One of the greatest things about the jump rope is its versatility. There are so many unique ways to incorporate this simple training tool into your workout.
The question is – how exactly do you get started?
Assuming you’ve been convinced that the benefits of jumping rope are too great to pass up on, you might fall into one of a few categories.
Maybe you already have a training routine that’s working for you and you just want to figure out how to incorporate the jump rope. Maybe you’re starting from scratch and want to completely build your workouts around the jump rope. Or perhaps you’re just not sure yet what you want to do yet.
No matter where you fall on the spectrum, there’s room for the jump rope. In this post I’m going to highlight 5 simple ways you can incorporate the jump rope into your workout. Let’s dig in.
1 – At the beginning of your workout (as a warm-up)
OK so this one may not be too profound, but it’s the perfect place to start.
No matter what your current training routine looks like (or doesn’t look like), adding a bit of skipping before your workout is the easiest way to get started.
We’ve already talked about the importance of incorporating a warm-up before your workout. And I’ve even given you a full warm-up template that you can use to construct the perfect warm-up.
But if you’re looking for a quick start, just do this: before your next workout, start with 2-3 minutes of light rope jumping.
The goal is to get your heart rate up and your blood flowing.
Keep changing up your pace – mix light jumping with some quick bursts of speed – and play around with a few different variations like criss crosses, boxer steps, and scissor jumps to get the full body engaged.
Ninja Tip: Not sure how long to spend on your warm-up? Here’s what I do: since I jump to music, I will choose a song that’s about 3-5 minutes long and I make sure to jump for the entire duration of the song.
2 – In between your sets
If you already have a training routine in place, but you’re tight on time, then this is one of the best ways to introduce the jump rope into your routine.
There are two ways I like to do this…
The first is to simply add a light jump rope session in between each and every set of my workout. So if I’m doing five sets of push-ups, I’ll spend 60 seconds jumping rope in between each set.
This is a great way to actively rest between your sets so you’re not allowing your body to fully recover from set to set.
The second way you can do it is to add a quick max-effort jump rope session in between your sets. This is very different from active rest. Your focus should be to go 30 seconds all-out in between your sets.
What this does is it spikes your heart rate and adds a unique, challenging twist to your workouts. Really powerful stuff.
Ninja Tip: if you want to take this to the next level, try using a heavy jump rope. One of the best ones you can use is the 1.0 lb Intensity cable offered in the Crossrope Burn Set. This rope will easily 10X the effectiveness of your workout.
3 – At the end of your workout (as a finisher)
Workout finishers have been around for a long time, but I’ve seen very few people take advantage of the jump rope here.
A workout finisher is essentially a quick and intense set performed at the end of any workout. It’s designed to push you and your muscles way outside the comfort zone.
It’s great for maximizing fatigue and adding an extra layer of satisfaction.
One of the best ways to use the jump rope as a workout finisher is to put together a quick little HIIT session to end your workout. Here’s a sample of some jump rope speed work I like to use after some of my strength workouts:
Press play to watch the video.
Ninja Tip: a heavy jump rope will 10X the effectiveness of a workout finisher. Check out the the 1.0 lb Intensity cable offered in the Crossrope Burn Set
4 – On off days (for active rest)
If your idea of a rest day is laying motionless on the couch and watching re-runs of Seinfeld, then you might want to experiment with the idea of active rest.
We already touched on it briefly in point #2, but active rest on your off-days is amazing for recovery. It boosts blood flow which is essential for repairing broken-down tissue.
The jump rope is a great active rest tool because it allows you to determine your intensity level and it can be used anywhere – meaning you don’t have to go back to the gym on your off days.
The trick to using the jump rope on your off days is to keep your sessions longer and on the lower end of the intensity scale. You definitely don’t want to be fatiguing yourself. 10-15 minutes of very light jumping to your favorite tunes should do the trick.
Ninja Tip: I like to use my light PVC rope for active rest because it ensures that I keep fatigue at a minimum and allows me to freestyle a bit (you gotta have fun on your off-days).
5 – As part of a circuit
If you’re the creative type and you like to throw in a lot of different elements and training tools into your workouts, then adding a jump rope into the mix should be the next logical step.
The jump rope serves as a cool addition to any circuit.
It adds a unique cardiovascular boost to your workouts and, if you choose to use a heavy jump rope, it can add a really powerful upper body strengthening element as well.
It’s also versatile in the sense that you can use it anywhere. So if you want to run your circuit outdoors and mix and match jump rope sprints with pull-ups on the tree in the backyard, you can absolutely do that.
One of my favorite ways of using the jump rope is mixing it into a circuit with bodyweight exercises. Here’s an example of a jump rope-bodyweight workout I did not too long ago as part of a challenge:
Bonus: Just crush it
OK, so you’re not really sure which one of the above to choose…
Or maybe you’re short on time and don’t have much room to work with.
Or maybe you’re stuck in your hotel room on a rainy day and just happened to pack your jump rope in your suitcase (good for you).
Then this one is for you: just crush it.
Grab a jump rope, find a spot that offers enough space (not hard to find), set your timer for 5-10 minutes, and just crush as many rotations as you can in that time span.
Heavier ropes help here big time because they engage the full body, but they’re not necessary. Any jump rope pushed to max RPMs can offer great benefits.
So that’s it.
You’ve got 5 (scratch that – 6) simple and somewhat unique ways to incorporate the jump rope into your routine.
Which one of these methods are you already using? And which one are you going to add to the mix? Let me know in the comments below!