Simple Exercises for Explosive Strength

For this series, all you need is a kettlebell and weighted ball. These dynamic movements train explosive power—the capability to exert maximum force in a short time— something hard to get from an at-home workout.

1. Simple Kettlebell Swing

Improves explosive strength in the hips, lower back and legs.

Start with your feet a little wider than hip distance and the kettlebell a few inches in front of you on the floor. Squat down, keeping your back extended, knees bent and hamstrings loaded. Swing the kettlebell behind you in between your legs, and then snap the hips to raise the weight up to chest height. Keeping the back extended, return to the bent-knee start position. Complete 10 to 12 swings.

2. Weighted Squat

Builds strength in the legs.

Start with your feet a little wider than hip distance and hold the kettlebell by the handle upside down. Lower the hips into a squat position, and drive through the heels as you return to standing. Complete 10 to 12 squats.

3. Weighted Quick Jump

Builds isolated explosiveness through the lower body.

Start the exercise on your knees, while holding a weighted medicine ball out in front of your body. Without moving your arms, jump into a squat position. Slowly, carefully return to your knees, and repeat the action. Complete 10 to 12 jumps.

4. Weighted Ball Slam

Increases explosive strength through the upper back, shoulders and arms.

Stand with your feet a little wider than hip distance, and raise your arms above your head (but slightly in front for safety) while holding the weighted ball. Pressing on top of the ball with your hands, slam it as hard as you can. Pick it up and repeat. Complete 10 to 12 slams.

5. Static Plank

Increases core stability, which is important when simultaneously performing different actions with the legs and arms.

Get into an upper push-up position, making sure to slightly tuck the pelvis for complete core engagement. Hold for 30 seconds, and complete four to five rounds.

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