Plyometrics are one of the most well rounded forms of exercise. Though it may be unheard of due to the massive popularity of the strength training, lifting and running communities, it helps in building power, endurance, and agility, and has a primary emphasis on speed.
What are Plyometrics?
Plyometrics are explosive exercise that can help one develop more power, when incorporated in a workout routine. Power does not refer to strength but a combination of speed and strength. This helps every athlete, martial artist, and advanced fitness enthusiast to develop the speed, strength and reaction timing that helps them become successful in their fitness goals.
There are many plyometric exercises available for those who wish to try. Broad jumps, jump squats and Aztec push ups are some examples of good plyometric exercises that can be performed for 3-5 sets for 10 reps as part of a workout routine. Plyometrics have a reputation for being unsafe and possibly stressful for the joints due to the explosiveness. However, with the right warm up, mobility drills and avoiding excessive stress during exercise, one can be assured of no chances of injury.
Aztec Push up. (Source: YouTube/Vikas Choudhary)
Plyometrics may seem like the best workout as it helps in burning fat and building power. But just as there are two sides to a coin, plyometrics has some prerequisites that one should ensure before incorporating it as part of their routine. Though there are beginner routines available, high intensity training and explosive training should always be considered after being cleared by a medical professional.
Even after medical clearance, it is important to have a background in exercise before starting out into plyometrics. Clap push ups and Aztec push ups require a base level of strength, which is performing the regular push up. Even though the benefits of plyometrics are alluring, fitness has no shortcuts and one needs to develop the base strength before moving on to advanced variations.
Plyometric exercises are one of the fastest ways to burn fat and build speed and strength simultaneously. Though it has been a secret restricted to the best athletes, it is equally difficult to perform them. But just with patience in any form of fitness, it can yield progress. Due to its high intensity nature, it is recommended that one should rest the day after doing a high intensity workout and perform it no more than 2-3 times a week.