The boxer skip is the ESSENTIAL jump rope trick because it forms the basis of your technique, builds endurance, and will help you nail more moves as you progress.
In my opinion, the boxer skip is the fundamental jump rope movement from which you’ll learn rhythm, timing, and muscle memory, allowing you to be able to skip longer with less effort. Nailing this move is important for your jump rope journey and guaranteed to make it easier to add more tricks to your repertoire.
I shared this drill on our YouTube channel a while ago and the comments blew up! Many said that after months/years of trying and failing, they were finally able to land it after breaking it down step-by-step. So if you’ve tried, and failed, to land the boxer skip before — you’ve come to the right place.
Today I’m going to show you my tried-and-true drill for learning the boxer skip. This step-by-step tutorial, with pictures, will have you floating like a butterfly and stinging like a bee in no time!
In this article:
- What’s the jump rope boxer skip?
- How to boxer skip in 5 steps:
- Step 1: Single leg hops, no rope
- Step 2: Leg hops with lazy taps, no rope
- Step 3: Alternating leg hops, no rope
- Step 4: Single leg hops with jump rope
- Step 5: Leg hops with lazy tap and jump rope
- Putting it all together
- Why is the boxer skip so hard?
- Is the boxer skip better?
- What’s the best rope to learn the jump rope boxer skip?
- Learn the boxer skip & more with the JRD App
What’s the Jump Rope Boxer Skip?
What’s the boxer skip, and what’s jump rope have to do with boxing? This skipping style was made famous by boxers, particularly some of the greatest champs ever. I covered this in depth in How to Jump Rope Like a Boxer, so today is about how to nail the boxer skip move they made famous.
The boxer skip is characterized by its shuffle-like movement, shifting your weight from one foot to the other and staying low to the ground. This move is exceptionally good at conserving energy during exercise, allowing you to jump rope longer and more efficiently.
Because boxing is an extremely high endurance sport, it requires a training method that allows athletes to manage their energy output and build the endurance needed to last for many rounds in the ring.
Anyone who is starting to jump rope for the first time will tell you — it’s hard! And frustrating! And most of us can’t jump for more than 20-30 seconds at a time. Just like boxers use the boxer skip to conserve their energy and build endurance to fight longer, this move helps you to do the same. You’ll build the stamina you need to get through your workouts, and life’s toughest battles, with the boxer skip.
How to Boxer Skip in 5 Steps
The boxer skip is all about muscle memory, so make it simple! Start with your footwork and drilling in the technique with your lower body first. So, put your rope to the side because we won’t need it at all until step 4.
I can’t stress this enough: Don’t rush it. It will take you longer to figure out the pieces if you skip steps!
1. Single Leg Hops, No Rope
Start by hopping on your right foot for 3 sets of 10, then switch sides. This will feel super easy, that’s the point.
2. Leg Hops with Lazy Taps, No Rope
Next, you’re going to do these hops and tap with the foot that doesn’t bear your weight. Instead of hovering your foot in the air, try to lazily tap the ground next to your weight-bearing foot with each jump. Same as step 1, repeat 3 sets of 10 hops on each leg.
3. Alternating Leg Hops, No Rope
Now try alternating your legs after each jump, shifting your weight from foot to foot with the lazy taps. It looks like this: hop on the right foot, lazy tap with the left, hop on the left foot, lazy tap with the right, and repeat… You can see it in detail in the photos below. Repeat this move as many times as you feel you need to before moving on because now it’s time to add the rope!
Tip: It helps me to think of it this way — it’s like a little jog in place, but instead of your foot leaving the ground when you push off, it’s tapping the ground next to you.
4. Single Leg Hops with Jump Rope
Grab your rope and repeat step 1 adding the rope in. Don’t worry about the lazy tap yet; all you need to focus on is hopping on one leg and getting the rope under you with each swing.
5. Hops + Lazy Taps + Jump Rope = Boxer Skip
Now we’re going to put it all together, moving through the footwork of steps 2 and 3 again but using the jump rope. Start by incorporating the lazy tap with every single leg hop, still hopping on one leg at least 10x in a row.
Once you feel extremely comfortable doing that, start alternating your weight bearing foot every few skips. It might look like this, hop on right leg 3 times, switch and hop on left leg 3 times. If you mess up, just try again. It might get weird — it usually does 🤪 It takes PRACTICE!
