The standing long jump is often used to measure an athlete's power, and learning how to train for the jump can help you make the best impression possible. Unlike a standard long jump, where you sprint a great distance before hurling yourself into the pit, a standing long jump is a jump performed from a squatting position. You move quite suddenly from stationary to vertical. By performing a few training exercises, you can prepare your muscles to explode with power when jump time comes.
Your leg muscles must have the ability to contract quickly and powerfully in a standing long jump. To bulk up those muscles, you'll need to add weights to your workout. Use dumbbells that you can easily hold in your hands, but that are heavy enough to challenge your shoulders. While you hold your dumbbells at your sides, step up onto a stair or a bench with one leg, and extend your other leg behind you. Do six to 10 repetitions on each leg. Standard squats are also great for your leg muscles, and they help tone your abdomen muscles. Stand with a barbell held across your chest and keep your feet shoulder-width apart. Lower your torso with your leg muscles as you keep your back straight. Stop when you're in a squatted position and then return to a standing position. Perform six to 10 repetitions of this exercise as well.
As you jump into the air in your long jump, you'll use your arms to propel your body forward. The stronger your arms are, the more you'll be able to push yourself forward. Standard bicep curls can help you build up the big muscles in your arms. Hold a dumbbell in your hands with your arms bent at the elbows, your wrists pointing at your chest. Keeping your wrist straight, raise the weight to your chest. Work only one arm at a time, and keep your breathing even. Perform 10 repetitions per arm.
Training your muscles to explode off the ground means practicing your jumping technique over and over. Place your feet shoulder-width apart and put your weight on the balls of your feet. Jump as high in the air as you possibly can, while you bring your knees up to your chest. In each repetition, you should focus on maximizing of your power. Perform eight repetitions. To practice your jump landing, use a slight variation on this jump. Begin in a squatted position with your weight centered on your feet. Swing your arms forward and jump up as high as you can, and focus on landing on the balls of your feet with your arms extended over your head. This is the sort of landing you'll need to stick to get a high long jump score. Once again, eight repetitions should do the trick.
The best way to train for the standing long jump is, of course, to perform the jump over and over and measure your progress. At least once per week, you should head to the pit and track your progress. Charting your improvements will help you stay motivated.