Plyometrics are an exercise designed to increase speed and power, and these are areas that require development in youth athletes. Plyometrics force the muscles to use as much force in as short a time as possible, and the explosiveness required in sports like football, soccer, volleyball, etc., can be honed by using plyometric exercises. Adding plyometrics to an athlete's offseason workout can bring his game to another level. Here are some tips and exercises if you want to incorporate plyometrics into your offseason football workout.

Warm Up

It’s important you warm up previous to engaging in plyometric exercises. You can do the warm up your coach would normally give you, or just incorporate movement and dynamic stretching. This gets the body ready for the motions used in sports and increases the body’s temperature, thus loosening up the muscles.

Squat Jump

Stand in place with your feet about shoulder width apart. Go down into a squat, and jump straight up as high as possible. When you come back down, go into a squat position and immediately jump up again. If these become too easy for you, you can also do this exercise with weight. This exercise strengthens the leg muscles that generate forward and upward power in an athlete.

Power Skip

This exercise is done by making a skipping motion. Move forward on one foot and bring the knee of the other leg up to your chest. Skip as high as you can. When you land, you should immediately skip forward with the other leg. This exercise forces you to create power with each leg individually.

Pushups

Do pushups using a ball. To make it more difficult, try clapping after every pushup or switching hands if you’re strong enough. 

Box Jumps

Get a box that you can jump over for this exercise.

Using a box forces you to reach the same height consistently, whether you are fatiguing or not.

There are a few varieties of this exercise. Stand behind the box and jump on to it landing in a squatting position. Then step back down to your original position and repeat. This develops body control and strengthens your leg muscles. To perform another box jump, stand on one side of the box. Jump laterally onto the box landing in a squatting position. Then step down on the other side and jump up again.

Doing these exercises will prepare any athlete for the explosiveness needed for their upcoming season. Adding plyometrics to your workout routine will definitely bring your game to another level!

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