Now, fitness centers often incorporate jumping rope as part of a short cardio component. Jumping rope is also integrated into various exercise routines, such as Pilates, kickboxing and boxing. Many team sports training programs incorporate it as a warm up and conditioning tool for improving overall athletic performance.
In addition, occupational therapists recognize the value of jumping rope as a fun and inexpensive way to promote heart health, prevent childhood obesity and help develop bone mass in the hip and lumbar region of the spine.
Unlike running, jumping rope is less likely to lead to knee damage. The impact of each jump is absorbed by the balls of both feet rather than the heels, which reduce the ground reaction forces through the patella-femoral joint.
Janet Stout Everly, EdD, OTR, uses jumping rope in her private practice and classes at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. “I saw the value of jumping rope as a therapeutic medium, an occupation-based activity suitable for all children,” says Everly.
Individuals or groups can participate in the exercise. Learning proper jump rope technique is simple, compared to many other athletic activities. The exercise is also appropriate for a wide range of ages and fitness levels. Jumping rope is particularly effective in an aerobic routine combined with other activities, such as walking, biking, or running.
Jumping rope is a great way to add variety to your exercise program. Best of all, it’s an exercise that is fun, entertaining and highly enjoyable. Studies have shown that people stick with activities that are accessible and enjoyable, so why not give jumping rope a try?