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Jump Rope Your Way to Buff

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Jumping rope is an excellent calorie-burning exercise, which can help you achieve or maintain a healthy body weight -- and tone up. Harvard Health Publications reports that a 155-pound person burns 372 calories in just 30 minutes jumping rope. While jumping rope may seem mundane, changing up your jump rope routine regularly can help break monotony -- and will work a variety of muscle groups to improve your physique.

1. Basic Single Jumps

One of the most basic ways to jump rope is to complete basic single jumps, jumping over your rope with both feet at one time. Speed up and slow down your jumping pace to complete interval training, or choose one pace to achieve steady-state aerobic exercise.

2. Basic Backward Jumps

Backward jumps are similar to basic single jumps. However, instead of swinging your jump rope around your body in a forward motion, you reverse the rope swing to go backward around your body before each jump.

3. Side to Side


To change things up a bit and work different muscle groups, alter your feet movements to complete side-to-side jumping. During this exercise, instead of jumping just up and down, you'll jump from side to side with both feet at one time.

4. Front to Back


Front-to-back jumping is similar to side-to-side jumping, but your feet move forward and backward during jumps instead of side-to-side. By switching up your jumping routine, you'll work a variety of muscle groups and maximize results.

5. Sprint Jumping

Perform sprint jumping by jogging rapidly in place while jumping rope, jumping with one foot at a time. You can alternate slow jumps with sprint jumping to achieve the benefits of interval training. You may also jog, while jumping rope, in a forward motion instead of in jogging in place. Then jog backwards to your original position and repeat.

6. Side Straddle Jumps

To complete side straddle jumps, alternate jumping with your feet and legs next to each other, with your legs spread apart in a straddle position. This leg motion is similar to performing jumping jacks, but with a jump rope.

7. High-Knees Jumping

High-knee jumps are similar to jogging in place while jumping rope, but you'll lift your knees slightly higher. Aim to lift your knees as high as you can up toward the ceiling, one at a time, while jogging in place and feel the burn.

8. Butt Kick Jumps


To complete butt-kick jumps, jog in place while jumping rope -- but touch each foot to your butt during jumps.

9. Scissor Step Jumps


Perform scissor step jumps by placing one leg in front of your body and one leg behind your body. During each jump, move the leg that was in front on your body behind your body, and the leg that was behind to the front -- in a scissors-like motion.

10. Jumping on One Foot

Instead of jumping rope with both feet at the same time, try single-leg jumps by hopping on just your right leg. When that leg starts to fatigue, switch it up and jump on just your left foot.

11. Circle Jumps

Complete circle jumps, or jumping in a circle, by slowly jumping from one spot to another spot on the floor to move your whole body around in a circle motion. You can also hop on just one foot in a circle motion across the floor, then do the same thing while hopping on the other foot.

12. Double Jumps

Double jumps can be difficult, because instead of swinging the jump rope around your body one time during each jump, you'll swing the rope around your body two times before each jump. Therefore, while your jumping speed may remain the same, your arms have to move twice as fast.

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An experienced health, nutrition and fitness writer, Erin Coleman is a registered and licensed dietitian and holds a dietetics degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She also has worked as a clinical dietitian and health educator in outpatient settings. Erin's work is published on popular health websites, such as TheNest.com and J

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