We have a question for you here at Overland Park Boot Camp…what burns more calories than running, is more fun and something you can do with your kids?
The answer, if you didn’t know already, is jumping with a rope. It’s a great way to get fit, build up your cardio and lose weight (around 26 calories a minute). Exercising with a rope could even improve your posture, balance and co-ordination, according to the fitness experts out there. What’s not to like?
A rope isn’t expensive to buy if you want to do it at home and it hardly involves a lot of organization – or space. Of course, as well as being a workout in its own right, jumping rope can also be a great warm up activity prior to a gym session or other physical activity.
What body parts are involved when jumping rope?
- Your lower body is obviously coming into it here – calves, thighs, feet (you’re on your toes the whole time)
- Your cardio system is getting a good work out, just as if you were running
- Your back is remaining upright and your shoulders pushed back
Some people are put off the idea of jumping with a rope because of the stress it puts on the knees, ankles and hips. But, provided you do it properly, it can actually have less of an impact on these joints than jogging can.
If you’re just starting out jumping rope it’s a good idea to buy a beaded rope as it’s far easier to control than the more lightweight versions. Always remember too to wear proper running shoes and NEVER jump on a carpet, grass or even asphalt. This is because it’s easy to slip and twist an ankle or fall over. The best places to jump are on your exercise mat or a wooden floor.
Remember to give yourself plenty of room too – around six feet in front, four to the sides and at least 10 inches above your head.
Here’s some advice on jumping from Texas PE teacher Roger Crozier who runs a competitive jump rope team:
“The real key is to make sure you jump properly. Stay high on the toes. When you walk or run, you impact your heel. With rope jumping you stay high on your toes and use your body’s natural shock absorbers.
“Beginners usually jump higher than necessary. With practice, you shouldn’t come more than one inch off the floor.”
Skills involved in jumping rope
- Double jumps
- Crossing/uncrossing arms
- Sprinting on the spot
Okay – so, are you ready? That’s certainly put us in the mood for a quick rope blast here at Overland Park Boot Camp.