Practice, Double Taps, & Triple Taps
The key to this move is practice and patience. Once you figure out how to alternate your feet and shift your weight, the sky’s the limit. The great thing about the boxer skip is that it allows you to play and have fun with variations, and it will help you land more advanced moves as you progress. Once you feel comfortable with the boxer skip, you can switch up the arms by throwing in a criss cross or side swipe, or get creative with your footwork with a double tap or a shuffle!
Many athletes like to do double and triple tap boxer skip styles, landing on each leg two or three times before switching feet. In fact, Muhammad Ali was a big fan of the triple tap in his training regime. The possibilities are endless with this classic trick.
Why is the Boxer Skip so Hard?
I get asked this one a lot because this move is so much harder than it looks! It’s deceptively hard because it involves shifting your weight from one foot to the other, and essentially, your legs are never supporting their weight under them at the same time. This can be a challenging and uncomfortable thing to grasp if it’s new to you.
Not only is this balancing act tricky, but you must time the swings of your rope perfectly to match your footwork. The rhythm and timing of all the moving pieces can be tricky, and because this movement is minimal and low to the ground, it’s easy to mess up. However, once you’ve landed it, it will open up a whole new world for your jump rope game.
So is the boxer skip frustrating and freaking hard? Yup! But you won’t get anywhere with it unless you practice and put in the work. No excuses!
Need more guidance on nutrition, workouts, and lifestyle to get lean and live healthier? Check out the ONLY 10 Things That Matter For Weight Loss, where I discuss the fundamentals of the Jump Rope Dude lifestyle.
Is the Boxer Skip Better?
This is a tricky question; there are so many reasons that many athletes prefer the boxer skip while training. But is it BETTER? Not really… You can achieve all the same results doing an alternative movement, if you choose. You don’t have to learn to boxer skip, especially if you struggle with mobility issues or coordination, but I do highly recommend that everyone try to learn the boxer skip on their jump rope journey.
Benefits of the boxer skip:
- Builds endurance and stamina.
- Total body conditioning.
- Improves your footwork timing and coordination
- Enhances your body’s overall coordination, speed, and agility
- Better body/spacial awareness
- Ultra low-impact jump rope exercise
- Sustainable, high-calorie burning movement
- Space-saving, do it anywhere!
Many of these benefits you’ll get from most jump rope exercises, and some are specific to the boxer skip. Check out this analysis, where Dr. Huberman Talks About the Benefits of Jumping Rope.
What’s the Best Rope to Learn the Boxer Skip?
Do NOT get a flimsy speed rope to learn how to boxer skip! You won’t feel the rope, it will get wrapped up around you, trip you, and you’ll never be able to establish a smooth cadence to your jumps. In order to coordinate your body movements, you have to develop a steady rhythm, and that requires feedback.
When it comes to what’s the BEST jump rope for you — it depends on your size, athletic ability, etc. However, the general rule is that you want something lightweight enough that you can sustain skipping with it for a long time, but not so flimsy that you can’t feel the feedback.
The 1/4 lb rope by Crossrope is perfect for learning how to boxer skip. It has just enough weight to know where the rope is around you, allowing you to match your footwork and wrist swings in perfect timing.
I recommend The Get Lean Set for beginners learning the boxer skip because you get the best of both worlds: two different weighted ropes for different results. One is great for speed, agility, endurance, and the other is a beast for muscle building!
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Learn the Boxer Skip & More with the JRD App
If you’re serious about your jump rope journey, the JRD app is your one-stop-shop for everything you need to help you along the way.
The JRD App includes hundreds of ad-free workouts you can filter by preference and save for later. No confusion or guessing what workouts to do or how to train for max results. Pick a program based on your fitness goals and press play — I’ll take you through the rest.
Need help with a move? I’ve got tutorials for ya. Want guidance on how to eat? The Nutrition System has everything you need.
We’re also home to the world’s largest jump rope fitness community and these rockstars make it fun and easy to stay accountable and motivated to do the thing!! The best part? You can try the JRD APP FREE FOR TWO WEEKS!
That’s it for today, JRD Nation. Please tag me in videos on social media and let me see you crushing your boxer skips! Until next time —
Do. The. Thing!
Jump Rope Dudes