If you are familiar with Jump Rope Dudes, you know that we absolutely love jump rope training.
A cheap, durable, and mobile cardio tool, the jump rope has the power to transform your mind and body as it evolves with you on your fitness journey. Whether you’re looking to burn fat, tone your muscles, or improve your explosive agility, the sky’s the limit with a jump rope in hand.
And the best part? Jumping rope is freaking fun!
Today we are here to take a look at the top 10 benefits of jumping rope and show you why we (Dan and Brandon) have dedicated our lives to helping others achieve their fitness goals with a jump rope in hand. Grab a rope, throw on some tunes, and get ready to discover both the mental and physical benefits of jump rope training.
Here we go!
What Is Jumping Rope?
Before getting into the benefits of jumping rope, we want to provide a quick summary of what “jumping rope” actually is.
We understand that many readers may be new to the concept, and a brief overview of the exercise will go a long way in helping all you new dudes and dudettes as you begin your jump rope journey.
Here is the most basic definition we can think of:
A “jump rope” is an exercise tool used in the sport of “jumping rope” or to achieve specific fitness goals. While holding the rope in both hands, an individual will jump and simultaneously swing the rope under their feet. The goal is to repeatedly time the swing of the rope with the momentum of the jump, all the while maintaining a continuous rhythm.
Jumping rope is an exercise that many professional athletes use to improve their physical and mental conditioning (think boxers). And yet, one of the best things about jumping rope is that it doesn’t necessarily have to be linked to a sport. Many people spend a few minutes each day jumping rope to burn fat, tone their muscles, or just have some fun.
For those of you truly new to the world of jumping rope, we recommend that you check out our blog post, How to Jump Rope: The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide. In this guide, you will find everything you could possibly need to get started jumping rope, including easy-to-follow video tutorials.
Now, on to the benefits of jumping rope!
Physical Benefits of Jumping Rope
1. Amazing for Weight Loss
If you’re looking to burn fat, jumping rope is hands down the best way to do so.
For those of you not entirely familiar with the JRD story, both of us used the jump rope to transform our bodies and drop fat fast. In the case of Dan, he weighed about 260 pounds before he discovered the jump rope. He was working a corporate job and finding it difficult to meet his fitness goals. With the help of the jump rope – together with some lifestyle changes – he was able to lose 70 pounds of fat. Brandon used the rope to a similar effect, dropping from 250 pounds to 185 pounds.
But don’t just take our word for it – science confirms the fat loss power of jumping rope. Research shows that jumping rope can burn up to 1,300 calories per hour. Keeping in mind that everyone is different, our own experience has taught us that we can burn 1,000 calories in roughly the same period of time.
Still not convinced?
We have a whole community of dudes and dudettes who have similar stories. We recommend that you check out our jump rope transformations playlist on YouTube. You’ll meet Barry (who lost over 80 pounds), Aaron (who lost over 27 pounds), Declan (who cut his body weight in half!), Andreaa (who lost over 100 pounds), and countless others who have changed their lives for the better by simply picking up a jump rope.
2. Improves Mind-Body Coordination
Although jumping rope looks simple enough (jump, swing, repeat), the exercise requires a degree of mind-body coordination and focus that we often take for granted.
The act of repeatedly rotating the rope around your body (while jumping at precisely the right moment for the rope to clear your feet) requires your whole body to be in sync for a sustained period of time. It is for this reason that it is such a great exercise for improving your mind-body coordination.
Medical research shows that jumping rope has a positive effect on motor coordination among patients with movement disorders, and our own experience has shown us similar results. As you jump, your body naturally looks to harmonize and align a number of different areas with the movement of the rope – from your eyes to your feet to your legs. Over time, this balancing act becomes easier, especially as you learn more complex movements.
3. Strengthens Heart Health
When it comes to cardiovascular health, the jump rope is king.
In just a few minutes a day, you can lower your resting heart rate and blood pressure, reduce stress hormones, get rid of bad cholesterol, and lower your risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) such as coronary heart disease, strokes, peripheral arterial disease, and aortic disease.
A study that is often cited by jump rope proponents (including us!) is a 2018 investigation from the European Journal of Applied Physiology. This amazing research shows that a 12-week jump rope plan reduced the CVD risk factors for a group of teenage girls with pre-existing conditions such as prehypertension and borderline high blood pressure.
What does this study tell us? Anyone can do it! There’s no need to be a super athlete or gym fanatic. Anyone can pick up a rope and start living a healthier lifestyle today.
4. Increases Bone Density
Bone health and bone density are keys to living a healthy and active life long-term. Healthy bones also reduce the risk of painful and chronic conditions such as osteoporosis. The key to building healthy bones is impact training.
Jumping rope, as a repetitive and medium-impact exercise, stresses your bones (particularly your knees, ankles, and feet) more effectively than most other forms of cardio exercise such as running on the treadmill or using the elliptical. As a plus, it also helps you reduce the risk of suffering from sprains or fractures (see more in the section below).
Multiple health organizations have recommended jumping rope as a strategy for improving bone health, including the International Osteoporosis Foundation.
5. Reduces Risk of Injury
One of the best physical benefits of jumping rope is the reduced risk of knee and ankle injuries that dudes and dudettes experience.
As jumping rope on a consistent basis forces you to coordinate precision movements between the upper and lower portions of your body (see benefit #2), a natural byproduct is improved body awareness. This increase in spatial awareness and coordination will make you less injury-prone when engaging in fitness activities, as well as other less rigorous physical activities that we often take for granted.
