While fitness professionals start to re-learn the "fun" side of exercise through the next decade, this is something that my group of training professionals embody, as we take what some consider drudgery and have turned it into a destination hobby. Although the notion of "fun" has long since been taken out of much of the industry whereby many are handcuffed to a treadmill, the newest craze is a step back in time and rope skip.
With many already embracing the fun of skipping rope and a good old fashioned school yard game of "double-dutch", it is a signal of a major move in the exercise industry. Not only does this trend reflect the public's interest in exercise that can be fun and relieve stress, but it incorporates a stripped-down approach that every fitness professional can make use of.
For those within Renegade Training™, including our TEAM of professional instructors, skipping rope is one of the first training methods to be used both in individual training and classes. Skipping rope is a consistent, dependable and inexpensive exercise medium. It is a perfect training medium whether you are an elite athlete or everyday person, simply trying to lose some unwanted pounds. Its many benefits include:
- Foot and hand speed
- Cardiovascular efficiency
- Improved motor skills/muscular harmony
- Reduced body fat
- Strengthened soft tissues
- Increased work capacity
Naturally as you begin to skip there is a learning curve but you will find it a relatively steep one and it won't be too long until you are confident. As you begin, make sure you take your time, where good shoes with proper arch support and make sure you stretch completely after. For those just starting I would suggest a very patient approach and urge you not to overdue it to start.
Borrowing upon my book on Snowboarding, "Sessions"; as basic technique improves I will begin to use the following movement patterns:
Basic two feet together: jump with both feet together and only high enough to clear the rope passing underneath; speed is at the maximum pace.
Crossover of Hands: as the rope starts to pass overhead, quickly cross one hand over the other in a whip like fashion.
Ali Shuffle: shuffle the feet back and forth
Double Skips: jump high while turning the rope as fast as possible so that two revolutions of rope are completed for each single time the feet contact the ground.
Side to side slalom: with the feet together, jump quickly from side to side over an imaginary line. The distance of the jump should be small (approximately six inches) with minimal clearance as the rope passes underneath.
Hip turns (feet parallel): Skipping with the feet together, quickly turn the hips back and forth, 90 degrees each turn.
Hip turns (left foot forward): With the left foot in front, akin to a boxer's stance, quickly turn the hips from back to straight ahead to back to the starting stance.
Hip turns (right foot forward): With the right foot in front, akin to a boxer's stance, quickly turn the hips from back to straight ahead to back to the starting stance.
High Knees: Run in place with the knees high. As technique improves with each of the above movements, athletes should utilize a three minute "round" with the following pattern for a more aggressive approach.
Once these movements are learned we can move into the following three-minute "rounds":
Renegade Rope Skip Pattern™ '"time per (in seconds)
0 to 15 basic 2 feet together
15 to 30 Crossover
30 to 45 Ali shuffle
45 to 60 double skips
60 to 75 side to side slalom
75 to 90 crossover
90 to 105 hip turn
105 to 120 Crossover
120 to 135 hip turn, to left only
135 to 150 crossover
150 to 165 hip turn, to right only
165 to 180 high knees
Rope work is performed daily after the dynamic range of motion work with three to five, 3 minute rounds, each with one minute rest intervals. From this, the next step for the fitness professional is building into full scale, high energy fitness class.
Enjoy skipping rope as all of a sudden it's fashionable!