Strength Training for Yogis: Jump to Build Easy Power

Practicing jumping outside of yoga will make the small jumps in your yoga practice lighter and easier.

In yoga you practice stillness in order to find balance between strength and ease. The only practice of jumping is to the top of the mat. But understanding how to jump will allow you to access your explosive power and open your mind to new movement. Practicing jumping outside of yoga will make the small jumps in your yoga practice lighter and easier.

5 Points of Powerful Jumping

In previous articles, I touched on ways to increase strength in your legs through squats and deadlifts. Jumping takes you to the next level. If you’re not used to jumping, it is good to start low and build up. If you’re not comfortable with jumping, box step ups are a great alternative. Just remember to alternate steps.

Box step-ups are a great starting progession towards box jumps.

When you approach something you want to jump onto, you already have some idea as to whether or not you can make the jump. But most of the time, you can jump higher than you might think. So don’t be afraid to bump up your jumping height as you progress.

Here are five points of performance for powerful jumping:

  1. Start with your feet under your hips.
  2. Swing your arms back, and as you jump, think about reaching your head to the ceiling.
  3. Look at the object you’re jumping onto. As you jump, swing your arms to give you more lift.
  4. Keep your chest tall as your draw your knees up.
  5. Land in a slightly wider stance. Step or gently jump down.

Jump Rope: Double Unders

Throughout this series we have spent a little time working on our jump rope skills. Now it’s time to try double-unders. This means that the rope goes around twice for each jump. It is a skill you should practice regularly.

Here are five points of performance for consistent double-unders:

  1. As you begin to jump rope, find a sustainable rhythm.
  2. Keep your elbows in and or hands slightly forward.
  3. Start jumping higher. When you’re ready, flicking from the wrist, try to whip the jump rope around twice for each jump.
  4. Stay relaxed.
  5. Don’t give up.

3 Workouts to Build Jumping Power

So how do we incorporate jumping into our weekly yoga routine? Below are three workouts that can be done at the gym. They require minimal equipment and only 15-45 minutes of your time, depending on which one you choose.

Box Jumps

Before you begin, here are a few considerations for the following three workouts:

  • Box Jump Test: The workouts listed below call for a 24-inch box for men and 20-inch box for women. Before you start the workout, make sure the height of the box is appropriate. If you’re not 100 percent sure you can clear the box multiple times, start with a lower box.
  • Box Jump Height: The height of the box can always be modified. Stack weight plates or find a shorter box if necessary.
  • Box Step Ups: Use these as an alernative if required, to help progress you to box jumps.

Warm Up:

  • 400 meter run
  • 5 sun salutations
  • 10 squats
  • 10 jumping squats
  • 200 single unders

Workout #1

5-7 minutes of double-under skill work

15 minute AMRAP (as many rounds as possible)

  • 7 burpees
  • 10 kettlebell deadlifts
  • 14 box jumps- 24inch/20inch

Pick a weight for the deadlift that is challenging but that you can do all 10 reps unbroken

Workout #2

Broad jump skill work

  • Use the technique from box jumps and apply it to this movement. Strive for length.

100 meter broad jump

  • Every 6 jumps, do 10 squats

For time

  • 400 meter run
  • 50 burpee pull ups
  • 400 meter run

Workout #3

10 minute EMOM (every minute on the minute)

  • 7 jumping squats

10 minute AMRAP (as many rounds as possible)

  • 8 box jumps
  • 16 sit ups
  • 8 burpees

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Photo courtesy of Stephanie Ring