Body fitness is essential for good health. One of the most straightforward fitness exercises is jumping rope, whose toning effect is felt by the whole body.
The mention of jumping rope evokes childhood memories when it is brought up. However, for adults, it is a different story, yet it is proven to be very beneficial for cardiovascular fitness. In this article, we explore some of the significant benefits of jumping rope, and the best approach and practices for best results.
Major Benefits of Jumping Rope
1. Cardiovascular fitness
The heart and lungs are major organs that make up the cardiovascular system, which is at the heart of the functioning of other body systems. Lungs draw in oxygen, which is then pumped in the blood to the rest of the body by the heart. It is the supply of oxygen to muscles that power muscular activities.
Engaging in strenuous workouts like jumping rope requires more oxygen than usual. This causes the cardiovascular system to work harder than usual. This challenges it to adapt and grow in strength.
The increased heart rate during the jump rope workout is evidence of the effectiveness of the exercise. After a few minutes of vigorous exercise, breathing becomes difficult, and a thin sweat breaks out, signs that indeed the cardiovascular system is experiencing an effective workout.
2. Muscular Endurance
Jumping rope is a repetitive activity, involving two significant actions: jumping and turning the rope. These two actions help in building muscular endurance, which enables muscles to withstand resistance and exert force against it for a long time.
Muscular endurance is critical in the completion of daily tasks and chores, like raking and climbing stairs. It is also very essential for good performance in sports and prevents unnecessary injuries.
3. Bone Strength
Any activity that exerts pressure on bones makes them stronger. Every load placed on them causes them to adapt, making them denser and stronger. This decreases risks of fractures and aging complications like osteoporosis.
In October 2015, the Bone journal published results of a study carried out to show the effect of jump training on osteopenia, a condition of weakened bones or reduced bone density, but not to the extreme of osteoporosis. The study results revealed that there was a remarkable increase in bone mineral density in men with osteopenia who participated in weekly jump training exercises as compared to those who didn't.
In yet another study by the University of Missouri, Columbia, researchers proved that a few weekly weight-bearing activities, like rope jumping, indeed reduce osteopenia.
4. Burning Calories
People who regularly engage in cardio are out to burn as many calories as possible, the objective being to maintain a lean, healthy body. Regardless of the workout, it's the number of calories burned that determines the amount of fat loss.
Jumping rope does not disappoint when it comes to burning calories. A publication by Harvard Medical School shows that a person weighing 125 pounds can burn 300 calories in 30 minutes of jumping rope. A 155-pound person in weight can burn up to 372 calories, while a 185-pound person in weight can burn up to 444 calories.
Rope jumping is very versatile. It can be done anywhere, any time, by anybody, as long as they can jump. All that is needed is a rope, which is very cheap. It bears results, whether it is done slowly by beginners or fast by experienced athletes who are out for a tougher workout challenge. Those seeking an extreme difficulty can go for double or even triple workouts.
Jumping rope can also be incorporated in high-intensity compound workouts, where it is alternated with other free weight and body weight exercises. Not only is it suitable for burning fat, but it also results in cardiovascular wellness. The other workouts achieve faster results than even regular cardio.
To do effective jump rope intervals, do a minute of vigorous jumping, followed by a minute of slow jumping for about twenty minutes.
How Much of Rope Jumping is Necessary Per Day?
The extent or extremity of rope jumping exercises depends on one's goals and objectives, coupled with one's fitness level. Ten minutes of rope jumping is enough for an average person trying to get fit. This is also the starting point for beginners. However, athletes who are out to improve their cardiovascular wellness and body endurance may have to do at least 30 minutes of rope jumping. This is also for people with moderate fitness. For people with advanced fitness, there is no limit, since their bodies are used to high impact.
The health of the cardiovascular system depends on how much of the cardio workouts the body receives. Being an aerobic activity, jumping rope improves the fitness of the cardiovascular system, besides enhancing the body's endurance, for cardiovascular fitness one can choose either high intensity jumping involving short bursts, or long, steady jumping. Short bursts require more oxygen and result in higher oxygen intake during inhalation. This is also called VO2 max. Long, constant jumps enhance the delivery of oxygen in muscles.
As good and useful as a jump rope can be, it is not for everyone. People with joint issues may have to avoid it so as not to worsen the pain or inflammation. It may also not be the best to start with for people with a lot of weight to lose.
To reduce the impact of jumping rope, choose a soft surface, or wear light rubber shoes. Learn to land softly, with the balls of your feet being the first to touch the ground. Soft landing necessitates slight bending of knees, which also creates momentum for the next jump, a strategy that reduces the impact on the ankles and knees.
Jump rope cardio is not hard to achieve with a jump rope. One's level of fitness, as well as one's goal's and objectives, are very crucial in determining how much of jump rope you can do per day. Like every other work out, consistency, determination, and commitment are essential for the best results.