Jumping rope also helps you strengthen the muscles, ligaments, and tendons around your feet, ankles, and knees. As you activate and strengthen these areas over time, you will build a rock-solid foundation that will help you avoid common injuries such as ligament tears and sprains. Of course, you can never fully eliminate the risk of injury in any physical activity, but jumping rope goes a long way in helping reduce it.
On the flip side, if you are concerned about the risk of injury when jumping rope, or have some apprehension about getting started because of previous injuries, check out our video tutorial below on how to prevent injuries when jumping rope.
6. Improves Posture
Proper posture is essential for living a healthy life.
Sadly, we now live in a society where everyone (yes, even us) spend most of the day hunched over their computers or smartphones doing stuff like work, school, and social media. This type of slouching posture can be extremely harmful to your body, particularly your back, neck, and shoulders.
Correct jump rope form as we teach it (back straight, shoulder blades pulled back, eyes towards the horizon) will help you align your spinal column as you reap the many benefits of proper posture, including better breathing, reduced tension headaches, increased lung capacity, and optimal digestion.
Remember, learning the fundamentals of jumping rope is key in this respect. Avoid developing bad posture habits as you jump. Not only will you trip over your rope, but you will also increase the risk of injury.
7. Increases Agility and Balance
Jumping rope is also great for your agility and balance.
Not only are you coordinating movements between the upper and lower portions of your body, but every time you land on your feet, your body needs to reestablish balance to get ready for the next jump. At high speeds, this process trains your body to develop that balance more rapidly.
With respect to agility, jumping rope can help you develop the ability to change the direction and position of your body quickly, effectively, and while under complete control. This can lead to:
- Improved straight-line speed
- Quicker footwork
- Better reflexes
It is for this reason that many professional athletes incorporate jumping rope into their training, regardless of the specific sport that they practice (boxing, mixed martial arts, basketball, volleyball, wrestling, etc.). Check out our video tutorial, How To Become More Athletic With A Jump Rope, to learn more.
Mental Benefits of Jumping Rope
8. Jumping Rope Is Meditative
In our opinion, the goal of any physical or fitness activity should be to achieve a “flow state.” Flow state (also known as “being in the zone”) is a mental state in which a person engaging in an activity is fully immersed and present with a feeling of energized focus and enjoyment.
Jumping rope effectively (with the proper combination of balance and coordination) requires intense focus. We have found that this focus demands that we leave behind everything else that is occupying our minds – family, work, what’s for dinner, the pandemic, etc. – and forces us to think exclusively about the task at hand. You’ll have plenty of time to focus on those other things when you finish your workout routine.
Both of us (especially Brandon) intimately understand the importance of mental fitness training and how it can help you reach your full potential in all aspects of life. As such, we have made it a point to incorporate this crucial pillar of performance and fulfillment into many of our workout videos. Interested in giving one a try? Check out our YouTube flow state workout playlist.
9. Great for Overall Well-Being
Although this benefit doesn’t come from a scientific study or survey, the source might be even better – our first-hand experience with our amazing JRD community members.
Over the years, we have communicated with, coached, and had the pleasure of helping thousands of dudes and dudettes change their lives with the help of the jump rope. And while we have seen many amazing physical transformations, what has struck us the most about our community are the general improvements our members make with respect to well-being.
We are all different – personalities, genetic makeup, experience with physical fitness.
And while not everyone is destined to lose 100 pounds jumping rope, we have seen clear benefits that extend far beyond physical fitness. We have seen members improve their ability to deal with stress. We have seen members make new friends and build networks. We have even seen members improve their self-image and confidence in ways they could never have imagined.
Of all the benefits we have described, this one holds a special place in our hearts. And it is for this reason that our motto will always be “jump rope, get lean, live more.”
10. It’s FUN!
Finally, we have arrived at our final benefit. Drum roll please…
Jumping rope is FUN!
No disrespect to the David Googins of the world, but having fun is crucial to developing a disciplined and sustainable workout routine. Working out is something that takes time to show results, whatever goals you may have in mind. And if the activity you choose is not engaging enough, there’s a high probability of quitting before you see positive results.
This is why, all those years ago we put down the weights, quit the gym, and picked up our ropes – to have fun! With a jump rope, you can take your workout on the go, develop a new skill, improve your well-being, and learn an almost endless variety of tricks, techniques, and routines. It’s an amazingly fun activity that provides incredible results.
So, grab a rope, throw on your favorite music, and start having some fun.
How Can I Get Started?
If, after reading this article, you are itching to pick up a rope and jump (and we’re 100% sure that you are!), there are a number of resources we have to offer that can help get you started on your jump rope journey.
First, check out the beginner’s jump rope guide we linked above (see the section titled “What is Jumping Rope?”). Next, be sure to check out the hundreds of videos and playlists on the JRD YouTube channel. Finally, be sure to connect with us on the coaching forum via our brand new community platform, Jump Rope Dudes TV.
If you are already on your journey and are simply looking for some jump rope gear advice, we have two recommendations. If you want to burn fat and build strength, we recommend trying the Crossrope Get Strong set. If you’re looking for the perfect combination of speed and power, we recommend the Crossrope Get Lean set.
Remember, although we use and recommend Crossrope (it really is second to none with respect to quality and performance), your run-of-the-mill sporting goods store rope is totally fine as well.
Well, JRD nation, we hope you found this post helpful.
Even though we listed ten benefits, it’s important to note that this list is not exhaustive. Experience has taught us that we could easily double it! However, for now, these are the most important benefits to know if you are just getting started. So, if you are looking to get fit, burn fat, have fun, and live more, pick up a rope today and start jumping.
We promise it will change your life.