I know how important regular exercise is for our bodies and our minds. So I do it. And, I enjoy it . . . sometimes. And, I also dread it . . . sometimes. Am I the only one? A love/hate relationship perhaps? But, if I change up my routine, I don't get so bored. And, if I keep the exercise session to about 30-40 minutes, I know I can fit that in my day rather easily.
So, here is something I have been incorporating into my exercise workouts that is so, well, . . . efficient. It gets that heart-rate up and keeps it there so it offers great cardio training. It challenges the legs and backside, and it takes some focus, which is good for the mind. And, besides, this form of exercise was one of my favorites as a child - jumping rope. But, I did not even consider it exercise then - just a lot of fun!
Don't Skip These BenefitsHere are some other benefits to skipping along:
- It is inexpensive and effective at the same time. You can't get much cheaper than $10 for exercise equipment that will burn many calories in a short amount of time. In fact, it beats running a 10 minute mile in that category.
- No gym is needed. Your hotel room, garage, patio or driveway do just fine.
- Jump ropes are lightweight and compact. They make great travel companions. A jump rope can fit in the smallest of compartments.
- Jumping is great for those bones; it helps increase bone density.
- Jumping rope is easier on your knees than running. The impact of each jump is absorbed by both legs not one at a time as in running.
- It tones your legs and backside as it requires a lot of leg strength, Vary it up by jumping up and down, side to side, forward and backward to target various muscles. That is also helpful for decreasing boredom, too!
- Jumping helps to develop the left and right hemispheres of the brain. Gotta keep our grey matter in shape, too!
- Some studies show this form of exercise improves spacial awareness and increases memory and mental alertness.
- The repetitive jumping on the balls of the feet requires the body and mind to make neural muscular adjustments. As a result, jumping improves balance, coordination and reflexes.
The Right FormAs with any exercise, the right form is crucial. You want to avoid injury or straining yourself too much. Start slowly and gradually build up your endurance for this.
Click over here for five great pointers that helped me get started in pursuing this form of exercise. And for an endless amount of information on the topic, check out the Jump Rope Institute.
The Right RopeIf you are in the market for a jump rope, here are some highly-rated ones to consider to get you started:
1. Lifeline Beaded Jump Rope: $15.95; includes instruction book and is adjustable
2. Ultraspeed Cable Rope: $9.45; great color selection and is fully adjustable
3. Prosource Speed Cable Jump Rope: $3.99; great color combinations and is adjustable
All of these ropes can be found on Amazon.com.
So, grab a rope and jump in. And, please let me know if you do!
Note: I have received no payments for listing these products.
photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/cleopold73/2628822853/">Corey Leopold</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">cc</a>