Is jump rope good cardio? Well, the jump rope has long been considered nothing but a simple conditioning tool.
But a lot has changed over the past few decades. The jump rope is no longer a tool used only by athletes to boost endurance before a big event. It is no longer just a conditioning tool.
With the introduction of new training methods and durable materials, the jump rope has become an extremely versatile training tool – one that can help anyone - of any fitness level - achieve a wide variety of fitness goals, and answer questions like "Will jumping rope me lose weight?" and "What does jumping rope tone?"
Today's focus is specifically on jump rope fat loss. I want to show you why the jump rope is the best cardio tool for your weight loss journey and give you some tips on getting started quickly.
If you have a few extra pounds to burn, this one is for you. Let's dig in.
HIIT Cardio Training for Fat Loss
HIIT, or High-Intensity Interval Training, has received a lot of attention over the past couple of decades. Plenty of studies have proven its effectiveness for burning fat quickly and efficiently compared to traditional steady-state cardio.
Now before we dig into the advantages of HIIT and how you can use it to get real fat loss results, let’s define what HIIT is.
HIIT = simple training protocol where you alternate between periods of high-intensity activity and periods of low-intensity activity for a set duration of time.
For instance, alternating between 30 seconds of max intensity sprints and 30 seconds of jogging for 5 consecutive rounds is a popular HIIT workout.
We’ll take a look at a few other workout examples later. Right now, I want to quickly highlight a few reasons why I recommend using HIIT for your fat loss training.
1. HIIT burns more fat than steady-state cardio
All of the studies I’ve linked to come to the same conclusion: short, high-intensity training sessions result in greater fat loss than long, low-intensity cardio sessions.
One study in particular conducted by researchers at Laval University (in Quebec, Canada) had some interesting findings.
They split up men and women into two groups: the first group followed a 15-week HIIT program while the second group followed a 20-week steady-state cardio program.
The findings: the steady state group burned 15,000 more calories BUT the subjects in the HIIT group lost, on average, nine times more fat than the steady-state group.
But there’s more to this fat-burning story.Another study conducted by researchers at Florida State University (2007) reported that subjects who performed HIIT cardio burned 10% more calories during the 24 hours following exercise compared to the steady-state group, despite the fact that the total calories burned during each workout were the same.That means that you’re burning calories even hours after you’re done exercising. You can burn more fat with HIIT workouts than you can with traditional steady-state cardio (like jogging).
2. HIIT is more efficient than cardio
Actually, I would rephrase the last sentence I wrote to this: You can burn more fat in less time with HIIT workouts than you can with traditional steady-state cardio.
Just take a look at that Laval Study again (up top). The subjects in the HIIT group burned more fat even though they trained for 5 fewer weeks!
So here’s what’s up: HIIT saves you time and gets you better results.
As you’ll see in our sample workouts later, a solid fat loss HIIT session can be done in under 10 minutes (even in as little as four minutes). So the excuse of “I don’t have time to exercise” no longer applies here.
3. You can HIIT train anywhere
If you’re worried that you need a lot of equipment to take advantage of HIIT, you’d be wrong. HIIT can be done anywhere with minimal equipment.You don’t need access to a gym or expensive equipment.You can do your HIIT workouts at home, outside, at the airport, or wherever else you find yourself when it’s time to train. And that flexibility is an important factor over the long term.
Why the Jump Rope is the Perfect Tool for HIIT Training
There are a number of training tools you can use to build a HIIT cardio workout. You can use bodyweight exercises, kettlebells, barbells, sandbags, tires, monkey bars, and the list goes on. But the one training tool I’ve found to be the best? The jump rope. Let's go over a few reasons why.
1. You can switch up intensities on the fly
For a HIIT/cardio workout to be effective, you must be able to transition between different intensity levels quickly. You must be able to go from a high intensity to a low intensity (and vice-versa) within a split-second.The jump rope allows you to do exactly this.You can switch between a light basic jump and a max-effort sprint almost instantly. You can transition quickly between a high-intensity double under and a low-intensity scissor jump.The options are endless. Which brings me to the next point.
2. You can keep your workouts fresh AND effective
Very few training tools are as versatile as the jump rope.
While an outdoor sprinting HIIT workout, for example, can do wonders for fat loss, you can only do it so many times before you get bored with it. With the jump rope, you can constantly switch up your variations. You can transition between countless different jump rope exercises to make your workouts more engaging.
