Let’s be honest, running on a treadmill is about as much fun as watching paint dry. So…
Let’s try and spice up your cardio workouts or, dare I say, mix in cardio with some resistance training. Wow…
That’s a crazy thought, but it might just might make things more fun.
Now, there are a bunch of cardio exercises you can do, such as:
- Jumping Jacks
- Mountain Climbers
- High Knees
- Lateral Slides
- Squat Thrusts
- And plenty of variations on all of the above
Yet, one exercise that is often over looked is skipping, also known as “jump rope” to my friends over the pond.
I’ve gotta hold my hands up, because I love skipping…
It’s great warm-up and you can also throw it into the workout-mixer with several other exercises.
The only problem is that there are a ton of people out there that have never learned to skip, or if they did, they didn’t learn particularly well.
Take UK Politician, George Osbourne for example…
Yeah, not pretty. So…
Let’s give you a quick tutorial on how to skip and make your workouts an ickle bit more fun.
Choose A Skipping Rope
There are several styles of skipping rope you can choose from:
1) Simple Nylon Rope (Slower and better for beginners)
2) Basic PVC (Beginner to advanced)
3) Speed Rope (Beginner to advanced)
I personally use the speed rope and I find it much-much faster and in my opinion, once you’ve got your rhythm sorted, much easier to use than the other options.
How Long Should Your Skipping Rope Be?
Hold each end of the rope and place your foot over the top of the rope.
From here pull the handles up towards your armpits. This is the ideal length that will allow you to jump the rope without it catching your feet.
If it’s too short, then you’ve made a boo-boo and you’ll need to get a longer rope!
However, if it’s too long, then you can easily fix this by either adding a couple of knots to the rope or cutting the ends of the rope (this depends on what type of rope you’ve got).
From here we wanna move on to some technique…
Finding Your Rhythm
There are a couple of ways you can find your rhythm.
1) Hold the skipping by the handles with the rope behind you. From here stand on your toes and drop back down to heals several times. Do this action several times and when you start getting used to the movement throw in a little jump, so your feet come off the ground by a couple of inches.
2) This is perhaps for those that are more familiar with the skipping rope, but you can also bounce from side to side switching your weight from left to right. This makes good practice for when you’re ready to skip alternating feet.
Don’t Make This Mistake
One of the most common mistakes among beginners is double a double jump in between each rope cycle. So…
Stand with your feet close together and practice jumping up and down from your toes.
Now, let’s bring in the rope and try and match that single jump with one rope cycle.
This may take some practice, but try not to get too frustrated! It will come soon enough :)
Once you’ve nailed this, then it’s time to bring in some tricks…
Left To Right
I’ve found that the best way to learn this basic “trick” is to first of all start by hopping on one foot WITHOUT the rope. As you hop make sure you don’t take the opposite leg too far off the ground (see picture). Repeat on both legs and then you’re ready to take things up a notch and bring in your rope…
Once again, start by using just one foot and ensure you don’t throw in that mistake of a double jump for each rope cycle. Try hopping on one foot for 2-3 cycles and then stop and switch leg. Repeat on the other side and if all goes well, it’s time to try alternate switching feet after each cycle. Fun times!
Putting It All Together
Here’s the full video from Shane at FightTips…
I hope you’ve enjoyed this article and it’s inspired you to go out and get a skipping rope :)
Seriously, skipping is much better than jogging on a treadmill. Go and try it!
Okay, take it easy and bye for now,