When it comes to cardiovascular fitness, running will probably never get replaced. You can pretty much run anywhere, anyplace and at any time. But there are times when going for a run just isn’t convenient. Like maybe it’s raining or snowing. It’s times like these when jumping rope is a great alternative; what’s more, it comes pretty close to being a great replacement.
Don’t kid yourself. Jumping rope is both a physical and mental workout of the best kind. You need to concentrate so you don’t trip up on the rope and it takes focus to maintain your rhythm and speed. Master those two aspects and you’re off and … jumping!
Based on what I just said, it’s probably a no-brainer that jumping rope can improve your cardiovascular fitness and endurance, in addition to your balance and agility. Oh, and don’t forget that skipping rope will increase your muscular strength, endurance, and burn calories. It’s just an all-around good workout.
Benefits of Jump Roping
I know there are some out there who still think jumping rope is for girls. I guarantee you guys will be the first ones to fall down. I got news for you: Jumping rope, points out mensfitness.com, is not only easy on the knees but comes with many benefits:
Good for your ABC’s – That’s Agility, Balance and Coordination. Ever wonder why boxers were (and still are) jumping rope all the time? Because it builds stamina and foot speed. Don’t believe me” Check out Sugar Ray Robinson who was not only the best pound-for-pound boxer ever but was a virtual master with a jump rope. You don’t have to be a boxer to improve your reflexes, says expertboxing.com. Just study the jump rope variations and get to work. The various foot movement patterns demand coordination, agility and quick reflexes.
Jumping Rope Builds Fitness Fast – Rope jumping is like interval training: You can skip slowly for 60 seconds and alternate with skipping fast. You see a lot of folks in the gym these days jumping rope in between weightlifting sets. SportsMedicine.com says this is “an efficient whole-body workout that incorporates both cardiovascular endurance and muscular strength in one session.” Who am I to disagree? So grab a rope already!
Bonus: Skipping Rope Burns Calories – Depending on your skill level and speed, remarks ExpertBoxing.com, you can burn from 10 to 15 calories a minute by jumping rope! Faster rope jumpers can burn calories at a rate similar to running.
It’s All in the Wrists
Proper technique is what you need for a safe and effective workout. In no particular order:
- While jumping you should have good posture. Keep the stomach in, your shoulders relaxed and elbows in and keep the upper body movement to a minimum.
- Control the rope with your wrists, not your arms.
- When I say maintain good posture it doesn’t mean be rigid like a tent pole. Keep your knees slightly bent while jumping and bounce softly up and down on your toes.
- You’re not doing the high jump! Your feet should leave the floor just enough to allow the rope to pass under.
That’s all it takes! Music is nice because it helps you maintain your rhythm. Speed, coordination and losing weight at the same time. Jumping rope is a perfect addition to a fitness routine.
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