Jumping Rope: Kids Play or Serious Fitness Workout?

jumperAs I prepare for a new Guinness World Weightlifting Record attempt in 2013, I continue to push my limit for high intensity interval training and ways to increase lactic acid tolerance. A surprise finding on the road to new activities is jumping rope!

Most people have jumped rope in their neighborhood as kids. Most everyone quits by the time they reach their teen years and never think about the activity again.

End of story, not really!

In my case, I never remember even jumping rope as a kid, so when I first started looking into it, I didn’t even know how to skip!

Surprise, surprise!

It’s much harder than you think and in an interval to interval comparison it burns more calories than running!

Getting Started

  1. Buy a good rope:  Do yourself a favor and purchase a high quality bearing loaded jump rope. A good jump rope can be purchased for about $25.00 and its definitely worth it. I started our purchasing a rope from a popular US mass retailer for about $12 and got what I paid for.
  2. Size your rope properly: There are many sizing charts on the internet for proper sizing. Trust me, this is very important. Search the internet for proper sizing charts, read and measure so you purchase the correct length or you will get frustrated with the wrong size rope
  3. If you are inexperienced, search the internet for informative videos: As with sizing, there are many videos on YouTube which show proper technique, getting started and even pre-jump stretching.
  4. Start slow and stretch: Trust me, even if you were the 3rd grade jumping champion – start slow, start with short 30 or 60 second intervals, stretch and be prepared to be sore for the first few weeks.

Here are a few benefits of jumping rope:

Burning calories: Depending on how long and fast you skip you can burn more calories jumping rope than running. The actual calories burned per minute vary by a number of factors and research sources, but safe to say you can burn anywhere between 300 and 1000 calories over an hour depending on duration, speed, weight and interval.

Cardiovascular: Trust me, jumping rope in 3 to 4 minute intervals will get your heart rate up quicker and much higher than running.  The added benefit is that its not as hard on your body as running.

Muscle tone: Jumping rope is great full body movement – just look at the majority of boxers and MMA competitors and one can easily see the benefits of jumping rope.

As with anything jumping rope is not for everyone. but it is a low cost alternative for developing a great fitness and toning regiment!

[Guest post by Walter Urban. For more information on Walter Urban and his Guinness World Record activities visit]

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