Hey guys, I’ve ran into a problem lately. Whenever I do burpees, I get knee pain. Now that I think of it, for some reason I’ve never been able to absorb impact properly from jumping. In basketball, skateboarding, whatever I did when I was younger, I always felt awkward landing. So, my question is twofold :
is there some physiological problem with people that causes them to not be able to absorb impact off of a jump?
What is the proper technique for absorbing impact after a jump?
Might be way off base here, but jumping, while great exercise, is not nearly as important as landing properly, since most all injuries from jumps occur of (bad) landings.
For the burpee, you:
- do a pushup
- tuck your knees up – don’t hop much. The power comes from your abs doing and explosive movement
- jump up
- land on the balls of your feet do not stop and as you go down to a crouch, use your legs to decelerate you smoothly. Good way to practice this is trying to be as silent as possible.
- rock up on your arms, stomp both feet out again (yep, just like a jump) and you are ready for the next one.
Problem I see with a lot of people is that when they do it with a jump, they come to a full stop on the landing rather than practicing absorbing the impact. Add in the jump gradually. Start by doing these with no jump (just stand up) then when you think you have it, jump 1/2 inch and increase over the course of a few workouts. Knee pain probably means your hips are not absorbing the impact from the landing right and the knees are taking a beating trying to correct it. Since good landing is mostly a timing issue, you should practice the form for this and treat the landing as a skill to acquire rather than just a conditioning move.
If you want a great, knee friendly variation, try burps, which are burpees without coming up. A lot like double mountain climbers. Use your abs/psoas on the tuck and your hamstrings (like a “reverse hyper”) on the extension. You should really feel these the next day.
Edit: I almost forgot. How many of these are you doing? If you are doing high volumes then a mat might be a good thing to use. This isn’t an issue until you get into the 100’s range for reps during a workout. Issue here again is that when fatigue sets in, timing goes and you start tacking up the slack. Since I am a martial artist, part of the training is still trying to keep on slogging when exhausted.