Parkour is an inventive way to train. It exercises both your mind and your physical body. Parkour courses are frequently set in urban settings, using obstacles in a changing environment. It involves mastering skills like jumping off walls and leaping over objects. Working out using the best plyometric exercises, can help prepare you for these challenges.
You might scale a hill, tumble, or navigate a difficult series of leaps and lunges. Plyometric exercises focus on short bursts using maximum muscle exertion. They are a great way to train for Parkour. Here are the ten best plyometric exercises to improve your Parkour technique.
1: The Lunge
You never know what type of obstacle you’ll have to tackle on a Parkour course. Sometimes you may find you need to be able to lunge over something. If you’re not prepared to exert the energy required to lunge over obstacles, it will slow you down. Plyometric lunges are an excellent way to prepare for these types of hurdles.
The best plyometric exercises to improve this aspect of Parkour are forward and reverse lunges. This builds strength in your legs to handle the unexpected need to leap forward and brace yourself. This is one of the best plyometric exercises to assure that you can safely perform these types of maneuvers.
2: Plyo Lateral Lunge
Lunging forward and backward is an essential part of navigating a Parkour course, but lateral and sideways lunges are also essential. As often as you leap forward, you will need to jump from side to side far more often. When considering the best plyometric exercise that will help Parkour runners, the plyometric lateral lunge is indispensable.
This motion is not only a strenuous workout; it helps improve your lateral agility. Agility is a critical part of successfully attacking a Parkour course. When you improve your agility, you will be able to jump from side to side with less effort and reduce your chance of injury. The ultimate objective of Plyo lateral lunges is to develop both agility and increase your confidence.
3: Alternating Lunge Jumps
Lunging and jumping are two of the most frequently required skills to navigate a Parkour course. Each of these different types of lunging exercises utilizes a different set of muscles and helps to improve your Parkour technique. This might be listed as a lunge. Still, these all produce a different level of ability and use different muscle groups.
The best plyometric exercises build on one another. Alternating lunge jumps is the next type of maneuver that is important to Parkour. This is a stationary exercise where you leap as high as possible, keeping your landing knee over your ankle, alternating the leg you land on.
You should practice these leaps progressively faster. It is critical to remain on the ball of your foot for stability, plus allowing for faster leaps. As you perform all plyometric leaps and lunges, focus on keeping your core tight.
4: The Frog Squat Jump
This is one of the best plyometric exercises to improve your Parkour technique, plus it’s really fun. You must start with a solid base, feet aligned and a little wider than shoulder width. Make sure your toes are turned slightly outward to help provide a stable base. This exercise is best done barefoot or with five fingers shoes.
You’re going to explode upward like a frog, striving to get as high off the ground as possible. You want to make certain you land on the balls of your feet. This is critical so you can be prepared for the next jump, or establish firm footing. When you practice the frog squat jump, focus on height and proper landing technique.
5: The Plyo Step-Up
Once you begin to develop the power in your thighs, you can graduate to maneuvers that are more difficult. Another of the best plyometric exercises for Parkour is the Plyo step-up. This uses the same thigh muscles that you have strengthened with lunges, plus the good balance practiced in the frog squat jump.
The Plyo step-up is exactly what it indicates. You can use aerobics blocks, a wall, or sturdy table. Anything with a flat surface will work, as long as you can safely step up and balance yourself. Practice feeling the power it takes to drive up. Make sure you stand erect after each repetition to help develop good balance. Alternate legs and as you become more accomplished, increase the height of the barrier.
6: The Plant Plyos
There are going to be walls and other obstacles in your path along most Parkour courses. You just never know when you’re going to be required to get over a railing or short wall. The Plant Plyos is a maneuver designed to strengthen the leg muscles that you need to jump these types of obstacles. The Plant Plyos exercise builds on the skills practiced in the frog squat jump.
One nice thing about the Plant Plyos is you can use anything sturdy as a barrier, such as a picnic table. You don’t necessarily need to make it over, just practice landing firmly on top. You can be inventive when devising a barrier to use for this type of exercise. It is definitely one of the best plyometric exercises for handling imposing obstacles with ease.
7: Judo Roll with Jump Up
Since many of the Parkour maneuvers will involve jumping, lunging and circumventing obstacles, you have to assume you could fall occasionally. Being able to roll properly and recover quickly is important. One of the best plyometric exercises to perfect this ability is the Judo roll with jump up. It is very similar to the standing jump and roll maneuver used in aerobics classes.
You’re going to start this exercise on your back, lying face up. Use your abdominal muscle, not your arms to rock backward and roll onto your feet. As soon as you land, jump up as high as you can and land back on a solid base. You should practice squatting and rolling back to the starting position without using your hands. You will improve agility and the ability to roll properly, helping to prevent injury if you fall.
8: Kneeling Squat Jump
You should continue to focus exercises that work on getting off the ground. The kneeling squat jump is another in the series of best plyometric exercises to help your Parkour skills. Instead of landing flat on your back, this exercise assumes you have landed on your knees. While you will instinctively use your hands to break any fall, try not to use them during these types of exercises.
From a kneeling position, core tight, body straight with your shoulders back, practice rocking slightly and leaping to your feet. This advanced exercise requires a mastery of the lunge, frog squat and a strong core. There is a reason why you practice this exercise without using your hands. When you’re on a Parkour course, you may not have any firm place to use them.
9: Full-Body Plyometric Push-Up
Most of the skills you need to navigate a Parkour course involve leg strength. Leaping, lunging and jumping are critical. However, keeping your upper body ready is also essential. The full-body push-up is another of the best plyometric exercises to improve your Parkour skills. Since Parkour is not a normal type of exercise, neither is the full-body push-up.
The concepts behind Parkour situations where you’ll need upper body strength involve getting you off the ground. The plyometric push-up helps you develop this skill. It is often referred to as the Marine Corps push-up. This is the first of two of the best plyometric exercises to develop upper body strength for Parkour challenges.
You establish a normal push-up position, keeping your core tight. Then drive yourself upward with enough force from your arms to leave the ground. Land back and repeat as many times as you can. You can add a twist to this exercise, by putting crossing your legs at the ankle.
10: Plyometric Push-Up to Squat
You want to do more than just get off the ground; you want to prepare to immediately begin moving forward again. This final skill in the list of the best plyometric exercises to improve your Parkour technique blends multiple exercises into one. You will need to have a strong squat jump and a powerful push-up to complete the advanced push-up squat.
From the push-up position, drive your upper body off the ground and pull your legs underneath your body. You will land in a squatted position and then leap into the frog squat jump. If you think this is difficult, you are correct. As with all the exercises you try, work up slowly until you are comfortable with your skill level.
Parkour courses are challenging. If you want to be successful, you’ll need to exercise in a way that improves your technique. These are 10 of the best plyometric exercises to help you achieve that goal. You start simple and work up gradually. Once you master all ten, you can incorporate each one as part of a rigorous training regimen that will help you navigate any challenge on a Parkour course.