What Are Broad Jumps
Broad jumps are an explosive movement that can be used to work on strength, power, coordination, and cardiovascular fitness. It’s an advanced variation of the squat jump which recruits the lower body muscles including the glutes, hamstrings, quads, and calves, and also works muscles in the upper body and arms.
The broad jump involves squatting down and then jumping as far forward as possible while landing in the bottom of the squat position. As a dynamic exercise, this movement requires a lot of energy and can improve explosive movements and reaction times, so it’s an ideal move for those wanting to improve sports performance.
Commonly Asked Questions On Broad Jumps
The best way to improve your broad jump is by incorporating lower body exercises, jumping exercises, and single leg movements into your training. Gaining strength in the lower body through progressively overloading leg exercises will help with the strength and power needed to propel through a broad jump.
Single leg broad jumps are a great way to improve your bilateral broad jumps. While you’ll be unable to jump with much power on a single leg, you should see a difference in power and distance when returning to broad jumps.
The Standing Long Jump Test, which is a fitness test used by some sports disciplines, states that a distance of 231cm or over is above average for males, and 181cm or over as above average for females, however factors like height and weight, as well as strength, will affect how far you can broad jump.
If you’re new to broad jumps, it’s better to focus on keeping correct form and measuring how far you can jump, and then aim to improve this.
Broad jumps are an energy intensive exercise that involves power, coordination, and strength, all which can carry over to improvements in speed. The exercise also increases heart rate and works the cardiovascular system which can help with speed too.
Broad Jump Tips
Broad jumps are a high energy, high impact exercise that place greater pressure on the knees and hips compared to other squat variations. If you are returning from an injury or prone to pain in these areas, we’d recommend opting for a different squat variation or modifying your broad jump by coming up onto the balls of your feet instead of jumping into the air.
If you’re new to squats, work on perfecting the bodyweight squat or goblet squat to master form and build muscle as this will help to protect the joints and allow you to perform broad jumps with strength and power.
How To Do Broad Jumps
Stand tall and adopt a shoulder width stance. This foot positioning is the most powerful position to jump from.
Begin to squat down by pushing your hips back while bending at the knee. Make sure to push your knees outwards as you bend as this prevents the knees caving inwards.
As your thighs reach parallel with the floor, swing your arms back and then forward to create momentum. At the same time, push through both feet and propel yourself forward. The more power you push with, the further you will go.
Bend your knees as you descend so that you land in the bottom of the squat position.
Return to standing by pushing the ground away with both feet, making sure to drive through the entire foot, not just the heels.
As you stand tall, make sure to keep your knees slightly bent to avoid locking out the legs. Lightly squeeze the glutes but avoid pushing your hips forward as this can strain the lower back.
If you’re not sure if any of the above exercises are suitable for you, please consult your doctor before you start it. Need guidance on how to perform the exercise? Ask a personal trainer at your gym.