Welcome to September! It’s the time of year when we experience sunny days and cool nights, the return of Pumpkin Spice, and of course, it’s back-to-school season. Many of you with younger children, nieces, nephews or neighbors returning to school know that a popular blacktop activity is jumping rope. It’s a classic kid’s pastime. Wait…am I wrong or do kids still jump rope at lunch and at recess? I might have just inadvertently dated myself. Back in the day we used to Double Dutch, Criss-Cross, and even try to master the Rocky Balboa jump rope footwork. Jumping rope was not only enjoyable, but also a useful motor skill-building activity. It took concentration and focus and was a great way to satisfy our cardio quota. At some point, jumping rope fell by the wayside and many of us quickly forgot the benefits of this low cost and yet highly effective workout, so I am going to encourage us all to relive our youth and Jump into Fall.
Jumping rope is an excellent way to boost heart health. It can be used as a warm-up or as a key cardio workout. For those of you who haven’t attempted to jump rope in some years, you will quickly discover that your heart rate will elevate…and quickly. You can burn (give or take) up to 15 calories per minute jumping rope, and if you’re anything like me, you may be surprised to discover that this once delightful childhood memory is now a challenging high intensity workout.
Jumping rope works the whole body. Your arms maintain the rope’s movement while the lower body provides the power behind the movement. Not only that, but you can also jump rope anywhere. You can jump rope in your basement, outside or even in your kitchen (ceiling height permitted) and a jump rope can easily fit into a bag or a purse to carry along with you to a hotel, or the park as the inspiration hits. Jumping rope can also be a safe exercise for people of all ages. A study published in Sports Medicine found that up to three training sessions of jumping per week (incorporating three sets of 10 jumps per set with 10 second rests) could enhance strength in adults over the age of 50. (Capetta, 2022)
So, let’s review. Jumping rope is Cheap. It’s Simple. Jumping rope will sharpen our Concentration Skills by the effort it takes to successfully jump OVER the rope at each swing. Coordination, which is necessary for everyday movement, will develop as we practice rhythm and timing. Jumping rope is a means to Getting Fit, burning potentially 200 calories in 15 minutes. Case closed. I haven’t convinced you yet? Okay, well then how about the benefit of Mindful Skipping. With increased concentration comes mindfulness – the understanding that we have of ourselves and of the surrounding world. The repetitive nature of jumping can help to keep your mind occupied, as well as prompting the release of ‘feel-good’ endorphins – giving you a natural workout boost. (Johnstone, 2020)
So go grab a rope, either an old one in the garage or basement or indulge and purchase a weighted jump rope or a smart rope or a speed rope (yes, they all exist.) As a reminder, be sure to check in with your doctor before beginning any new exercise regimen. Create your own schedule or follow along with Tycor as we jump into September with our Let’s Jump Into Fall Jump Rope Challenge.
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Capetta, A. (2022, July 26). What Are the Benefits of Jumping Rope Every Day? Retrieved from www.Nike.com: https://www.nike.com/a/benefits-of-jump-rope
Johnstone, M. (2020, January). Get Skipping! The Benefits of Jumping Rope. Retrieved from www.postiveheatlh.com: https://www.positivehealth.com/article/exercise-and-fitness/get-skipping-the-benefits-of-jumping-rope