Workout Wednesday: Boost Your Muscular Endurance With Split Jumps January 27 2015


Why bother?

During a long riding lesson, your thighs and glutes are probably the first parts of your body that start to feel like jelly. And while you might assume that the best way to strengthen your trunk is to get to the gym and hit the squat rack, a powerlifting routine isn’t likely to help much with your riding. Instead, you should really focus on your muscular endurance, so you can get through a long class, or even a 30 minute lesson, without developing jelly legs.

Plyometrics like split jumps (which are a part of the Spartacus Workout) are a great way to build your muscular endurance. Split jumps work your glutes, your thighs, and a bunch of the stabilizing muscles in your core and lower body, and they’re just the kinds of exercise that will strengthen your trunk for riding, without adding a ton of bulk to your legs.

How do I do it?

  1. Stand like you’re about to dip down into a lunge - one foot forward and one foot back, with your knees slightly bent.
  2. Jump up, swinging your back leg forward and your front leg back, so they end up opposite to your starting position.
  3. Land with bent knees and dip down into a full lunge. Keep your upper body straight as you do so. Make sure your front knee doesn’t cross over your front toe as you lunge.
  4. Repeat for four sets of 12-15 reps, with 1-2 minutes of rest between sets.

When should I do it?

This really depends on your routine, but bear in mind that plyometric exercises like split jumps will turn you into a quivering heap of jelly. Given that, it’s best to do these towards the end of your workout, or as a stand-alone exercise.