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Old 11-13-2010, 08:23 AM   #1
Fernando Mendoza
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Default Is there a reason I should change out of weightlifting shoes for box jumps?

Recently I've added box jumps to my programming. I was performing some yesterday and one of the gym staff (who's competent in weightlifting and has actually competed) came up to me just as I had finished my first set of box jumps and told me that I should change out of my weightlifting shoes (e.g. wear running shoes) when I do them. The reasoning was that on jumping back down (e.g. going back to the ground), I could potentially hurt my knees. Her reasoning was the lack of cushioning the sole of the shoe gives. I responded to her when I land I give my knees slack so I end up half or even full squatting when I land. She then retorted that I may save my knees with that approach, but my hips would get the brunt of any injury that would occur.

The reason I ask is that I think she's full of shit in this case (I just continued on my way with the box jumps). I kind of compromised my routine based on her advice, by putting my hands on the box, to enable me to climb down the box (it was more of a little leap, but with my hands on the box, to land on the balls of my feet more easily). But I think in principle she's going overboard and nothing horrible will happen.

Am I wrong on this one? Should I switch to running shoes for box jumping?
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Old 11-13-2010, 02:34 PM   #2
Emily Mattes
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I'd agree with her. Not to mention sneakers allow you to land and jump more naturally (without the heel in the way) and you won't be wearing out your lifting shoes on things that aren't lifting. I only wear mine on the platform and walking to and from the squat rack, they're not meant for dynamic/conditioning/whatever work.
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Old 11-13-2010, 05:32 PM   #3
Fernando Mendoza
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I'd agree with her. Not to mention sneakers allow you to land and jump more naturally (without the heel in the way) and you won't be wearing out your lifting shoes on things that aren't lifting. I only wear mine on the platform and walking to and from the squat rack, they're not meant for dynamic/conditioning/whatever work.
Hi Emily, appreciate the response. Based on your response I assume you carry two pairs of shoes to the gym if you have lifting and jumping activities scheduled on the same day? I figure I might get used to doing it, given that I got used to bringing my chalk everywhere else (except the gym I'm at now, which provides it's own chalk for members). Where I'm coming from is that I generally just wear one pair, my lifting shoes, right now - from the locker to the gym, and back. I've seen other people change shoes at the platform, but I've always been under the impression that is excessively protective behaviour for a pair of shoes that get whacked 4-5 times a week. Either way, potentially now I've got to buy new shoes. Do you know what type of running shoes would be good to support (and withstand I guess) jumping activities?
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Old 11-13-2010, 07:56 PM   #4
Garrett Smith
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Doing high rep box jumps with jumping down is bad for your knees regardless of which shoes you wear.
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Old 11-14-2010, 09:24 AM   #5
Fernando Mendoza
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Doing high rep box jumps with jumping down is bad for your knees regardless of which shoes you wear.
Thanks for the advice Garrett. Piecing together the advice I've been given so far, I'm going to do the following on Friday:
- maintain the 5sx3r box jumps
- jump up to the box, but sit down and climb back down to the floor, for each rep.
- no change in footwear.

That should allow me to do the reps on the box jumps, but prevent a knee injury ticking timebomb from exploding. From your experience, is that a sound plan?
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Old 11-14-2010, 12:31 PM   #6
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Do what you like. Just remember, everyone's knees were fine before they went bad. Gravity is a bitch, and as most people get older, they wish there weren't as many miles on their knees. Running down stairs and high reps of jumping down from boxes takes a lot more than it gives.

On second thought, maybe you should try your box jumps with a weighted vest.
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Old 11-19-2010, 10:49 PM   #7
Emily Mattes
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Originally Posted by Fernando Mendoza View Post
Hi Emily, appreciate the response. Based on your response I assume you carry two pairs of shoes to the gym if you have lifting and jumping activities scheduled on the same day? I figure I might get used to doing it, given that I got used to bringing my chalk everywhere else (except the gym I'm at now, which provides it's own chalk for members). Where I'm coming from is that I generally just wear one pair, my lifting shoes, right now - from the locker to the gym, and back. I've seen other people change shoes at the platform, but I've always been under the impression that is excessively protective behaviour for a pair of shoes that get whacked 4-5 times a week. Either way, potentially now I've got to buy new shoes. Do you know what type of running shoes would be good to support (and withstand I guess) jumping activities?
Ha, I bring 2-4 pairs to the gym, depending on what I'm doing:
Oly shoes - Oly lifting & squats, stone loading, axle/log work

Hi-top Converse knock-offs - Most other lifting including box squats, sometimes dynamic outdoor work like sled pulling and whatnot

Onitsuka Tigers - Jumping, sprinting, dynamic work

Hiking boots - Heavy strongman outdoor work, yoke, keg carries, heavy sled pulls (these have better tread)

The Converse and Tigers are somewhat interchangeable for some exercises though I stick with the Converse for box squats, and the Tigers for sprint work. I generally don't do more than three pairs in a workout, and that's usually my event days as they're 3-4 hours long and cover a lot of different lifting ground.

EDIT: Reading this, it all sounds ridiculous but is pretty par for the course for the strongmen who train at my gym. The only pair of shoes I've bought recently are the Converse ones, everything else is 2-3+ years old.
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Old 01-14-2011, 06:47 AM   #8
Brian M Smith
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I would think doing olympic lifts in your wl shoes is probably the most stress they see, no?

The polish team did box jumps in their shoes w/o problems (at 2:11) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TU7bEr1ZyuQ
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Old 11-17-2010, 07:32 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fernando Mendoza View Post
Recently I've added box jumps to my programming.
This is the decision that should have been debated, not choice of footwear.
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