Knowing when to skip it

Why should we start skipping again?

In the day and age of new fitness fads and exercise techniques, we can often lose focus on what simple and effective tools are within our reach to stay fit at very little cost and just a little bit of effort.

If we take ourselves back to our youth we all at some stage would have attempted (some with more success than others…) to skip with our wooden handled ‘antique’ looking skipping rope. Without even knowing it we were engaging in exercise that not only improves our coordination and rhythm but also has many cardiovascular and strength building benefits.

Let’s fast forward to present day now and although skipping rope technology may have improved the way in which we use the rope hasn’t so there is no excuse to not relive those playground days….minus maybe the pigtails and kiss chase!

Before you get started there are a few things to consider so we know that we are doing the exercise safely.

  • Ensure your wearing appropriate footwear, supportive trainers.
  • If doing the exercise indoors you’ll need about 10 inches of space above your head.
  • The exercise surface is important, try and use a wood floor, or an impact mat made for exercise.

There are so many benefits of daily skipping and we can see certain changes from just as little as 15/20 minutes of skipping daily.

  1. One hour of high intensity rope skipping could burn up to 1,300 calories.
  2. According to the British Rope Skipping Association, 10 minutes of skipping can have the same health benefits as a 45-minute run.
  3. Skipping is a chance to train the whole body by using your abdominals to stabilise the body, legs for jumping, shoulders and arms for turning the rope.
  4. Skipping can be less strenuous and harmful for your joints than running. Skipping is a weight bearing exercise so can help in improving bone density, hopefully preventing osteoporosis.
  5. Once you’ve bought your rope, skipping is a zero-cost workout, and can be performed even at home if your ceilings are high enough!
  6. Skipping helps to improve heart rate and blood pressure.
  7. The workout can be adjusted for all fitness levels so you can do it at a pace that suits you. However don’t think that skipping is just for beginners. Many elite athletes will still use the skipping rope as part of their training regimes.
  8. It also aids your coordination and balance. By starting with basic skipping we can challenge ourselves by working towards faster more intense skipping techniques. This is often seen and used by boxers as part of their training techniques to assist in improving speed and footwork.
  9. A regular skipping session improves muscle tone in both the lower and upper body. You will build strong shaped muscles especially in the lower extremities to move the body off from the floor repeatedly.