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Do You Jump Rope? Workout for Beginning Jumpers

Maj Walpole Jumping Rope

My Navy buddy Dave Hunt, who created the CrossRope (a super system of weighted jump ropes and handles that are interchangeable for different workouts), helped create a jump-rope workout for us. I never had a system of jumping ropes. I would maybe try to jump during a song or replace a quick run with a 1-minute jump, but here are some ideas for you if you need something to do and have a little space or time to get it done.

Through all the fitness trends and fads, jumping rope continues to have a reputation as one of the best conditioning exercises you can include in your workouts. Unfortunately, it's a neglected exercise because many people aren't sure they are coordinated enough to do it.

Even if you are focused on running, swimming, or cycling, the jump rope is an excellent tool to incorporate for cross training with the additional benefits of coordination, quickness, agility, and much more.

If you are a beginner, learning to jump rope can take some patience. But if you take the right approach, it will become one of the most fun, engaging, effective and rewarding exercises in your arsenal. Also jumping rope is great for coordination and body awareness.

Here are some tips if you're ready to try your first jump rope workout:

  • Position your hands with 9-12 inches of your hip bone and aligned with your body on each side. Focus on rotating the rope with your wrists, not your elbows or shoulders.
  • Use a properly sized rope. Step on the rope with one foot and pull the handles up toward your shoulder. The top of the handles should be approximately at shoulder height.
  • Rotate the rope slowly at first. Bound only once per rotation (jumping twice per rotation will limit your future progress because you won't be able to increase the speed of the rope without tripping)
  • If you have access to one, using a weighted rope makes it significantly easier to learn timing and rhythm as a beginner, because of the rope feedback. (Important: A weighted rope, like the ones we have at Crossrope, is 1/2 pound or more with the weight in the rope, not the handles)

If you're still tripping up, you can try these drills to learn proper jumping technique.

The first beginner workout is about gaining confidence and consistency in technique. In each set, you'll try to get as few misses as possible. This is a simple workout for someone that already jumps, but should be just the right amount of challenge for a new jumper or anyone practicing technique.

Beginner workout 1

Set 1: 15 jumps, 30 second rest
Set 2: 25 jumps, 30 second rest
Set 3: 35 jumps, 30 second rest
Set 4: 25 jumps, 30 second rest
Set 5: 15 jumps, 30 second rest

If you miss, that's alright. Just continue jumping until you complete the total number for each set. The short rest intervals will keep your heart rate elevated so that you're getting a workout even while you learn.

If you're able to get through the first 3 sets with very few misses, increase the pace on sets 4 and 5.

Now, if you're still pretty new to jumping, but are able to string together jumps and breeze through the sets above, your next goal is to complete a workout with consistent intervals. Try this:

Beginner workout 2

Complete 2 rounds of:

Set 1: 30 seconds of jumping, 30 second rest
Set 2: 45 seconds of jumping, 45 second rest
Set 3: 1 minute of jumping, 1 minute rest
Set 4: 45 seconds of jumping, 45 second rest
Set 5: 30 seconds of jumping, 30 second rest

This 7-minute workout is quick and effective. It's something you can use for a warm up or a finisher.

Anyone can learn to jump rope. And once you do, it's a powerful exercise that has countless fitness benefits, no matter what your training goals are.

One of the best jump rope challenges I prefer is the 1 minute challenge with the heaviest of the rope CrossRope offers (3 lb rope / handles). See how many jumps you can get in 1 minute. It is a full sprint and as anaerobic as anything I have ever done.

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Contributor

Stew Smith works as a presenter and editorial board member with the Tactical Strength and Conditioning program of the National Strength and Conditioning Association and is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS). He has also written hundreds of articles on Military.com's Fitness Center that focus on a variety of fitness, nutritional, and tactical issues military members face throughout their career.

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