T Nation

Plyo question for Coach Davies or others

This question is about landing during a plyo drill…do you land on a flat foot or on the ball of your foot? Which enhances the benefits of the exercise the most. Second question…when performing a jump squat do you land on the full foot or on the ball of your foot and then bring the heal down?..Thanks to all who can answer.

Generally speaking, on vertical type jumping, you should land on the ground on the ball of your foot, heel should not touch. On horizontal type training, the landing is more heel-to-toe. Again this is a generalization. Whats most important is that you keep the consistant the ground contact time and your body shape on landing and in flight. In faith, Coach Stronski

There are several ways to perform the jump squat. Generally speaking, if you are starting from a pause each time, you’ll land on the balls of your feet, but your heels will be on the floor at the start. If you are performing them with no pause, the heels shouldn’t touch the floor. As a teaching point, when your feet leave the floor, there must be a consistant pattern of landing and jumping. Your body shape shouldn’t change and you must land in the same spot on each rep. If you are not, the exercise may be too advanced and you are setting yourself up for injury. In faith, Coach Stronski.

Stronsky is right. Plyometric drills are designed to improve the capacity to use the stretch-reflex. To do so optimally the heels must not come in contact with the ground. Landing with the heels on the ground increase stretch-reflex dissipation (you lose some of the stretch-reflex potentiation).

There are indeed several types of jump squats.

The two major categories are 1) stretch-reflex jump squats and 2) starting strength jump squats. These are namded according to their objective.

The stretch-reflex jump squats targets the utilization of the stretch-reflex during a powerfull contraction. So they are executed with minimal ground contact time (jump up as soon as you land) and the heels should not touch the ground. Generally a very light weight is used for these.

Starting-strength jump squats have the main objective of increasing the rate of force development at the start of a movement. You can take your time between each jump and the way you land is secondary, what’s important is that you jump as high as possible with each rep. A variation of these are static jump squats: You start in a static position (knee bend to a sport-specific position) and on a signal (visual or auditive dpending on your sport) you jump up as high as possible.