The Alternate Staggered Squat Jump is a high-intensity plyometric exercise that targets several muscle groups, primarily in the lower body.
This workout exercise demands coordination, agility, and explosive power, which are vital for athletic performance.
Army PRT Staggered Squat Jump Exercise 10
The alternate staggered squat jump is the final exercise in Conditioning Drill 3. This exercise occurs at the end of CD3 and, therefore, at the end of most PRT sessions and requires advanced levels of movement skill and anaerobic endurance. Ten repetitions of this exercise, following on from its predecessor, Conditioning Drill 3 exercises, will be a true test of a soldier’s grit.
Here is a breakdown of the exercise as it would be conducted in a formation at a slow cadence
- This exercise develops balance and explosive strength in the legs.
- Staggered stance with the left leg back and arms at the sides; the trunk is generally straight but tilted slightly forward.
- On Count 1, Squat and touch the ground between the legs with the fingertips of the left hand. Jump forcefully into the air, switching legs in mid-air to land with the right leg back and arms at the sides.
- On Count 2, Squat and touch the ground between the legs with the fingertips of the right hand. Jump forcefully into the air, switching legs in mid-air to land with the left leg back and arms at the sides.
- On Count 3, Repeat count 1.
- On Count 4, Repeat count two and return to the starting position.
- At the starting position, tighten the abdominals to stabilize the trunk.
- Do not allow the back to round; keep the head up and the eyes forward.
- Cadence is slow to allow for precision and adequate time to jump and land properly; however, each jump should be performed quickly and explosively.
- On each landing, the feet should be oriented to the front. The landing should be “soft” and proceed from the balls of the feet to the heels.
How to Do the Alternate Staggered Squat Jump
- The Stance: Start by standing with your feet hip-width apart & your core engaged.
- Right leg Forward: Step forward with your right foot, keeping your knee bent at a right angle. Your left foot should stay behind, just slightly off the ground.
- The Squat: Lower yourself into a squat, ensuring your front knee doesn’t go past your toes. Keep your back straight and your core engaged.
- The Jump: Explosively push off the ground with both feet, launching your body upward.
- Mid-Air Leg Exchange: While you’re in the air, swiftly switch the position of your feet: your left foot comes forward, and the right foot goes back.
- The Landing: Return to the staggered squat position, absorbing the impact with your legs and immediately preparing for the next jump.
- Repeat the exercise, forwarding your left and right feet for each jump.
What Muscles are Worked by the Alternate Staggered Squat Jump?
The Alternate Staggered Squat Jump workout exercises target the following muscles:
- Primary (Hamstrings, Glutes, Quadriceps)
- Secondary (Calves, Core, Hip Flexor Muscles)
Some common mistakes to avoid when performing this exercise include:
- Knee Alignment: You should ensure your front knee does not go past your toes when in the squat position, which might lead to knee injuries.
- Core Engagement: If you don’t engage your core while doing this exercise, it can lead to a loss of balance and less effective results.
- Landing Technique: Be keen on your ‘landing,’ land softly, and bend your knees to absorb the impact; If you land too hard, you may cause unnecessary strain on your joints.
Benefits of an Alternate Staggered Squat Jump
Performing the Alternate Staggered Squat Jump can provide several benefits:
- Strength and Power: The alternate staggered squat jump exercise is effective in building strength and power in your lower body, which is essential for sports and activities that involve running, jumping, or changing direction.
- Coordination and Balance: You enhance your coordination and balancing skills when you switch legs in mid-air challenges.
- Cardiovascular Fitness: The alternate staggered squat jump is a high-intensity exercise that increases your heart rate, a cardiovascular benefit.
- Functional Fitness: This exercise is excellent for developing functional fitness; hence you can perform everyday activities more efficiently.
- Calorie Burning: The alternate staggered squat jump is a full-body, high-intensity workout that can help you burn more calories than other less intense exercises.
Remember to warm up and hydrate well before starting the exercise and cool down afterward.