Figure Skating Off-Ice Training: Jump Higher – Part 2 (Kristina Anderson)

In this figure skating video, figure skating strength and conditioning coach Kristina Anderson shows some more exercises to help a skater increase vertical jump height.  Jump height on the ice is a critical factor for successfully completing double jumps, triple jumps, and quads.  It is common for young skaters to reach technical skill levels that would allow them to learn a double axel or a triple jump at an early age, but they may lack the sheer athleticism to jump high enough for success.  This period of having the other other double jumps while waiting for the natural athleticism to develop that comes from normal maturity is often extremely frustrating to skaters and coaches alike.  But skaters in this situation should be working on off-ice jump height training to help develop the needed athleticism earlier.  In the first video of this series to increase a figure skater’s vertical jump, Kristina discussed calf raises and jumping up onto a box or bench.

In this video, Kristina walks us through two “step-off” exercises that involve stepping off a box or ledge or bench.  Kristina explains the prerequisites for attempting these exercises safely and under complete control.  In the first exercise which she calls a “drop jump,” the skater steps off the box and tries to stop all of their motion as fast as they can after they touch the ground.  The goal is to minimize the time between the moment the toes initially touch the ground the instant the body comes to a complete stop (including wiggles).  In the second exercise which she calls a “depth jump,” the skater attempts to change direction as fast as possible while spending as little time as possible in contact with the ground.  Kristina also talks about numbers of repetitions and cautions against over-training with these types of “plyometric” drills.

Editor’s note:  Another related exercise involves landing and quickly jumping as high as possible.  Over the years there has been some confusion regarding the names for these exercises.  Here is one account that uses slightly different names/definitions than Kristina used, but it also offers some nice history and context for where these exercises come from.


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