3 Box or Park Bench Exercises to Activate your Lower Body Muscles
How do I build my lower body muscles?
Plyometric exercises are powerful aerobic exercises that can be used to increase your speed, endurance, and strength. They involve you having to exert your muscles to their maximum potential for a short period of time. These three exercises are perfect for people wishing to improve their fitness! Add these exercises to your workout routine and work up to them gradually.
Here are 3 box or park bench exercises that you can do at home or outside! For a more detailed explanation of each exercise, check out our YouTube video here or below!
Drop Jumps & Hop
This is a great exercise for cardio, explosive strength & to increase your vertical jump.
- Choose a box where you are safe to jump up and down on at least 10 times
- Using a 2-foot hop, jump up onto the box. Emphasize landing softly on your toes
- Immediately as you touch the surface of the box, you’ll want to hop (forward) back down to the ground
- Do a 180 degree hop on the spot and repeat your hops
- It’s like the game “hot lava”. You want to spend as little time as possible on the ground.
- If you don’t have a box, you can also do this exercise by jumping over an object.
- To increase the difficulty, you can choose a larger box, or increase the distance you are away from the box.
- Please be careful as you can easily trip when you start getting tired – do at your own risk!
Copenhagen Side Plank
- This is an advanced plank exercise, make sure you’re safe doing a regular side plank correctly before attempting this exercise.
- If you don’t have a plyo box, a sturdy chair will do
- Start by assuming your side plank position so that your elbow is directly below your shoulder
- Place your top foot on the box and the bottom foot on the ground directly below
- Get up into the side plank position
- While holding the plank position, bring your lower foot up towards the top of the box
- To make sure you’re engaging your glutes (and not your hip flexor) the lower leg should be slightly behind the top leg
Bulgarian Split Squat
- Place your back foot on the box
- I prefer to have my toes on the box, but some people prefer the top of their shoe (the laces) on the box. It’s really a personal preference, but I find from my toes is a better “power” position to generate better force production.
- Your front leg should be far enough in front of you so that when you lunge down, your front knee does NOT cross over your toes.
- Your feet should be shoulder-width apart so that you’ve got a good base of support and don’t feel that you’re going to lose your balance and fall over.
- I like to have slightly more weight on my back foot to empathize my back quadricep muscle.
- Lower your back knee towards the ground, slowly and in control. Don’t bounce. Your movement should be deliberate and intentional.
- Pause a the bottom of the movement (before your knee touches the ground)
- Slowly return to starting position
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