During your first weeks of jumping rope you don’t have to stress about finding the perfect jump-rope. You can lend one from a friend, buy a simple cheap one, or do what I did when I first got started and go get yourself a simple piece of rope from a hardwood store (check out the video below for more details). The most important thing in the beginning is that the length of your rope is properly adjusted. To measure your rope, stand on the middle of it with one foot and pull the ends of it straight up. They should reach somewhere between your shoulders and armpits.
Weighted rope advantages
If you keep enjoying jumping rope and you feel like you want an upgrade, the best option is to move to a weighted rope. Quality weighted ropes aren’t cheap but they’re the way to go if you want to keep progressing and challenging yourself.
1. Progressive overload
As you get used to the initial weighted rope you can move on to a heavier one. This way you can keep challenging your body to get stronger, fitter and leaner!
2. Whole-body activation
A weighted rope will increase muscle activation in your back, shoulders and arms, making it a challenging exercise for your whole body.
3. Ideal for Super Circuit Training
Weighted jump-ropes are a great exercise to incorporate into bodyweight Super Circuit workouts (circuits that alter high-intensity exercises such as jumping rope with bodyweight strength-oriented exercises). A weighted jumping rope will make your circuits a lot more arduous by increasing your heart-rate and the accumulation of fatigue in your upper body muscles. Challenging both the muscular and cardiovascular systems is also the best way to maximize fat-burning during short workouts.
My favorite jumping rope – Crossrope
After having tried a lot of jump-ropes over the last years (show all my ropes) the Crossrope jumping rope has become my standard two-handled rope-spinning weapon of choice. Those who have been watching this channel long enough know that I don’t mention a product unless I’ve tested and sweated it extensively myself. I first tried this jump-rope two years ago. Since then I’ve switched through a lot of different ropes but I always ended up going back going back to Crossropes. No, they’re not cheap… but besides the better quality, I’ve found that when building new habits, spending a bit more money on some things gets you more invested in them.
Just like all jumping ropes, the Crossrope will eventually begin decaying as well. Still, I find that Crossropes have a decent lifespan. I’ve had my oldest Crossrope for more than two years and I’ve been using them extensively since both I and my trainees workout with them on a daily basis. As you see the coating is worn out at the middle of the rope but I don’t see a reason why to replace them yet.
- Versatility : Crossropes come with different weighted ropes and have a quick release mechanism that allows you to switch from a lighter to a heavier rope in a few seconds. I like to start my warm-up set with the ¼ lbs light rope and then progress to the heavier ½ lbs rope which I’ll use for the rest of my workout and super-circuits.
- Improve your jump-rope skills faster: Although you might think the opposite makes sense, a weighted rope makes it easier to learn and improve your jump-rope skills. Light jumping-ropes (such as plastic jump-ropes) make it more difficult to time your jump as the rope is about to pass underneath you. This is because you can’t feel them rotating around your body and sense their location. For a rookie or someone looking to learn some tricks, this can cause trip-ups and frustration. Weighted ropes with the extra weight placed in the rope (instead of the handle) give you a better feeling of where the rope is in space as they’re spinning around you. They can also spin slower without breaking their arc – allowing you to take more time to calculate each jump.
- Constant muscle-tension: As explained previously, when the weight is distributed throughout the rope it helps you maintain a consistent arc and better rhythm. This also keeps your muscles constantly working harder in order to maintain the rope’s centrifugal force spinning. Try skipping a weighted rope with a fast and steady pace for half a minute and you’ll know what I’m talking about as you feel the burn in your arms and shoulders increasing.
- Rope material: Another problem with plastic or rubber ropes is that they easily end up tangled – especially when folded and placed in a bag to carry around. If are always on the go with a backpack like me, this can be annoying. Crossrope is made out of coated wire which besides making it more durable, it also doesn’t allow the rope to end up coiled up, no matter how you fold it and where you place it.
- Ball Bearing Connection: Crossrope has the best ball-bearing connection I’ve tried. This helps the weighted rope spin smoothly and minimizes straining in your wrists.
It doesn’t really matter what rope you get started with as long as it’s the proper size for you. What’s most important is that you give skipping rope a try for at least a few weeks and see if you like it. In case you missed them, check out my previous videos on how to use jumping rope as a warm up tool and my Calisthenics jump-rope Super Circuit training routine.