The idea of a sturdy box being able to benefit your workouts may seem unlikely at first. However, a plyo box has the potential to offer a variety of positive effects.
Plyo boxes are often not the only way to get these benefits but they do make this piece of fitness equipment more attractive.
1. Plyo boxes can help you train muscle power
You can describe muscle power as how much force your muscles can generate in a short amount of time.
Interestingly enough, the way you train this area of your fitness is not necessarily the same as for other goals like increasing muscle size.
One of the reasons for this is that your muscles can consist of different types of muscle fibers. The way you work your muscles can influence the ratios of these (1).
For example, there are type 2 fast-twitch muscle fibers that are helpful for generating a lot of force in short bursts. These will be helpful if you want to improve muscle power.
Plyo boxes can be used for different exercises but the most popular one is the plyometric box jump.
This exercise is great for training the type 2 fast-twitch muscle fibers and in turn muscle power.
It is worth noting that not everyone will want/need this muscle power. Whether this is actually a benefit of plyo boxes or not depends on this.
2. Plyo boxes can be easier on your knees and ankles
Plyometric training definitely offers a lot of benefits but plyo boxes are not the only way to do it. There are also other explosive leg exercises like squat jumps, jump lunges, broad jumps, power skips, etc.
In turn, you could wonder why you would do plyo box jumps instead of these other options.
Besides a different reason that will be discussed in another benefit, using a plyo box can be easier on your knees and ankles.
One of the main plyo box alternatives would be a jump squat where you simply land on the ground instead of on a plyo box like in box jumps.
In jump squats, you build up speed as you “fall down” after the highest point of your jump. Even if you fold your knees somewhat and land on the front parts of your feet, this can be challenging for your body.
By landing on a plyo box at more or less your highest point, you don’t get the same impact.
Individuals who are interested in box jumps also tend to do other exercises. A plyo box could be a good investment to avoid putting your ankles and knees under too much pressure.
3. Plyo boxes can improve vertical jump performance
As mentioned, improving muscle power is one of the things plyo boxes are good for.
Being able to generate a lot of force with your legs in a short amount of time is not only useful in plyo box workouts. There are other situations where this can help too.
In turn, better vertical jump performance can help in sports like basketball or can just be a fun skill to have.
Again, this is a benefit that does not apply to everyone. What your training goals are will influence how helpful you will find plyo boxes.
4. Plyo boxes can add variety to your exercise routine
While there are still some personal preferences involved, many people will enjoy the variety of using different pieces of fitness equipment and doing different exercises.
Additionally, if you compare box jumps to jump squats, many people find it fun to be able to focus on a specific target instead of just jumping into the air as high as possible.
Enjoying your workouts more (or disliking them to a lesser extent) may sound like a luxury at first.
However, this will also influence how easy you find it to stay constant with your exercise routine.
If this is the case for you, any extra enjoyment you get from plyo boxes could also lead to more health benefits.
5. Plyo boxes can improve coordination and balance
Similar to many other fitness components, it is often possible to improve your coordination and balance to some extent.
You can do this by doing things like plyo box jumps that are challenging (but not too challenging) in these areas.
Having better coordination and balance skills is not only good for plyo box drills and challenging sports.
Getting a better feel of how you move your body parts and better balance can also help you avoid bumping into things and falling down in your daily life.
6. Plyo boxes are very versatile
How much better a piece of fitness equipment makes your life is relevant too but being able to use something for multiple exercises is typically a benefit.
These are better equipment options in this area too but you can still say that this benefit applies to plyo boxes too.
Some examples of plyo box exercises you can do include box jumps, step-ups, decline pushups, Bulgarian split squats, feet-elevated pike pushups, etc.
In simpler words, you can use plyo boxes to train different fitness components and muscles. You don’t have to stick to the popular box jumps exercise.
7. Plyo boxes can help you grow and strengthen muscles
Part of helping you work a variety of body parts is that plyo boxes can in turn also help you grow and strengthen many different muscles.
Box jumps can help you build muscle mass but some of the slower plyo box exercises that you can do with more resistance can be even better for this purpose.
Exactly what muscles plyo boxes help you grow depends on the exact movements you do.
For example, step-ups can help you grow and strengthen leg muscles like your quadriceps, glutes, hamstrings, calves, inner thigh muscles, and outer thigh muscles.
On the other hand, feet-elevated pike pushups can help you grow and strengthen your deltoids (main shoulder muscles), triceps (back upper arms), and trapezius (upper shoulder muscle).
This aspect of plyo boxes is definitely not unique but still a positive point.
One thing you do want to keep in mind is that stronger individuals may also need to add weights to their plyo box workouts to see optimal results.
8. Plyo boxes can help you improve athletic performance
Many (hobby) athletes stick to their sports or exercises when trying to improve. However, sometimes turning to other types of workouts offers more improvements in a shorter amount of time.
It should be clear that these things will come in handy when doing sports where running fast and jumping high offer you an edge over the competition.
9. Plyo boxes can help you lose weight
In a simplified version, weight loss, more specifically fat loss, comes down to making it so your body requires more energy than is coming in from the things you eat.
When you reach this point, your body turns to energy stores like body fat to be able to function.
While there are other ways to do it, many people try to get to this point by exercising more.
People who want to lose weight can definitely also consider training with a plyo box.
This is because activities like plyo box workouts will require more energy from your body than more standard movements.
Additionally, doing the right plyo box exercises with the right weights and repetitions can also help you build muscle mass. This muscle mass increases your energy usage throughout the day.
In simpler words, any activity that makes you burn more calories, including plyo boxes, can help you to lose weight to some extent.
One thing you need to keep in mind is that things like what you eat still play a big role in this process.
Additionally, plyo boxes are not always the most effective tool for losing weight.
That being said, it is still worth briefly mentioning that plyo boxes and the exercises you do with them can also benefit your life in this area.