Monday, January 9, 2012

Good Plyometric Exercises for Basketball Players

Plyometric exercises are characterized by quick, explosive movements that can improve basketball performance. For a basketball player, these movements resemble the jumping patterns used during a game. You can perform plyometric exercises with a variety of equipment during a strength and conditioning program. Plyometric box exercises, however, provide a versatile training tool for developing lower body strength, speed and power.
Boxes designed for plyometric exercises vary in height to accommodate different ability levels and exercises. For example, a 12-inch box is designed for low-intensity exercises and beginners, while a 24-inch box is designed for high-intensity exercises or elite athletes. You can also add additional equipment such as resistance bands or weighted vests to vary the intensity level for elite athletes.
Plyometric box exercises are generally split into two categories -- jumps and hops. Jumps are exercises in which you jump and land with both feet, while hops are exercises where you jump and land with only one foot. Because hops involve jumping off of only one foot, they require a significant amount of strength and stability. The jumps and hops are also split into vertical or lateral exercises that resemble different movement patterns used during the game. For example, basic box jumps improve vertical jumping ability, and lateral box jumps improve lateral agility.
Plyometric box exercises for basketball players start with beginner level exercises and progress to intermediate and advanced exercises. High-intensity exercises such as depth jumps must only be performed by advanced athletes. An athlete must be able to squat 1.5 times his body weight before performing advanced exercises. Most athletes should complete eight to 12 weeks of periodized resistance training to build adequate strength levels before performing plyometric box exercises.
After building a solid foundation of strength and stability, you can include plyometric box exercises in your strength and conditioning program two to three days per week while allowing your body to rest at least 48 to 72 hours between workouts. Start the workout with low intensity exercises before performing high intensity exercises and one to three minutes of recovery between sets. Limit the number of total repetitions to 100 jumps per workout.

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