Skipping is a great way to boost your cardiovascular fitness level and improve circulation. It is an inexpensive, highly portable way you can get an intense total-body workout. Skipping rope is also a real calorie burner; in just 15 minutes you can burn more calories than jogging for the same length of time. Skipping Rope burns about 16 calories a minute – add some moves or speed up a little and you’ll burn even more. It requires more muscle power than you might imagine, particularly in your calves, buttocks, arms and shoulders, especially when you move past basic skipping into more advanced techniques like crossovers, double jumps, triple jumps, one leg at time and backward skipping.
I have incorporated skipping into many of my fitness workout routines
Skipping strengthens your muscles and bones, improves your coordination and rhythm and increases your flexibility. Skipping can also improve joint health if done properly. Try to find a surface for your jumping that won’t be that hard on your feet and ankles. Some of the shock absorbing surfaces are exercise mat, outdoor track, tennis court, or wooden floor. Athletic shoes designed for aerobics or cross training are good choices for this type of fitness training.
There are all kinds of different skipping ropes – leather ropes, weighted ropes, plastic ropes, etc. I am using a light plastic speed rope that cost £10. A quick tip for buying the right length of rope is the step test. If you step with one foot on the rope right in the middle, then the handless should be at armpit height.
If you have never skipped before, it might be a little bit frustrating at first before you get the hang of it. I started to skip last summer and I was really bad at first, but it doesn’t take a long time to get better, so don’t give up after the first or second try.
To begin, bend your elbows, keeping your arms close to your body. Using your wrists, swing the rope. Your arms shouldn’t move. Jump just enough to clear the rope, which should only lightly impact the floor, making a soft little “tat” sound. Jump and land on the balls of your feet, letting your heels just touch the floor. Don’t lock your knees but don’t bend them either. If you keep them “soft,” they will absorb very little impact. Your calves should absorb the impact. This is what makes skipping easier on your knees than jogging.