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Thursday, November 8, 2012

 
The most 
underrated 
exercise for 
speed, cardio and 
coordination..


I have been in this business long enough to see many fads and trends;There are those who 'do it' but don't 'know it'. The 'it' of course being training. But when it comes to coordination in training I am not surprised by the lack of attention it receives in many training programs. Coordination in training is erroneously left out of muscle building and cardio programs. But my fave for improving coordination, speed and cardiovascular fitness: the jump rope!

I have blathered on about the advantage of lo tech v. hi tech training techniques. Obviously  I put the jump rope in the lo tech category. However, rope jumping can have postiive implications on your weight loss and overall training regiment. You can take it anywhere, do it anywhere, and work on a multitude of coordination patterns. Its a great supplement as an interset training tool.  In fact, research bears it out that adding cardio during a weight training program increases weight loss and Vo2 efficency.

I mean you could have an 'epic' hardcore weight training sequence with 2-5 minute jump rope added in there! Yup. I am often shocked at the number of people who don't jump rope especially when they ask me for basic coordination or speed training tips. When I say 'jump rope' the response is typically " I haven't jumped rope since..."And to the ladies, especially, who ask "how can I improve my my legs/hips/butt"? My answer is of course jumping rope. Now, before I get 'yeah but what about squats and stuff ?' I am not saying to exclude those I am suggesting adding the jump rope as an alternate when you want a different 'feel' and look(ladies) for leg symmetry and cardiovascular impact.

Jumping rope does several things:
  • Teaches coordination and timing
  • Can be challenging especially when you learn different patterns to engage entire planes of motion for the leg
  • Engages ALL the proprioceptors(tiny receptors that sense direction change)from the hip to the ankle
  • Great interset technique when doing training combinations e.g. dead lift, chin ups, 2 min heavy bag and 2 minute JUMP ROPE!. Do this 3x each and it changes the tempo and intensity of training!
  • Great for enhancing speed since there needs to be a certain amount of 'stiffness' at toe-off when accelerating. Jumping rope improves this reflex
  • Portable and cheap
  • Also a great 'what to do when I am not at BSI and on vacation?' exercise.  For example, it would look like this: push-up{your choice of technique}, 2 min jump rope, core technique{your choice of technique. I'm just say'n!
 So if you are looking for ANOTHER way to improve your training add the jump rope. Its as simple as that. And don't even get me started on heavy-rope training....

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