5 Ways to Get Fit Using a Jump Rope

by | Updated: August 1st, 2017 | Read time: 4 minutes

Your favorite childhood pastime, jumping rope, is about to become your favorite exercise. A jump rope is the perfect workout tool because it’s small, making it easy to pack, and extremely versatile. Not to mention skipping for 30 minutes straight scorches 372 calories for a 155-pound person, according to Harvard Health Publications.

Whether you’re jumping with it, hopping over it or skipping around it, a jump rope makes for an efficient workout. Here are five fun ways to get fit with this oldie but goodie:

Woman Jump Roping in Park for Calorie-Torching Workout | Vitacost.com/Blog

1. How to do a jump rope workout

You’ll be shocked at how challenging it is to jump rope for more than one minute, much less do an entire workout using it. But you totally got this! So give the following workout a shot.

Repeat 3 to 10 times, working your way up as you build cardiovascular and upper body strength.



Single jump

30 seconds


15 seconds

Double jump

30 seconds


15 seconds

Slalom jump*

1 minute


30 seconds

Jumping jack jump**

2 minute


30 seconds

*Slalom jump: Jump over the rope toward the right, then back over to the left, repeating for the entire minute. Think of the skiing movement, where you move side to side.

 **Jumping jack jump: Move your feet like you would during a jumping jack—out wide then back into the middle—each time the rope goes around.

 2. Use it for HIIT

Jump rope is a great way to up the intensity of a HIIT workout. Because it’s an intense cardio and upper body workout, fit it in between a lower-body exercise and a core exercise. This way, you don’t burn yourself out with just one exercise.

3. Lay it on the ground

You don’t have to jump with your jump rope. You can use it the same way you would any other rope or latter. Lay the rope on the ground and make your way from top to bottom with these fun ideas:

  • Hop from your left foot to your right foot, making your way from one end of the rope to the other. Stay light on your feet and move fast—make your way up and down the rope at least three times in a round.
  • Compete with your workout partner to see who can leap further down the jump rope. Mark one side of the rope with a barbell to show where the last person landed and see if you can beat it. Leaping is a great lower body and cardiovascular exercise—plus, a little friendly competition is always motivating.
  • Plank walk the length of the rope, starting at the left. In plank position, step your right hand out, then your right foot, repeat on the left side, keeping your core tight as you make your way to the right side of the rope. Head back to the left side to complete one round.

4. Work your abs

Use the jump rope to re-invent your favorite ab exercises and create new ones. Here are a few ideas:

  • Hold both jump rope handles together, with both hands gripping both handles in front of your chest. Brace your core and swing the rope side to side, in a figure eight movement.
  • Sit in boat position, on your tailbone, with legs, feet and back off the ground; hips hinged. Fold the jump rope in half and hold each end with your hands so the rope is tight and perpendicular to your body. Hold this position and reach your hands up above your head. Lower back down so the rope is at chest level and repeat.
  • Holding rope in the same position as above, rotate it to your right and then your left, like you would a Russian twist.

5. Go for a combo move

Combination moves, or movements that combine two exercises into one, are a great way to get your heart rate up and tackle multiple muscle groups. Use these ideas to take regular exercises to the next level.

  • 10 jump rope rotations + 3 burpees
  • 5 jump rope rotations + 20 high knees (10 each leg)
  • 10 jump rope rotations + 10 jump rope figure 8s
  • 20 jump rope rotations + 10 squats

Jumping rope is a great way to add diversity to your workout, while challenging your cardiovascular endurance. If you’re looking to sculpt your arms, jump rope can help with that too—they’ll be burning after just 30 seconds. Find a jump rope next time you’re feeling bored in the gym and give these ideas a try. You may just fall in love with the jump rope (and your workout!) all over again.