Years of research, tests and studies prove that plyometric training maximizes an athlete's ability to produce power. Most plyo exercises focus on the lower body, but athletes and strength coaches should not neglect the benefits of upper-body plyometrics.
Power production from the upper extremities is a huge factor in most sports. To build athletic moves, upper-body plyometric exercises require the athlete to throw or push something to produce the correct amount of power. The most commonly used tool is a medicine ball.
Don't leave any gaps in your training program. To reach your peak performance goals, use plyometrics for both upper- and lower-body movements. Below are three medicine ball exercises that help an athlete develop power in the upper body.
MB Chest Pass - 3x10
Start in athletic stance in front of a wall or rebounding device. Push the med ball from the front of your chest as quickly as possible. Allow the ball to bounce and return. Support your athletic stance and contract your core throughout the pushing motion. Repeat.
MB Overhead Throw - 3x10
Start in athletic stance in front of a wall or rebounding device. Lift the medicine ball overhead with your arms extended, then propel the ball forward while keeping your head and chest up. Throw ball against wall with as much force as possible. Allow ball to bounce before receiving it. Repeat.
MB Side Toss - 3x10 each side
Face 90 degrees away from wall with a shoulder leading. Keeping the medicine ball at waist level, take a short backswing to the hip. From there, accelerate the ball in a rotational fashion toward the wall or rebounder. Keep your head and chest upright and finish the throw with your hips facing the wall and your back foot pivoted. Allow for a bounce and repeat.
Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock