Science

Plyometric training

Plyometric training is a reactive bounce training combined with dynamic movements to the right and left (1) and is relatively easy to train. There are three different exercise variations – the Jumps, Hops and Bounds.

This form of training makes use of the stretch shortening cycle (2): in the eccentric movement the muscle stretches and in the concentric phase the muscle contracts from the maximum stretch. 

In the concentric movement, the central nervous system is involved, as the concentric movement is composed of an unconscious reflex (neural process) and a conscious contraction of the muscles. This improves the neuronal innervation of the muscles and mainly the fast muscle fibres are activated and trained (1).

The training offers an all-in-one solution for coordination, strength, stability and mobility (3, 4). In addition to improved reactivity and speed, the ligaments and tendons become more stable and the large muscle groups in the lower body become stronger (2, 5).

Such plyometric training should be done about 1-2 per week. However, a thorough warm-up phase is necessary before this to prevent injuries. The volume is reflected in the number of ground contacts after each jump and the intensity is reflected in the speed of execution. 

The following repetitions are recommended:

  • Beginners: 60 – 90 ground contacts 
  • Advanced: 90 – 120 ground contacts
  • Pros > 120 ground contacts

After such a session, you should give yourself 48 hours to recover.

Sources:

  1. Weineck, J. (2010). Optimales Training: Leistungsphysiologische Trainingslehre unter besonderer Berücksichtigung des Kinder-und Jugendtrainings. Spitta Verlag GmbH & Co. KG: Balingen.
  2. Keiner, M., Sander, A., Wirth, K., & Schmidtbleicher, D. (2012). Ergänzendes Krafttraining im Nachwuchsleistungssport. Schweizerische Zeitschrift für Sportmedizin und Sporttraumatologie, 60(1), 8-13.
  3. Bobbert, M. F., Gerritsen, K. G., Litjens, M. C., & Van Soest, A. J. (1996). Why is countermovement jump height greater than squat jump height?. Medicine and science in sports and exercise, 28, 1402-1412.
  4. Holcomb, W. R., Lander, J. E., Rutland, R. M., & Wilson, G. D. (1996). The Effectiveness of a Modified Plyometric Program on Power and the Vertical Jump. The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, 10(2), 89-92.
  5. Mirzaei, B., Asghar Norasteh, A., Saez de Villarreal, E., & Asadi, A. (2014). Effects of six weeks of depth jump vs. Countermovement jump training on sand on muscle soreness and performance. Kinesiology, 46(1), 97-108.

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