Principles of Plyometrics

Plyometric training has been used, and will continue to be used, in varying degrees for all athletes for sport or occupation. The intensity levels, types, and volumes may change based upon your stage in life and goals, but it is an important training element that should not be left out.


BYFO-X_18 (Photo credit: USAG Vicenza)

Generally it is not exactly an issue of me seeing it left out of the programming.  When I witness athletes doing ‘their thing’ they love jumping on boxes and bounding around the field… just like the last youtube video they watched or xfit wod showed them (you).

What they most often miss are the training parameters that maximize the benefits of these movements and minimize the potential negatives.

When I’m working directly with the athletes we generally perform plyometric exercises 1-2 days per week near the beginning of the session and of a reasonable quantity.

  • Why the beginning… because you’re fresh.
  • Why reasonable quantity… because we want benefit of maximal efforts

Plyometric training utilizes the stretch shortening cycle and an energy system that is short lived and requires greater rest to be ready to go again.  (more on this in the Fit Pro Blog “Plyometrics with Your Athletes“.   Number of repetitions (generally low per set), rest between each set, and rest between plyo training days is very important.

It’s not just about getting sweaty!

Hundreds of box jumps is counter productive to the athletes that thinks they will jump higher or run fast for the effort.  There is a great deal of strategy that goes into this type of training.

Be smart in your training.  Ask and listen to your strength coach as they likely know more than the man in spandex on youtube.

International Youth Conditioning Association has a great and simple post on plyometric training outlines. Review that as well and you’ll benefit your game through better training.

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  1. Pingback: Plyometric Training Gone Awry | Sport Conditioning

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