Muscles Targeted: The jump rope exercise is the perfect cardio exercise to do if your goal is to burn excess body fat, lose weight and really tone up your entire body. The key to this exercise is the fact that you will be working all the major muscle groups on your body. When you can recruit all the big muscles, you will simply burn more calories during your workout. Think about it for a moment, if you do the stationary bike you’re only working your legs and lower body. Jogging only works your legs and lower body also. Well, when you’re jumping rope you really recruit your upper and lower body which makes this exercise a great total full-body workout. You work your forearms, biceps, chest, back, calves and legs. Another exercise that does this is the elliptical machine but you need a lot of money to buy one of these machines and you need the space in your house. The jump rope is truly portable and only costs around $10, so it’s the perfect cardio exercise to choose for a low cost, high calorie burning workout that you can do virtually anywhere. A lot of people don’t like going to the gym, so they want something they can do in the convenience of their own homes. Just grab your jump rope and head into your living room, spare bedroom or even your garage. Pull the cars out and you can create the perfect jump rope studio for doing some intense, fat burning workouts!
Exercise Advice: In this jump rope workout, you will be doing a lateral style training routine where you will jump rope moving sideways. Start by jumping rope at a normal pace and slowly start moving your body laterally to the right for about 10-15 yards. You will really need to focus on jumping over the rope so you might want to take higher steps to ensure the rope passes under your feet. After going 10-15 yards to the right, switch directions and come back to the left another 10-15 yards to complete one full set. The more you progress, the faster you want to jump rope in order to create a very intense routine. The great thing about jumping laterally, is that is targets a different area of your legs. The outer legs get worked and you also work on your agility since your actually moving while jumping rope and you’re not simply staying in the same spot. This takes some time to master, so don’t get discouraged if you have issues for the first few times you attempt this. You should always go nice and slow and really focus on each step you make as you move laterally from side to side.
Things To Avoid: Since this is an advanced jump rope workout, you want to focus on performing this exercise routine at a slow tempo to make sure the technique is correct and that you don’t injure yourself. This is very important for this specific workout since you will be moving laterally from left to right which makes the exercise a little more difficult than just standing in one spot jumping up and down. The length of the jump rope is also very important. You want to stand on the middle of the rope with both feet together and pull the handles up as far as they can go. The handles should come up to just about arm pit height for the best length. Adjust the rope as needed and then try out the jump rope. You can keep adjusting it until you find a good length that will allow you to jump rope without having too much slack in the rope or not enough slack where the rope is too short and it barely pass under your feet. You will know if it’s too short right away since the jump rope will hit you right in the shins or lower legs and it will sting very bad!
Reps and Sets: The overall number of sets for this jump rope workout will be in the range of 10-15 depending on your fitness level. A full set is when you go laterally all the way to the right and then back to the left. You will want to rest for about 30-60 seconds after each full set. To make the set more intense, you can jump rope faster and try for about 90-95% intensity. You should only perform at this height level of intensity after fully warming up to make sure your muscles are warm and your body is ready to perform the exercise at a very fast pace. The overall time for this workout should be in the range of 20-30 minutes and you should do anywhere from 4-6 cardio sessions per week for optimal fat burning results. If you really want to burn a lot of fat, try doing this cardio workout first thing in the morning after you wake-up. You can have a scoop of protein powder in water or a BCAA (branched chain amino acid) supplement before your session to make sure to supply your muscles with protein and amino acid for an intense workout. You want to avoid eating any carbs since you want to focus on burning fat. If you eat carbs before your cardio workout, your body will burn the carbs for energy first before tapping into your fat stores. By eating protein and zero carbs, you give your muscles the amino acids needed to preserve lean tissue and optimize your body for burning up the excess fat stores. Doing jump rope for morning cardio is the ideal workout if your overall goal is to have a lean and ripped physique.
Other Exercises To Use: Along with this lateral side to side jump rope workout, you can combine pushups and jumping jacks for an even more intense workout. Do 1 set of jump rope going laterally all the way from right to left for 1 full set and then immediately do 20-30 pushups to complete the cycle. You can also do 20-30 sit-ups after the jump rope portion if you really want to target your stomach and your goal is to get shredded 6-pack abs. Make sure to rest for 30-60 seconds between each set to fully recover and drink enough water during this rest period to rehydrate properly.