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Plyometric Jump Training and Volleyball

Lower-volume plyometric jump training can be effective for a variety of participants.

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Plyometric jump training for volleyball players

In volleyball training programs, low-volume plyometric protocols can be as effective as high-volume methods and have less injury risk, according to a study in the Journal of Sports Science & Medicine (2020; 19 [3], 489–99).

An international research group reviewed 14 randomized controlled studies that included healthy volleyball players—without restriction for gender or age—who participated in plyometric jump training (PJT) for at least 2 weeks. PJT programs included lower-body jumping, bounding or hopping.

Data analysis showed that the programs improved vertical jump height in all types of volleyball players, even when volume and frequency were relatively low. Study authors noted that lower-volume training—for example, 40 jumps per session, twice per week—yielded similar improvements to higher-volume protocols—while reducing injury risk. Lower-volume options also left players more training time to dedicate to other aspects of game preparation.

Further inquiry is needed to determine the ideal length of a PJT program, but based on available studies, programs shorter than 8 weeks are as effective as those longer than 8 weeks. Study authors recommend individualizing the training approach based on player position and preparation to sustain PJT loads.

See also: Peak Neuromuscular Power for Your Athlete Clients

Shirley Archer-Eichenberger, JD, MA

Shirley Archer, JD, MA, is an internationally acknowledged integrative health and mindfulness specialist, best-selling author of 16 fitness and wellness books translated into multiple languages and sold worldwide, award-winning health journalist, contributing editor to Fitness Journal, media spokesperson, and IDEA's 2008 Fitness Instructor of the Year. She's a 25-year industry veteran and former health and fitness educator at the Stanford Prevention Research Center, who has served on multiple industry committees and co-authored trade books and manuals for ACE, ACSM and YMCA of the USA. She has appeared on TV worldwide and was a featured trainer on America's Next Top Model.

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