Half-Twist Jump Squats
Developing your legs isn’t just about building bulk—it’s also about training the propulsive strength you need for sports, power workouts, and just having fun. This exercise builds muscle, power and speed, all at once.
Stand upright with arms at your sides and feet hip-width apart. Your toes should point forward and your core should be engaged, allowing your back to arch naturally while keeping your chest facing front (see Photo 1).
- Lower yourself into a squat position. Press your hips out and back as you sit through your thighs. Keep your back naturally arched and your core stable, and avoid letting your shoulders move in front of your knees (see Photo 2).
- From the squat, bringing your arms up into the air as you jump as high as you can. As your feet leave the floor, twist your shoulders and then your legs halfway around so you are facing the opposite direction (see Photo 3).
- Land in a squat position with your arms down, and repeat the exercise, now turning the shoulders in the other direction. (See photo 4). Continue to alternate directions until you have done a total of 20 jumps (10 turning each way).
Once you have mastered the basic jump squat, you may add difficulty by putting both hands on top of your head throughout the exercise.
About Billy Polson: Billy Polson is the founder and co-owner of DIAKADI Body, which was voted the best personal training gym in San Francisco by CitySearch in 2006. A competitive swimmer and triathlete in his own right, Polson has over 15 years of experience working as a coach and trainer. He was recently named by Men's Journal (December 2005) as one of the Top 100 Trainers in America.