Need some ideas for jump rope exercises? Here are 75 of them –
Press play to watch video.
Now let’s answer your next question –
Which Jump Rope Should You Use?
The great thing about jumping rope is that it’s very easy to get started – you can pick up a simple jump rope at any fitness or department store.
But what if you wanted to get a little more out of each and every workout?
The question we’ve been trying to answer at Crossrope is how do we make high-intensity jump rope training even more effective?
Here’s what we’ve done…
We’ve introduced a unique jump rope training system that adds another layer of effectiveness to your fat loss training: resistance.
There are a number of advantages to adding resistance – and this applies to all fitness levels.
Heavier ropes force you to slow down your rotation and give you great rotational feedback so you know where the rope is on each and every jump – this is super helpful if you’re a novice just picking up jump rope training for the first time.
But as you get better – as your skills improve and your confidence grows – our jump rope system becomes an incredible fat-burning, strength-building, and endurance-improving tool.
As you increase the weight of your rope and the speed at which you rotate the rope around your body, you force greater muscular recruitment and engagement, you get faster heart rate elevation, and you experience a greater secretion of fat-burning hormones (like HGH).
Jump Rope Cardio Training: How to get Started (Quickly)
We’ve shared a lot of information so far. Now let’s get your hands dirty with some powerful jump rope fat loss workouts.
Note – if you’re a beginner, make sure to check out our Complete Beginner’s Guide to Jump Rope Training so you can get up to speed with the skills and techniques that you’ll need to get the most out of these workouts.
When we’re building our own jump rope workouts, we like to start by choosing a workout protocol or blueprint that lays the foundation – these include intervals, AMRAP, ladders, EMOM, Tabatas, etc.
We then take other factors into consideration like the pace of rotation, the weight of rope, footwork patterns, etc. A simple tweak here and there can drastically change the speed and intensity of your workout.
So let me share two workout ideas that you can get started with today.
Jump Rope Fat Loss Workout for Beginners
Looking for a good cardio routine? Here’s a very simple 10-minute jump rope weight loss workout that you can follow along to.
You will need your jump rope and a timer (or stopwatch) for this workout. I’ll be using the 1/2 LB Jump Rope from my Get Strong Set, but you can use the rope you have on hand.
Set your timer to beep loudly every 30 seconds and complete 5 rounds of the following series of jump rope exercises:
– 30 seconds of basic jumps– 30 seconds of jumping jacks– 30 seconds of alternate foot jumps– 30 seconds of rest
You will notice in the video below that I start off very slowly and progressively increase my pace from round to round. Try to do the same thing with your rounds.
Check out my version of the workout here:
Press play to watch video.
When you’re done, make sure to go to our Crossrope Jump Rope Community and share your experience with everyone. We’d love to have you there.
Advanced Jump Rope Fat Loss Workout
Alright, so you’re ready to try a more challenging jump rope fat loss workout to boost your cardio and endurance?
Here’s a 15 minute Jump Rope Tabata Workout that will really get your heart rate up. You will be using the traditional Tabata workout structure here.
Set your timer to Tabata mode (20 seconds on, 10 seconds off) and alternate between these two jump rope exercises:
– 20 seconds sprints– 10 seconds rest– 20 seconds double unders– 10 seconds rest – continue
You’re going to complete the same Tabata round three (3) times, resting one minute between each round. If you need help with your double under technique, make sure to check out our double under guide.
Here’s what this workout looks like:
Press play to watch the video.
Build Your Own Jump Rope Fat Loss Workout
This is where things get really fun and interesting.Once you try out a few of the jump rope workouts we’ve put together, you’ll want to start building your own. And this is where your creativity comes into play.This is where you get to play around with different jump rope exercises, combinations, and training styles – it’s where you get to have a bit of fun. Because training should always be fun.For example, one of our favorite ways of increasing the intensity of our fat loss workouts is mixing jump rope exercises with high-intensity bodyweight exercises. And the combinations are endless.Watch this short video to see how we do it:
Press play to watch the video.
This is what you want to work your way up to because this is what differentiates the jump rope from countless other training tools. By learning how to build your own workouts, you open up a world of training opportunities.I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about our jump rope fat loss tips.I encourage you to try the HIIT workouts I’ve outlined, start building your own, and share this post with others so they can join you in on the fun.