Different Kinds of Jump Ropes

Skipping rope isn't just for kids anymore as more adults are turning to this youthful, heart-pumping exercise to burn calories and shed pounds. Trainers agree that jumping rope is a great approach to cardiovascular exercise, but how do you know what types of jump ropes are best suited for you?

Trainers agree that jumping rope is a great method of cardiovascular exercise.
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Jumping Rope Is Beneficial

Whether you're on a trampoline or playing a game of basketball, jumping is a great method of getting your heart rate up and challenging your body. Jumping rope specifically, however, has some additional health benefits.

According to the American Council on Exercise, these benefits include improved coordination, improved cognitive function and increased elasticity and resiliency of lower-leg muscles, leading to a reduced risk of lower-leg injuries. Be mindful that you aren't overdoing it, though — excessive jumping can lead to injury for some. Take time to warm up and cool down.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobics or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobics in order to maintain your weight. Since jumping rope is often considered a vigorous type of aerobic exercise, it provides an effective and efficient method for meeting those standards. Plus, with additional time spent jumping rope, it can also lead to weight loss.

Read more: List of Aerobic Workouts

Types of Jump Ropes

According to the American Heart Association, lack of equipment and resources can be a barrier to fitness for some. At-home workout machines and gym memberships can be quite expensive, and depending on where you live, a fitness facility may not be very accessible.

This is why jumping rope is an excellent option, as jump ropes are relatively affordable and you can do it anywhere — in your driveway, at the park and so on — and they are easy to pack with you when you travel. Plus, there are several popular jump rope options to choose from based on your preferences.

1. Speed Jump Rope

A well-made speed rope can be a beginner's best friend and is one of the three most common ropes you see in a gym setting. Speed ropes are lightweight, durable, easy to take anywhere and allow you to work on your agility, footwork, quickness and endurance.

Because speed ropes are so light, they are quiet and great for doing more advanced skipping rope exercises like the double-under. The only catch is they tangle easily, so make sure you take care when you store your speed rope in between workouts.

2. Beaded Jump Rope

A beaded jump rope is a bit more clunky than the speed rope, but it doesn't tangle as easily. The beaded rope is also slightly heavier than the speed rope, but not by much.

Beaded jump ropes are commonly used in children's physical education classes because they are often bright, fun and colorful, but adults enjoy using them as well. When the beads make contact with the ground after each twirl, they make a rhythmic sound, which can be either helpful or a distraction based on your preferences.

3. Weighted Jump Rope

A weighted jump rope is a more advanced option that can lead to a higher calorie burn. With options ranging from 1 to 6 pounds, you can select a rope that best suits your fitness level. When this extra weight is added, your upper body gets a more intense workout as well with each skip of the rope.

Many athletes use a weighted jump rope, as it is a sure-fire way to get a challenging workout. The downside is that they're a little bit more expensive, but they last a long time and are well worth the investment.

Read more: Weighted Jump Rope Vs. Speed Rope

Types of Skipping Rope Exercises

There are many types of skipping rope exercises to try. The more you know, the more variation you can add to really personalize your workout.

Move 1: Basic Jump

The most basic of skipping rope exercises, this is a great one to try as either a steady warmup or in faster, timed intervals with intensity.

  1. Start with one rope handle in each hand, with the rope resting on the ground behind your feet.
  2. Swing the rope over your head to the front side of your body and gently jump off the ground with both feet, swinging the rope under and then landing on both feet at the same time.
  3. Repeat for your desired amount of time.

Move 2: Side-to-Side Jump

This is a fun variation of the basic jump that will keep you both entertained and sweaty.

  1. Start with one rope handle in each hand, with the rope resting on the ground behind your feet.
  2. Swing the rope over your head to the front side of your body and gently jump off the ground with both feet, moving laterally to the right while swinging the rope under and landing on both feet at the same time.
  3. On the next swing, hop to the left.
  4. Repeat back and forth, right to left like this, for your desired amount of time.

Move 3: Single Leg Jump

This jump rope variation helps isolate the leg muscles on one side of your body.

  1. Start with one rope handle in each hand, with the rope resting on the ground behind your feet.
  2. Stand on your right foot only by bending your left knee and drawing your left foot up toward you buttocks. Keep your left foot in this position so it avoids snagging the jump rope as you begin the move.
  3. Swing the rope over your head to the front side of your body and gently jump off the ground with your right foot, swinging the rope under and landing on your right foot only.
  4. Repeat on the right foot for your desired amount of time and then start on your left foot.

Read more: Can Jumping Rope Replace Running?

Move 4: Double-Under Jump

The double-under is a more advanced move, but it can be quite rewarding to master.

  1. Start with one rope handle in each hand, with the rope resting on the ground behind your feet.
  2. Start doing the basic jump move on repeat until you work up some momentum.
  3. When you're ready and have some momentum going, jump off the ground with both feet and swing the rope over your head and under your feet two times before landing on both feet. The wrists and arms will need to move quickly for this move to happen, but it's a lot of fun once you get it down.
  4. Repeat for your desired amount of time.
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