Back to Basics
I don’t know about you, but I am always on the hunt for a new, effective workout to get my juices flowing and keep me tight and toned year round. But forget the pricey gym memberships, ever-expanding collection of dvds from the latest fitness guru or crash diets. Your next great hope could be a beloved childhood favorite. Skipping! It’s not just for boxers. Recalling your years of double dutch and criss-crossing could be the answer to shedding those pesky pounds and gaining coveted definition. Pop star Katy Perry is a fan and has the hot bod to prove it. Looks like Rocky Balboa had the right idea.
The British Skipping Rope Association (yes this is a thing) estimates that just ten minutes of skipping is equivalent to a 45-minute run. It is also akin to running a mile in 8 minutes. One hour of jumping rope is believed to burn up to 1300 calories.
Skipping is considered low impact and a lot friendlier on the joints than running.
Jump rope is a fantastic exercise for all ages because it can be done at any fitness level and at any pace.
The cost of the rope alone is practically negligible. Even if you go high end it still won’t put as huge a dent in your pocket as say, a treadmill.
The rope fits easily in even the smallest purse or carry-on so you have no excuse to miss another workout.
In it for the long haul
High performance athletes know that skipping is ideal for endurance and conditioning.
Does a body good
A jump rope routine is effective for both upper and lower body conditioning. It works the arms and abs and is excellent for developing thighs, shins and calf muscles. For even greater burn try a rope with weighted handles.
There’s another reason boxers swear by skipping. It helps improve flexibility, balance, coordination, footwork and agility.
Cardiovascular health also reaps the benefits of skipping as it improves heart rate and blood pressure.
Skipping is considered a bodyweight exercise which aids in improving bone density and warding off osteoporosis.
Not sure how to get started in an organized manner? Here’s a simple beginner routine to start from Builtlean.com.
Jumping rope is an awesome way to do interval training, whether you’re a beginner or a jump rope master. A simple routine to do as a beginner could look like this:
20-30 seconds of jumping
30-60 seconds of rest
Repeat 6-10 times
Make sure you give yourself enough recovery time between intervals to slow your heart rate and catch your breath. Start with fewer and shorter intervals with more rest time, and work your way up to doing more intervals for a longer period of time with less rest.
If you don’t have a timer or don’t want to pay attention to a clock, you can count 50 rope jumps and then rest until you’ve slowed your breathing rate to a comfortable level, then repeat.