If you want jumping power, workout those gluteal muscles.
There are several popular sports that require a great deal of jumping power from the gluteal muscles, such as volleyball and basketball. If improving that ability is what you're after, there are simple exercises you can do at home or at the gym that will firm up and shape up your backside. You don't have to be a star athlete to have star-quality jumping power.
Jumping on Boxes
Box Jumping is an exercise routine that will build jumping power in your lower body. It's a plyometric exercise, meaning a maximum amount of force is exerted in a small window of time. You can even adjust the height of the box to make a more challenging workout routine. For beginners, you should start with a sturdy box or platform that is between 6 and 12 inches off the ground. More advanced box jumping can feature boxes that are 2- to 5-feet high. Start by facing the box with your feet spaced shoulder-width apart. Roll your shoulders and arms back and bend at the knees. Next, explode and leap to the top of the box. Try to land softly on top, then hop back down to the floor. Start with a set of seven to 12 jumps to see results in your jumping power.
Kick Like a Donkey
Quadrupedal hip extensions, also called donkey kicks, are a quick way to build the gluteal muscles. For beginners, you should start out on all fours, bracing your weight between your hands and knees. More advanced fitness enthusiasts can move down to the forearms, which makes for a more difficult cardiovascular exercise. If your focus is on strengthening the glutes and gaining more jumping power, working out on all fours is ideal. Start on all fours and flatten your back. Lift one leg up toward your chest, then kick that leg back. Try to point your toes up toward the ceiling. Slowly return that leg to a 90-degree position and alternate legs. Do seven to 12 repetitions for each leg.
Squatting Before You Jump
Squats are one of the best exercises you can do to strengthen and tone your gluteal muscles. It directly mimics the motions you'll use during the takeoff phase of your jump. You don't need heavy weights to see noticeable results either; just your own body weight will do. Start by standing with your feet facing forward, spaced roughly shoulder-width apart. You can hold your arms out to the sides or in front of you to keep your balance. Next, bend at the knees and push your backside out. Go into a deep bend, narrower than 30 degrees. As you extend your legs, squeeze the gluteal muscles together and avoid bouncing up and down. Press your body weight through the squat. A set or two with repetitions between seven and 12 reps will give you a boost in jumping power.
Walking and Lunging
The lunge by itself is a great dynamic stretch, but when you add resistance and repetitions, you transform this exercise into one of the best glute exercises for jumping. For resistance, grab two light to medium dumbbells in each hand. Hold them down at your side with palms facing inward. For repetitions, give yourself room to walk. Alternate legs and walk with the lunge. As you lunge forward, be sure to plant your lead foot heel first and line up your lead knee with the tips of your toes. Put most of your weight on the front leg to straighten out your body. Change legs, then lunge again. The deeper you lunge, the more this exercise works out your gluteal muscles.