Stuck for an exercise challenge? Jump rope
In February I participated in a jump rope challenge from an account that I follow on Instagram.
I had a blast skipping in front of murals highlighting Bermudian artists. If you're looking for a fun way to introduce some creativity to your workouts, consider adding a jump rope.
It is an extremely effective form of cardiorespiratory exercise; if you’ve ever swung a rope for more than 20 seconds you know that it's a great way to elevate your heart rate and burn calories.
Check out a few reasons why you should consider jumping rope if you are looking for ways to change or boost your existing fitness programme. As always, make sure and clear it with your doctor before you start!
1. Jumping rope regularly strengthens the calf muscles and improves the elasticity of the surrounding tendons. To increase elasticity, try to land on the ball of your feet first, but let your heels go all of the way down to the ground.
2. Jumping rope improves coordination. Jumping rope occurs in cycles that you perform steadily at a specific cadence. The steady rhythm of jumping rope can help improve your coordination between your eyes, feet and hands.
3. Jumping rope helps improve cognitive function. I definitely felt my cognitive function improve because trying to time my feet with certain rhythms was challenging! I’m not all that fancy yet but I know that with time I will improve. Jumping rope involves learning new patterns, which improves communication between your brain, wrists and legs.
4. Jumping rope is fabulous for increasing your intensity during your workout. Strength-training workouts that challenge a variety of muscle groups can increase your heart rate and provide a cardiovascular benefit. Adding a few jump rope stations to a circuit is an easy way to increase the intensity of the overall workout. If you would like to add an extra challenge to your workout, try skipping rope for one to three minutes at the end for an additional calorie burn.
5. Jump ropes are obviously extremely portable, so perfect for travel. With some of us not quite ready to go to gyms off-island, pack a jump rope and work in some action. Don’t let the lack of a gym keep you from sticking with your workouts.
Let’s start skipping and B-Active For Life!
Betty Doyling is a certified fitness trainer and figure competitor with more than a decade of experience. Look for B. ActiveForLife on Facebook