Friday, October 30, 2009

Jump Your Way Fit in Less than 15 Minutes

Jumping rope is an incredible cardiovascular exercise. It's one of the foundations of a boxer's conditioning program, and you have to be in phenomenal shape to box. The tennis champ Jimmy Connors used to skip rope as part of his conditioning routine.

My advice is to wear supportive cross-trainers, tennis or basketball shoes while skipping rope. This is a great workout that doesn’t require a gym membership, a lot of space, or great weather. It can be done when you are crunched for time, don’t feel like spending a long time exercising or while traveling when you still want to keep up your fitness regimen or get into better shape.

Jumping rope is such a strenuous activity it will be hard to maintain for a long period of time. In fact you can get an INTENSE WORKOUT in much LESS TIME due to the level of exertion needed. Below is an example of a high calorie blasting and fat burning workout you can do anywhere.

· Skip rope for three minutes. (A round in boxing is three minutes long.)
· Take a minute off, and do as many crunches as you can.
· Skip rope for one minute.
· During the next minute between rounds, do as many push-ups as you can.
· Back to skipping for one minute.
· Do wall squats for another minute (back against the wall and squat down until your bent with your legs at a 90 degree angle, hold each squat for 5 full seconds)
· Skip 2 minutes (20 seconds normal skip, 5 seconds on one leg, 5 seconds on other leg, repeat 3 more times until you reach 2 min)
· Hold a plank for one minute (push-up position with elbows bent and forearms on the ground – if you want to make it more challenging try holding one leg up, then the other)
· Skipping jumping jacks for one minute. With one turn of the rope, land with your feet together; then on the next turn, land with your feet far apart--as if you're doing jumping jacks.
· High-knee march (30 seconds): Put your rope to the side for this cool-down interval. As you march in place, bring your knees up until your thighs are parallel to the ground. Keep your elbows bent, and swing your arms with each step.
· Entire workout is less than 15 minutes, but it’s an intense 15 minutes. You can get more out of this workout than a steady paced easy 30-40 minutes on the treadmill.
· If you want to build up, or have extra time, you can repeat this series, either right after or at a different time of day.

You might not be able to do more than a few intervals of some of the suggested ‘in-between-skipping’ exercises. Use any exercise you want during the minute between rounds. Try doing squats and lunges (with or without weights) to give your larger leg muscles added work. Do upper-body exercises with dumbbells during that minute. (Use proper form. Don't rush.) One more thing: skipping rope emphasizes your calves, so be diligent about stretching them.
Another advantage to skipping rope is that you can take one anywhere. And they only cost between $6 and $20; you can order them from,, or


  1. Love jumping rope. I've been doing it consistently for about 3 months now. More recently, I jump rope in between sets of lifting. So rather than resting for 30-60 seconds, I jump for 1-2 minutes. Usually end up doing 20 or so sets of jumping! Very intense. And then I finish with 30-45 minutes of cardio :-)


  2. This is only a 12 minute, 30 second workout...Can you revise this so it's a full 15 minutes?

  3. Hi Erika,

    Yes, the idea here is an intense workout in less than 15 minutes. However, if you want to do a full 15 minutes I suggest, doing high knees for a full minute vs the 30 seconds I posted.
    Then add 1 min of push-ups + 1 minute sit-ups + 1 min jump rope to finish - this should equal a full 15 minutes.

    Let me know if that helps and how it goes!