Shoes For Plyometrics
November 18, 2012 11 Comments
A plyometrics workout is simply a workout that is designed to give you explosive, powerful movements. These routines usually involve a lot of jumping, impact, and leave you a sweaty mess after all is said and done. I love plyo workouts because they get my heart rate up, strengthen my core and my legs, and burn calories like crazy. These are great workouts that help you become more athletic. You want to run faster? Do plyo. You want jump higher? Do plyo. You want to lose weight and build muscle… you get the point. So with all this jumping around and impact, what are good shoes for plyometrics?
Good Shoes for Plyometrics
The answer is, of course, it depends. I actually use different shoes for different plyo routines. I also know people that go shoeless (on carpet, do not do plyo barefoot on hard surfaces!!). The gist of what I am saying, is that we will have to determine what your current fitness level is, how much impact you have trained for, and what surface you will be plyo-ing on.
If you are out of shape or not used to impact at all I recommend quality cross training shoes for plyometrics, regardless of workout surface. There are a ton of options here but you will want a good, non-running shoe, that provides cushion, structure, and support to your foot. This will help to prevent foot, ankle, and knee injuries as you are starting out. Go with a trusted brand like Asics, NB, Nike, etc.
Now, if you have been running regularly and are used to impact or you are in good shape, you might consider going to lighter shoes for plyometrics… especially on carpet. I personally rock a minimalist shoe when I do plyo but I have A LOT of experience with plyo and running. Minimal shoes are very light and provide very little in the way of structure and support. The plus to this, besides having less weight on your feet, is that you start to strengthen the feet, ankles, and arches. Doing this makes your feet more naturally durable and strong, which really helps with running and other activities. Plyos have single-handedly gotten me to a point where I no longer get running injuries. The strength in my heels, arches, and calves are such that I can run long distances in minimal shoes and not get injured… definitely a plus. My running gait has greatly improved (core work has helped a lot here too), and I am a better runner because of plyo work. Wearing the right shoes for me has made a big difference. So if you have some conditioning under your belt and think you can handle minimal shoes, I recommend them.
Lastly, if you are working out on carpet, are in good shape, and are used to impact… you can consider going to “barefoot” shoes for plyometrics like Vibrams or going completely barefoot. This will have the same benefit as using the minimal shoe (stronger arches, ankles, calves) that I mentioned above. I will caution everyone to work into barefoot plyos carefully and ease into going full tilt over several workouts. The last thing you want is a showstopping injury. No matter what, DO NOT GO BAREFOOT ON HARD SURFACES!! You will hurt yourself!
An exception to all cases above… the plyometrics in workouts from Insanity – The Asylum, particularly Vertical Plyo, require me to wear structured shoes. The the jumping in The Asylum is just too much to go with a minimal shoe in my opinion. Don’t mess around here, be safe.
If you are just getting into P90X, I urge you to take the safe route and get some good cross training shoes for plyometrics. Over time, and if your training requires you to start to build endurance for things like runnning, you can consider going to a lighter shoe. This will take time and patience. The last thing you want to do is get hurt. Getting hurt can stop your progress and potentially throw you off the fitness path altogether. So be smart and always play it on the safe side.
Shoes for Plyometrics: Recommendations and Running
If you would like specific shoe recommendations, I can help if I know your particular situation. Also, for running… I highly, highly recommend going to a good running store where they observe your gait and stride before buying running shoes. Otherwise you are just picking your favorite color.
Shoes for Plyometrics: My Favorite Plyo Workouts:
- Best Plyo Program Starting Out - P90X PlyoX < CLICK FOR MORE INFO/PURCHASE
- Best Endurance Plyo - Insanity Max Interval Plyo < CLICK FOR MORE INFO/PURCHASE
- My Favorite Plyo - P90X2 Plyocide < CLICK FOR MORE INFO/PURCHASE
- Most Insane Plyo - Insanity – The Asylum Vertical Plyo < CLICK FOR MORE INFO/PURCHASE
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