Many people have a love-hate relationship with the childhood-activity-turned-sweaty-warm-up, but no matter your fitness level, the playground staple is always a win when it comes to warming up your body and preparing yourself for what lies ahead. "Jumping rope is a total-body workout. It works the upper body, lower body, core, and it elevates your heart rate," personal trainer Christi Marraccini says.
"Jumping rope is a total-body workout. It works the upper body, lower body, core, and it elevates your heart rate." —Christi Marraccini, personal trainer
Jumping rope doesn't just get your heart rate up and warm your muscles, though: It does both of these things quickly. If you're keeping up a fast pace, celeb trainer Mohamed Elzomor says you can "get the same amount of cardio work you'd get from other methods, like an elliptical, in a shorter amount of time." Less cardio for the same results? Yes, please.
To get started with jumping rope, Elzomor says your first step should be making sure the length works for you, so stand on the center of the rope and choose an option where the handles reach your armpits. Then, focus on swinging the rope from your wrists, not your arms and shoulders. You can practice without the rope at first, just to make sure you have the technique down. Once you feel like you're good to go, start with one minute on and one minute off, then increase to two minutes once that feels easy, says personal trainer Latoya Julce.
As you get better and better, experts say you can start using weighted jump ropes, doing fancy moves like double-unders, or seeing how many reps you can get in during a certain amount of time.
This is the 10-minute warm-up ballerinas do for toned abs and better posture. Also, here's how you can create a total-body toning workout anywhere.
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