Some exercises are more common in workout routines than others – simply because it is common knowledge what they are good for. Most people know that squats form a crunchy bottom or push-ups train your arm and chest muscles. But did you know that for a good warm-up or endurance workout you don’t have to spend hours on the treadmill? Because there is a very effective exercise for that, which you already know from your schooldays: Jumping jacks.
Here we tell you why jumping jacks should become part of your training plan.
What do jumping jacks do for training?
Jumping Jacks are a full-body exercise that can effectively supplement any workout and trim it for calorie burning. Here are some examples:
Jumping Jacks drive your heartbeat up and train your endurance. But because of the high range of motion, especially in the hip and shoulder joints, your joints and tendons also get warm. Attention: Do not perform the movement jerkily. Otherwise you can easily injure yourself, especially if your tendons and ligaments are not yet warm.
During interval training
With interval training, phases of stress and recovery alternate. The jumping jack is ideally suited for this. For example, perform the exercise for one minute and then take a one-minute break. Your heart rate remains elevated while you pause. This ensures an increased afterburning effect.
How the afterburning effect works
Down at the Cool Down
Admittedly, when it comes to Jumping Jacks, nobody necessarily thinks about a relaxed cool down after a hard training session. But have you ever heard of active regeneration? This term refers to recovery phases in which you are still actively moving. The aim is to set a training stimulus that is different from the original exercise.
A Jumping Jack makes full use of your full range of motion without putting undue stress on your joints. It is therefore the perfect exercise for your body to actively regenerate itself. The aim is to increase the blood supply to the muscles and to ensure that damaged tissue is broken down by the body. Instead of taking a break from sentences, why not do 10 to 20 jumping jacks.
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How many calories do jumping jacks burn?
Really many! As childish as the name sounds, the sport exercise from our childhood days is as thick as a fist behind the ears. At least in terms of calorie consumption. Because jumping makes you sweat a lot, and if you do jumping jacks regularly, you will literally improve your endurance. You also heat up your cardiovascular system. This exercise is a real calorie killer and is a great way to help you lose weight.
Just to name a house number: Depending on body type and intensity, 100 jumping jacks can burn 100 to 200 calories.
Performance: Stand straight, feet together, arms at sides of body. Now jump off, open legs wider than shoulder width, raise arms sideways and clap hands together over head. Land. Jump back to the starting position. © F8studio / Shutterstock.com
What is trained by the jumping jack?
With Jumping Jacks you not only improve your endurance. Jumping movements activate your bottom, but also your leg muscles. By moving your arms up and down at the sides, your arms and shoulders are also strengthened. And not only that: The Jumping Jack is a bodyweight exercise. In other words, an exercise that is performed exclusively with your own body weight.
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In addition, the interaction of the entire musculature is promoted, rather than individual muscles being strained. Because also the supporting muscles are significantly involved in the jumping jack, so that you can keep your balance.
Bringing arms and legs apart and back together at the same time requires additional coordination. When jumping up and down, your body has to absorb the entire body weight, which activates the fasciae, i.e. your connective tissue – and this helps to prevent tension. A further advantage: the high range of motion that Jumping Jack brings with it makes you more flexible in the shoulder and hip joint.
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Where can I take Jumping Jacks everywhere?
The jumping jack is simple and you can do it anywhere. No equipment is necessary. In contrast to running, you don’t even have to go outside the door or put on sports shoes. All you need is a square meter of space to jump and enough room for your arms.
Jumping Jacks can also be performed as a partner challenge. © Syda Productions/ Shutterstock
How do I make a puppet right?
Home position: Stand up straight. Feet are hip-wide apart. The arms are at the sides of the body. Palms point forward.
Implementation: Jump up and spread your legs. At the same time, stretch your arms up to the sides and touch your hands above your head. Jump back to the starting position. Even if it becomes strenuous, always stay upright! Also make sure that your legs and arms remain straight. So do not make any X- or O- legs.
Tip: The quieter you jump, the better. First do the exercise barefoot, then you will bounce better.
Which variations of the jumping jack are there?
Granted: every exercise will eventually become monotonous if you do it too often. But you can also vary the level of difficulty of the Jumping Jack exercise and thus adjust it individually. For example, you can jump faster or longer. Here are three variation ideas:
Jumping Jack Star
- Starting position: Your feet touch each other. Tips of your feet point forward. Go into a quarter squat.
- Execution: Jump up and extend arms and legs star-shaped to the sides. Jump back and land in the quarter squat again.
The great thing about jumping jacks: They walk anytime and anywhere – just be careful in the cold with too much endurance sport! © Olha Afanasieva / Shutterstock.com
- Starting position: Step into the forearm support. Your hands are exactly under your shoulders. Feet are parallel and hip-wide.
- Procedure: Jump with your legs into a V-position.
Jumping Jack Challenge
- Our tip to stay on the ball: Make it a challenge and make jumping jacks every day for a month.
- On day 1 you start with as many jumping jacks as you can manage and increase day by day.
- Maybe you can motivate a few more friends to join in?
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Jumping Jacks are the underrated fitness exercise par excellence. The so inconspicuous looking jumping jack is perfectly suited to complement any training session, but is also an effective strength endurance workout in itself. Therefore, the exercise is not only something for kids to do but should celebrate a comeback in your training plan.