The Plyometric Circuit

The Plyometric Circuit

Boost your strength, improve your endurance, and get more explosive with this ten minute plyometric circuit.

Muscle strength training and muscle endurance training are important aspects of one’s training program. Possessing powerful legs that can get you through the rigors of a long season are vital not only to reducing your risk of injury, but also to giving you an edge later in the game when your opponents are dragging. The addition of a plyometric circuit to your training program can help you achieve these goals. While I use this program (that lasts ten minutes max) at the beginning of workouts, it can be done on off days or as a high intensity substitute for steady state cardio (when 20 minutes on the treadmill starts getting old) if your sole concern is looking better.

Because nobody wants to go into the weight room and waste time, maximizing your time spent there should be the goal. The plyometirc leg circuit is designed to provide a strength-endurance workout in the shortest amount of time possible. So while your legs may start to burn half-way through, the pain will only be temporary. Now what are the components of the plyometric leg circuit? Please see the list below:

 

Parallel squat – Basic body weight squats done as quickly as possible. (20 total)

Dynamic lunges
– Quick body weight lunges. Complete 10 lunges with one leg before proceeding to the next one. (20 total)

Single leg explosive jumps
– Quick jumps off of a box that’s roughly 6”–8” high. Complete 10 jumps with one leg before proceeding to the next one. (20 total)

Squat jumps
– Standard prisoner squats done with your hands behind your head (10 total)

High school or novice lifters (less than 1 yr experience) should begin this circuit by performing 3 sets with at least 1-minute of rest between the sets. The progression can be done two ways. The first is to increase the number of sets of the circuit until the maximum of 5 rounds are achieved. The second way is to decrease the rest time between the sets. A typical high school program includes 3 sets of the plyometic circuit with 1 minute of rest between sets the first week, with subsequent weeks decreasing the rest time while slowly increasing sets. So, the second week may be the same number of sets (3), but with 45 seconds rest between the sets.

College and more experienced lifters follow the same general progression as high school or novice lifters, but may start with a higher number of sets within the plyometic circuit (i.e. 4 sets) or less rest between sets (i.e. 45 or 30 seconds). So, the first week you may do 4 sets with 1-minute rest, while the second and third weeks will drop the rest by 15 seconds (each week). Or, instead of dropping the rest periods, you can increase the sets to 5 by the second or third week.

In the off-season, this workout can be done 2 times per week. In-season the workout should be done no more than once a week. Remember, the off-season is when we get stronger, and the in-season is when we maintain all our hard work. Lastly, listen to your body and lift safely so you can have a productive season. Your opponents won’t thank you for it!

To maximize your performance when doing the plyometric circuit above, 1R would recommend the following supplements:

  1. Optimum Nutrition Threshold Beta-Alanine - Will help increase your workout capacity which will improve performance and strength during high intensity training
  2. BSN Amino X - This preworkout supplement will increase muscle endurance and protein synthesis, while giving you with the needed push to take your workouts, and results, to the next level
  3. Cytosport Creatine - By increasing your body's ATP production creatine will help you become more explosive, more powerful, and more athletic when taken before or after workouts
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About the Author

Jon currently works as the Head Athletic Trainer at Menlo School in Atherton, CA. Along with his responsibilities at Menlo School, he has taught Anatomy of Human Movement at Stanford, Kinesiology at Santa Clara University, Rehabilitation and Exercise classes at San Jose State University,and designs Strength and Conditioning programs for high school, college, and professional athletes. After receiving his BA and MS from McDaniel College in Physical Education and Exercise Science, he worked with high schools, Division I and III colleges, and professional and Olympic teams, performing athletic training, rehabilitation, and sports medicine services. His previous job before joining Menlo School was at the Riekes Center for Human Enhancement as their Director of Athletics. In addition, Jon is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in education from the University of San Francisco in Learning and Instruction. Jon is originally from Baltimore and a huge Orioles Fan. When he's not at Menlo School, he loves to spend time with his wife Lisa and two dogs, Tank and Mocha.