A couple of years ago I picked up a jump rope for the first time in over a decade. I was jumping super high to make sure I got over the rope, jumping off both feet because if I didn’t I surely wouldn’t get into a rhythm and my arms were moving in large cirlces to make sure the rope got around me. The result was me not making it three jumps without stepping on the rope. I did three sets of three minutes and they were excruciating. The next morning I woke up with the shin splints and sore calves that were nothing I had experienced before. Just nine total minutes of jumping and I was out of commission for two days. And to be completely honest it was much less than nine minutes because I kept stepping on the stupid rope!!!
How the heck to kids and boxers do it? Kids are happy go lucky and it is a game. For boxers it just looks look like the simplest thing ever to do. For me it was PAIN! After seeing people jump rope with what I can only assume was better form than me, I can offer a few novice, non-professional, rookie tips on jumping rope relatively pain free:
1. Get the right length! If your rope is too short, make a couple of knots. If it is too long, get a new rope. I like to jump so that my elbows stay in nice and tight to my body so my arms aren’t flailing all over the place. Also, the ceiling in my apartment is pretty low so i like the rope to just barely get over my head. This also lets me get more rotations in, hence keeping me quick on my feet (at least that’s what I tell myself).
2. Don’t jump off both feet all the time! Jumping off both feet with the same force all the time gets you tired real quick and you end up stepping on the rope a lot. By stepping on the rope a lot and having to start over, it cuts into your actually jumping time. I prefer to go with the one two three four method demonstrated in the following video. click here
3. Practice Practice Practice! Get a rope and just start jumping. In your apartment, on the street corner, in a park or wherever you can. A jump rope is very portable and I know from experience that it is allowed on airplanes(no funny story to add, though it feels like there should be one; apologies for any disappointment at lack of anecdotal story). Eventually you can do crossovers, skipping, high knees and backward jumping. I’m still working on the backward jumping myself.
For a demonstration, check out some videos on the Facebook page or Google or YouTube some people to see how they jump rope. Or just pop in any boxing movie and you are sure to find a decent jump roping sequence. The semi-low budget movie The Hammer, starring Adam Carolla, has a very good jump roping sequence. Even if you aren’t a Carolla fan, you’ll be a fan of this jump roping sequence. If you see me around, just ask i’ll let you borrow my copy!
For more tips, please ask your BootCampSF instructor. If you have any questions, feel free to comment at firstname.lastname@example.org, twitter.com/foxbehungry, this page or the Facebook page.
Have a good workout!
Here are links to the videos on Facebook (I’m the one in the yellow shirt in case you were wondering what I looked like):