Is Jumping Rope a Good Workout ?
Does a bear $h*t in the woods?
Does Pat Flynn have more obnoxious tank tops than any adult should ever own?
Does the Secret Service Snatch Test suck?
There are some truths we can all agree on.
The resounding YES to the question, “Is jumping rope a good workout?” should definitely be one of them.
I’ll briefly cover 6 reasons why jumping rope is a good workout, but then I’m going to move on to what you really want to know when you consider adding jump rope to your routine:
- How to use a jump rope to maximize your minimalist workouts
- How to use a jump rope to accelerate fat loss
Jumping rope IS a good workout.
- Efficient calorie-burn — It’s estimated to burn about 10 calories in a minute. You can use it on the endurance end of the spectrum OR you can ramp-up fat burn by using it in the ways I’ll be detailing below.
- Builds coordination & athleticism — Unlike other forms of cardio (elliptical trainers, for instance), jumping rope requires timing and quickness. It’s a fluid, yet snappy, full-body coordinated effort.
- It’s a skill to train — Because jumping rope in an athletic endeavor, it’s a skill to be trained. From basic hops to fancy footwork to triple-unders, the levels of skill development are endless. Jumping rope provides a challenge for the mind, the body, & the creative spirit!
- It’s anti-boring — Due to #3, jumping rope is basically the opposite of “boring cardio” (and even with better results). Jump fast, jump slow, jump big, jump weird, jump with a weighted rope, jump with a weighted vest, jump to the side, jump on one leg…you get the picture.
- It’s accessible — Not only is a jump rope itself financially accessible (a decent one is the price of a hopefully-a-bit-better-than-“decent” cup of coffee), but the exercise of jumping rope is physically accessible for most people. It’s a low-impact activity, and the intensity can easily be increased or decreased based on ability or preference. One of the limiting factors–actual skill–can even be temporarily eased by jumping with a pretend rope. (More on this below.)
- Calves — ‘Nuff said.
If you just went off right now, grabbed a cheap jump rope and got to work, you’d do yourself well. but I’m going to give you some specific protocols to get you off on the right foot. (Yep. That was a pun.)
First, understand that…
Kettlebells + Jump Rope = LOVE
Never in my 27 years of life have I ever known a pair to be better suited for one another than kettlebells and jump ropes. They are a match made in heaven.
If you have these two tools, you’ll be like a Jedi with a light saber, annihilating evil adipose tissue, sparing the sinewy muscles to forge a stronger Jedi militia, ever growing in size and number.
Swinging kettlebells and jumping rope are complementary exercises. While they each highlight a different movement pattern (hip hinge/long jump versus [shallow] squat/vertical jump), they both develop functional mechanics while engaging a large proportion of the body’s muscles.
You reap the reward of a physique that is as useful as it is chiseled.
Is jumping rope a good workout? Of course it is. Especially if you program it thoughtfully.
Here’s HOW to use jumping rope to maximize your minimalist workouts & to accelerate your fat loss results:
At the beginning of your workout…
- Practice skill work as your warm-up. Since you’re fresh, it’s a great time to develop your skills. Pick a type of jump to practice and just practice for 5 minutes. You’ll feel mentally set and physically energized for strength-training. (The only exception to this, depending on your level of conditioning, would be something like double-unders. Don’t zap yourself with something super-intense right away; instead, program this practice for another session.)
- Do some warm-up jumping paired with kettlebell swings. Better yet, jump, swing, and plank for a true “old school lead-in“: 30-60s two-hand swings, 30-60s plank hold, 30-60s rope-skipping.
^ That’s the throwback video. Here‘s a more recent one.
In the meat of your workout…
- Sprinkle in sets of jumps (by time or reps) between other main moves. You’ll keep your heart rate up to increase calorie burn. If you add jumping rope to days focused on heavy upper-body lifts, you will have yourself a nice circuit without sacrificing the integrity of your strength sessions.
- Superset jumping rope with lower body lifts. The mix of slow & controlled with quick & bouncy gives a well-rounded burn.
- Use it as a finisher! Try for 5-minutes of fury.
Finally, as a standalone workout or as a complement to your lifting sessions…
- Use it for endurance: Jump rope for a total of 10 minutes, broken into as few sets of jumps as possible. Start with about 1-2 minutes of steady jumping followed by a short reset. Repeat.
- For a great session of high-intensity interval training (or HIIT as the kids like to call it), go all-out with your max-effort jump style for intervals of 20-30s, followed by 10-30s of rest.
- This might be squat jack jumps, double-unders, or just super-speedy hops. OR
- This might be with a weighted rope or weighted vest for increased muscle recruitment.
- Try it paired with any or all of the moves from “The 5 Best Kettlebell Exercises for Faster Fat Loss.”
- Toss jump roping into your fitness routine by accumulating a certain amount of time or reps all throughout the day. Beginners could start with 500, while more advanced could aim for 1000 reps. Or, just try for 10 minutes total. (Every other day is a good place to start.)
- TRY THIS 5-MINUTE SWEATY as a standalone or an add-on to your gym time today!
Then, you can pull from personal experience if anyone should ever ask you, Is jumping rope a good workout?
Use a real jump rope or a pretend one. I find I trip less when I use the pretend one, but…your call.
- standard jumps
- scissor jumps
- running man jumps
- jack jumps
- standard jumps w/ *1 double-under every 5-10 standard jumps (based on ability)
- Repeat 2-5.
*If you CAN jump a real rope but can’t do double-unders, consider dropping your rope and pretending for this set.
P.S. To witness two equally-impressive sides of jumping rope, YouTube “competitive jump roping” and then “Floyd Mayweather jump roping.”
P.P.S. Did you hear about Pat’s sale? He’s got a sale. You can find out more on his Secret Facebook Page. Or just go straight for the jugular of all your fat-loss obstacles by joining his Inner Circle.