Box jumps spark cardio conditioning, increases bone density, and helps you keep your balance and coordination as you age. Box jumps can also be done anywhere.

Box Jumps: why take the leap?

Though studies have shown bone mass density is impacted when the magnitude, rate, and frequency of muscle strain occurs, and exercises such as weightlifting, tennis, and running respectively fall into these categories, there is only one movement that fulfills all three: jumping.

Burn, Baby, Burn

Jumping burns significantly more calories than walking (800 to 1,000/hourly versus 200 to 300/hourly) while also increasing your strength and muscle tone. And in most cases, you use nearly every muscle in your legs which blasts fat and torches calories.

Keep Calm and Start Small

Start small with step-ups, as they improve your range of motion and strength, but recognize they are not your end goal.

Once you’re ready to jump, you’ll need a plyometric box or sturdy elevated surface (a stack of mats or a step can do the trick) — then follow these steps: – Stand in front of the box with your feet shoulder-width apart, bend into a quarter squat and swing your arms back then forward as you explode off the ground. – Land softly, then straighten your legs while standing atop the box. – Jump (or step) back down, depending on your comfort level.

The height of your jump box will depend on your current fitness level, but consider starting at 12 to 16 inches high. Once you have mastered box jumps, attempt 20 inches consistently for greatest benefit.

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