You often hear coaches, parents, and the media talk about how “explosive” an athlete is. While some folks are born with natural explosiveness, most athletes need to spend time developing this valuable skill. Strength coaches all agree that development of explosiveness (AKA – power), is important for athletes in almost all sports.
So how do you develop power? One common method is to use the Olympic Weightlifting movements, the clean and jerk and the snatch. While each of these lifts is an excellent way to develop power, they are very technical lifts that require a large amount of instruction. In certain situations they are ideal to use, but not all. If you have athletes that or inexperienced lifters or if safety is an issue, then you may have to find other alternatives to develop power in your athletes.
So what can you do if Olympic lifts aren’t ideal to use? There are several options. This post will look at the various types of jumps that can be used. Part 2 will explore various medicine ball exercises.
- Broad Jumps
- Squat Jumps
- Box Jumps
- Tuck Jumps
These jumps are listed in order from simple to most complex. Anytime that you introduce one of the exercises, make sure to properly teach it and be a stickler about technique, especially on the landings.
Sets & Reps
Since the development of power generally involves all out effort on each rep, it is best to keep reps low for each set. I like using sets of 5. If you are only using one of these exercises for power development, you should use 3-5 sets. If you are using several types of jumps in a session, Try not to go over 10 total sets. This will allow your athletes to have plenty of energy left for the remainder of the training session.