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What: Repeatedly jumping the feet wide while circling the arms overhead, then back again
Why: Jumping jacks burn about 100 calories in 10 minutes and no special equipment or skills are needed.
Requirements: A good pair of shoes, a conditioned heart
Precautions: Jumping jacks are high impact, which may tax the joints. They may also remind you of elementary or high school gym class traumas.
Variations: Plyo-jacks (squatting then jumping in the air), stepping the feet out rather than jumping, holding a medicine ball, push-up jacks (jumping the legs together while doing push-ups)
Best Ways to Use Jumping Jacks in a Workout:
- In a Cardio Circuit: Use jumping jacks in a circuit, doing them for 30-60 seconds and alternating them with other cardio exercises such as marching, jogging, jumping rope, etc. Try a different variation of jumping jacks each time, repeating the circuit for 10-30 minutes.
- In a Strength Circuit: Alternate 30-60 seconds of jumping jacks with strength exercises such as squats, lunges, pushups, and dips for 10-30 minutes.
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