical leap in feminine and male basketball players-A overview of observational and experimental research. J Sci Med Sport 2010;13, 332-339, 2010.