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Tuck Jump Plyos

Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 10.53.41 AMTuck jumps are one of the best ways to develop explosive power using only your body weight.  Essentially, they are plyometric squats, thus incorporate all of the benefits of a squat (using most of the large muscles of your body and your core) but also adding explosive power to it to get your body off the ground.

Incorporating tuck jumps into your routine will improve the power of your running and cycling, and will help to minimize your ground contact when running.  After a few weeks of doing this exercise you will likely feel more “springy” on the ground when running as you improve your lower leg elastic strength.

Keep in mind that plyometrics are very stressful on the knees and ankles.  Vertical jumps are also stressful on your lower back and legs, so make sure you are healthy before you incorporate this kind of training.  You will want to use a soft surface to do these drills – avoid pavement and concrete at all times.   Make sure you have warmed up well before you start any plyometrics as it is easy to injure yourself if your body is not ready for explosive movements.  At least a ten or fifteen minute jog and some dynamic stretches is a good place to start.

To build up to the tuck jump series, start with pogo stick on the ground, essentially bouncing with very short hops on the ankles.  Once you are sure you can do this and recovery quickly you can progress to higher jumps.  You may want to limit the number of repetitions you start with as even 20 seconds is a good start.  You can also keep a three bounce rhythm for the whole thirty seconds.  Build up slowly as a little of this work goes a very long way.

The tuck jump plyometric series:

Stand with good posture feet shoulder width apart and knees slightly bent.

Do two small hops and on the third descend into a full squat position.  When at the bottom of the squat, explode straight up bringing your knees toward your chest while in midair.  You can attempt to grasp your knees quickly with your arms.  Try to get your thighs to your torso.

Release down, controlling the landing and quickly move back into two more hops before repeating the jump.  The idea is to absolutely minimize your ground contact time.

After 10 jumps every three hops, then do a full tuck jump after every one hop.  This should take exactly 30 seconds jumping high every three hops for ten repeats and then jumping high every two hops for ten repeats.  Build up to three sets with one minute between sets.

You can repeat this up to twice per week.

[youtube height=”480″ width=”640″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TZY4Zb_bwM4