How to Perform a Jump Rope Workout

by Anna D

One of the best and cost effective exercise equipment that people can buy is the Jump Rope. This is also my favorite piece of equipment to add to the ATD Fitness Bootcamp workouts besides the kettlebells. When was the last time you ever picked up one up? Most people haven’t done this type of training since they were in grade school and I was guilty of that until I started learning how to use it for my work =outs. I used to not like them because I am not very coordinated especially if the whole thing has to move around me and I have to control it. But, I found that doing a jump rope workout is very effective when it comes to getting a great cardiovascular exercise and losing weight. Come to think of it, this is big part of professional boxers’ training because they use it to increase their cardiovascular endurance and get fit. So, if you haven’t used it in awhile, this would be a good time to start especially if your goal is to lose some stubborn fat.

Why You Should Take Up Jump Rope Training

This type of training accelerates your heart rate higher than running at a steady state or jogging because you can control whether you want to run faster or slower but the rope can come back very quickly under your feet. You are also using more energy when you jump with both feet because you are basically lifting your whole body off the ground compared with one foot at a time during running. You are also using your hands while you’re holding the rope handles which adds more work to your workout. Some jump ropes varieties even come with a handle that has added weight to it for more resitance. This added work means more calories burned for you.

jump-rope-tricks[I always think of kids having fun with the jump rope and it’s amazing how we don’t realize how great of a workout it really is.]

Don’t Make these Mistakes When Using the Jump Rope

You might think that this type of training is self-explanatory and not many personal trainers in Concord use this on their clients or know the benefits of this amazingly simple tool. However, I do see a lot of mistakes that people make when using the jump rope for the first time especially if they haven’t used one since grade school. The first thing you can do is to make sure that you keep your elbows close to the side of your body with your upper arms sort of stuck to your rib cage. Some people make the mistake of extending it out to the side which shortens the rope. When you make this mistake, the rope gets caught in between your feet or hits your lower legs instead of going underneath them. The next common mistake is jumping twice after the rope goes through your feet. You should only jump once when the rope goes under your feet. Double jumping is not necessary and a waste of energy. Lastly, make sure you test the rope length against your height. To test for the appropriate length, step on the rope with one foot and hold the handles with your hands. The top of the handles should be at your arm pit and not higher. This will the perfect rope length for you.

The Jump Rope Workout Protocol

Now that you’ve learned how to use the jump rope properly and how you can benefit from such a simple equipment, here is a sample workout that you can do anywhere at anytime. The workout is designed with alternating high intensity and low intensity intervals which is formally called High Intensity Interval Training or HIIT. HIIT is very effective for fat loss. The first step is to warm-up with a light jog, running in place, or jumping jacks for at least 3 minutes. Then, jump rope for 30 seconds followed with 30 seconds of a light jog to recover. This is one interval. Repeat the interval sequence for another 6-8 rounds for a full workout. Be sure to perform a cool down period once you’re done with your workout. To take this to the next level, you can increase the time that you use the jump rope, decrease your recovery time (the light jog part), jump rope at a faster speed or perform more interval rounds.

Jump rope training is the cheaper, more effective way to get cardiovascular training and lose fat at the same time. You can also substitute jump ropes for running on some days when you don’t feel like running. Adding this training to your routine can help you enjoy your workouts even more and burn more calories in the long run. Lastly, make sure you prioritize strength training before doing any cardiovascular activity.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Darrin May 7, 2010 at 9:37 am

Is there anything specific I should look for in a jump rope? I’ve been thinking of picking one up for a while and don’t know if I should just grab the first one I find at Target.

Anna_d May 7, 2010 at 9:41 am

Darrin, I like the GoFit brand and you can get it at Target. GoFit also has adjustable length so that’s why I like it. If you can’t find it, look for the ones that are weighted. This makes the rope heavier and easier to control. So, look for weighted and adjustable length. Otherwise, you’ll be set!


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