For Trainers
Single Leg Box Jumps Done Right

I love single leg box jumps for developing power. Speed, acceleration, first step quickness, and change of direction will all get a bump up from these. Not only that, but we know ACL injuries occur during landing and cutting, so they will help to prevent injury as well. All good things, naturally. However, progressing to single leg box jumps from double leg box jumps can be scary for some.

Getting Over the Single Leg Box Jump Fear

Athletes can be hesitant and unsure of their ability to complete this new task. As a coach, you know they can do it, you know they are ready, but there they are, just staring at the box like you’re asking them to jump over Mt. Everest. Cool it. A little patience goes a long way.

Rather than getting pissed off and saying a bunch of really mean, condescending passive aggressive shit like I used to, which does nothing but make them think you’re an asshole (they were right), we can instead look to create belief and plant seeds of confidence through bridge the gap type exercises. The “seeds” are exercises that are a progression off of the old, familiar (or ‘comfortable’) option, but not quite as complex or difficult (or ‘scary’) as the new one.

Here’s how it’s done:

In this case, I used 2-1 box jumps as a bridge. You can see that they allow her to jump off of two legs, where she is confident in her ability to clear the box, and still practice this new task of landing on the box with 1 leg.

After a few reps of 2-1’s, she feels good about it, and then she goes and attacks the single leg reps and absolutely crushes it, just as I knew she could.

She just needed to believe. Don’t be an asshole (really). Plant seeds instead.

God, I’m getting so soft in my old age.