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You Might as Well Jump — Everyone Else Does These Days

from The Washington Post

Lenny Bernstein, writer of To Your Health blog, writes: "Two years ago, when I was still co-writing The Washington Post's fitness column, I decided, in honor of the NCAA tournament, to see if I could improve my jumping ability — despite being overweight, in my mid-50s and generally earthbound. It didn't work out too well, but I got to meet Brandon Todd, who at 5'5" easily dunked a basketball, and told me he had been doing so since he was 5'2" and 13 years old.

Now everywhere I go, people seem to be jumping as part of their workouts. They jump on and off boxes, they skip rope, they're leaping all kinds of things on Parkour courses. At Crossfit boxes that are now more plentiful than snow in Boston, someone always seems to be jumping on or off something. Check out this guy's 64-inch vertical leap from a standing start.

With the tournament here again and young men preparing to fly across my TV, I got to wondering why everyone seems to be jumping these days. I spoke to Walt Thompson, a professor of exercise physiology at Georgia State University, who has studied plyometrics — a form of exercise that uses jumping, hopping and bounding to develop muscle power — who broke it down for me." more

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