Jumping rope to lose weight was once the heart and soul of every athlete's workout program. Now it has withered away into oblivion, sidelined by newer, faster, and more convenient modes of working out. Strangely, even though skipping may seem like an easy and insignificant exercise, its effectiveness is highly underestimated.
When combined with other weight loss workouts, the end results can help lose more than 1000 lbs within 3 months. The act of jumping over a rope restricts the body posture to an erect angle, which is a boon for those who wish to strengthen their spinal column and the entire torso. It is also an excellent cardio workout which helps the heart pump more amounts of oxygenated blood.
Advantages of Jumping Rope for Weight Loss
Since skipping-rope is a complete body workout, it helps exercise all the muscles in the body, which in turn causes the body to become more flexible and less prone to injuries. However, irrespective of the advantages of any exercise, it is a matter of priority to warm up before starting any workout. The reason being that the body needs to adapt and prepare for the grueling workout is about to endure.
The muscles need to be flexed and warmed up so that they do not cramp, or tear, under the force and pressure of sudden muscular movements. The internal mechanism of the bodily muscles in akin to the internal parts of a machine, which need to be lubricated with oil in order to be able to function without causing friction and rusting. Once the body is warmed up through simple stretching exercises, you can begin with your exercise regime.
Facilitates Complete Body Workout
Jumping rope requires, that each and every part of the body participates in the workout. The swinging motion of the arms ensure that the shoulders, forearms, and biceps are utilized well. While the jumping motion ensures that the neck, and torso, stay aligned during the entire workout.
The thighs, calf muscles, and ankles help absorb the pressure from the jump and landing. The only other exercise which offers such advantages is swimming, which is also an full-body workout. The biggest advantage of skipping rope is that, it is an extremely affordable, convenient, self-sufficient, and efficient mode of body fitness.
These can be used indoors as well as outdoors, though sufficient space must be allotted for the rope and you to maneuver around each other properly. However, it is not feasible to jump rope on concrete flooring, as it is a bad pressure absorbent and would instead revert all the force onto the ankles, shin bone, and the knees.
This increases the chances of developing sprains, muscle and ligament tear. It is safer to exercise on wooden floors, trimmed lawns, or even on exercise mats or carpets, as these help the feet retain a strong grip, without absorbing excess pressure.
Since skipping is a cardio based exercise, it is the heart which receives ample amounts of exercise. It is a well-known fact that if the heart is healthy, the body remains fit too. The reason why skipping helps develop stamina is because it takes time for the body to muster enough strength to jump continuously for over 5 minutes.
Initially, for a beginner, the exercise will seem far too exerting and tedious, however with every other day, the individual's strength will increase. Which is why the number of jumps increase substantially, for instance.
- For beginners, the first day they will be able to perform skipping rope exercises continuously for about 3 - 5 minutes.
- They will need to take sets of jumps which should ideally contain at least 3 sets so as to complete 15 minutes of workout, while not including the breaks taken in-between each set.
- Gradually with every other day the total time of workout, must increase to 15 to 30 to 45 minutes.
- A 45-minute workout is more than sufficient to lose weight at a consistent rate, after which the individual can combine other exercises, such as lifting weights, performing crunches and walking on the treadmill so as to lose weight at a faster rate.
- At an average speed, skipping rope can help you lose 8 - 11 calories with every minute of continuous jumping. In case you accelerate the intensity of your jumps, you lose up to 15 - 20 calories per minute.
- When compiled with other exercises, jumping rope can help a 140 lb person burn 450 - 478 calories during a single 45-minute workout session.
Tones Body Muscles
You have to realize that skipping rope on a regular basis will naturally enhance the muscles in the body. This implies that the muscles on your calf, stomach and arms will become stronger, sleeker and more visible. This of course will not happen overnight and will take a few months for the muscles to reveal themselves. However the first thing you will notice, is that you will find yourself growing thinner.
The catch is that while the weight loss will not be remarkable during the first few weeks, your flab will definitely begin to reduce. Which means that you will begin to look slimmer even though your weight may not have fluctuated much. Eventually, once the flab has reduced substantially, your muscles will begin to develop further. You will also need to increase the number of skips per series, so as to accelerate the strenuousness of the exercise, in case you wish to continue losing weight.
DOs and DON'Ts of Jumping Rope
- Never begin an exercise, before warming up. You will need to perform some stretching exercises so that your muscles do not cramp up. Simple exercises, such as squats, toe-touches and torso bends, will suffice.
- Make sure that the rope is adjusted to suit your height. In order to check the length of the rope, you will need to lock the rope beneath your big toes, while the rope handles reach the middle of your torso. A rope which is longer or shorter that the mid torso length, will prevent you from jumping with ease.
- It is advisable that beginners, go in for a rope made of fiber or soft materials, as synthetic or plastic ones, tend to hit or scrape against the ankle bone and cause injury.
- A 45-minute workout session will require that you take at least three breaks in order to rest. Each break must be for 1 - 2 minutes and not more.
- Remember to keep yourself hydrated by sipping on water.
- Also in between breaks, try to stretch your muscles every now and then, so as to keep them from cramping.
- It's imperative that you stop jumping, the moment you begin to feel too exhausted or feel pain in your abdomen muscles. This is a sign that you have exceeded your stamina and need to stop for the day.
Jumping rope is an easy to practice and adaptable exercise. It can be combined with other exercises, or it can be the sole part of your workout program. Whichever the case, its benefits are plenty and results are rapid. This exercise is not time-consuming and can be done whenever you find yourself with some free leisurely time.
It does not show side effects like other workouts do, when stopped suddenly. Which means that you may choose not to jump rope for a few days or a week and you will not notice rapid weight gain. However, this would depend on how well you control your diet during the time when you have stopped working out.