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12 jump ropes for any kind of home workout

Beginners and elite athletes alike will love these affordable options.
RichLegg / Getty Images

Good news: Jump roping isn't only for kids any longer. This schoolyard staple is super popular among fitness fanatics — and for good reason.

Jumping rope offers a heart-pumping workout that’s beneficial for your body while also offering some nostalgic fun at the same time. Shop TODAY consulted two fitness experts about all the ways your body can benefit from jumping rope and how to do it properly.

What are the benefits of using a jump rope for exercise?

Fitness expert and creator of Fun With Fit Ebonny Fowler uses the ABC acronym to remember the benefits of using jump rope for exercise.

  • A: Fowler calls jumping rope an aerobic exercise that can improve agility and it’s affordable.
  • B: During your workout, you can burn calories, work on your balance and bring back fun childhood memories.
  • C: Cardiovascular exercise is another important benefit she mentioned. It’s a good way to get into conditioning, improve coordination and it’s convenient. “You can do it at home, indoors, outdoors, while you’re traveling,” she said.

“Jump rope is one of the fastest ways to change your body,” explained Carrie Schechter, owner of Brooklyn-based boxing gym Jukebox and UnderWraps Virtual Boxing Club. “It gets your body in shape so fast and it specifically targets [your] core, shoulder, back and legs.” She also mentioned additional physical benefits like lowering your resting heart rate and said the exercise can help if you have high cholesterol or heart issues that run in your family.

Aside from physical benefits, Schechter emphasized the mental perks that come from jump roping, as well. “The rhythm just shifts your brain. There’s a complete shift and stress is reduced. You get into this very light place mentally because [of it],” she told us.

How to jump rope

If your jump rope skills aren’t the strongest or you haven’t done it in a while, Schechter and Fowler offered some tips to make sure you’re doing it properly.

Before you pick up the rope, you’ll want to start off with a proper warmup, Fowler advised. Jumping rope works out many different areas of your body, so you'll want to make sure you get a good stretch in first. She suggests doing mobility exercises like active stretching, wrist rolls and ankle turns in both directions, forearm stretches, quad stretches, hamstring stretches and shin and calf stretches. If you’re up to it, you can even go into Downward Facing Dog while keeping your heels planted on the form. “You really want to warm up all the areas of the body that are going to be working throughout your workout,” she said.

When you’re ready to begin your workout, start slow and take time to craft your form. Improper form can lead to issues like plantar fasciitis, back pain, rolled ankles, calf cramps and even non-physical responses like frustration and mental fatigue, Fowler and Schecter noted.

When you’re at starting position, your hands should be sitting around hip level, elbows tucked tight and pointing back, your shoulders down and relaxed and keep your head and neck neutral to your spine. Your arms shouldn’t be swinging around, either — with this exercise, all of the work is coming from your wrists. Once you start to jump, getting far off the ground won’t be necessary. A few inches in the air will suffice, with Schechter and Fowler recommending two to three inches, so it’s just enough for the rope to pass under your feet.

If you’re curious about your form, Fowler recommends asking a personal trainer to observe for anything that needs work or simply recording yourself and watching the video post-workout to see if you notice anything that should be adjusted.

If you’re just getting started, don’t push yourself too hard. Schechter recommends starting in 30-second increments to make sure you get it right consistently. When you’ve got it down, Fowler recommends going with a light 5 to 10 minute workout to start and increasing time limits from there.

How to shop for a jump rope

Like most clothing, jump ropes aren’t a one-size-fits-all purchase. There are certain things you’ll want to look for before purchasing any specific rope. True to her brand, Fowler has another signature acronym — LAW — that she uses to help choose the right jump rope.

  • L: Length. She says a proper jump rope should be about three feet longer than your height. For example, if you’re five feet tall, your jump rope should be eight feet long. Another way to tell if a jump rope is the proper height for you, according to Schechter and Fowler, is to stand in the middle of the rope and pulling the ends up to your sides. The part where the handlebar meets the rope should land right at your armpit. If it’s a little too long, Schechter suggests making a knot at the space where they meet to adjust the rope for your height if it doesn’t already have adjustable handles. If you still need some help, Fowler recommends looking at a virtual, visual sizing guide like this one.
  • A: Affordability. There are so many jump ropes on the market, so choose one that works best for your budget, but not one so cheap that it’s not durable. “There's no right or wrong price point. It’s what works for you as long as it’s a jump rope that’s going to be sustainable,” Fowler said.
  • W: Weight. Jump ropes come in different weights that can assist with different goals, so choose a weight that works best for you. Lighter weights are good for speed; average weights are the basic jump rope you’ll find which can be used for basic motions; and heavier weights are good for sculpting the body. Schechter suggests using a jump rope with some weight on it (either in the handles or the rope itself or both, if you feel like you can handle it) when you’re first getting started to help you figure out your rhythm.

To help you find the best jump ropes for your home workouts, we’ve compiled a list of 12 top-rated options that’ll help you achieve your fitness goals — all without breaking the bank.

Best jump ropes for beginners

Redify Weighted Cordless Jump Rope

Cordless jump ropes are apartment-friendly and can be easily stowed away until you're ready to use them. It comes with weight-bearing iron blocks that you can add or remove as you need.

XYLsports Jump Rope

If you’re brand new to jumping rope, you’re going to want to start with something that’s easy to use. A good option is this tangle-resistant rope with comfortable foam grips. Since it’s not a weighted rope, it won’t hurt if you accidentally nick yourself mid-workout.

Sivvderi Jump Rope

You never have to worry about tripping during your workout with this cordless jump rope. Available in six different colors, this option also includes a HD LED screen on the handles to help you keep track of jumps. Once you feel comfortable with the jumping motions, you can attached the included ropes to transform your cordless handles into a traditional jump rope.

Best jump ropes for weight loss

TRX Weighted Jump Rope

A weighted jump rope will help you tackle cardio and strength training at the same time. Instead of having additional weights outwardly on display, this rope has nine-ounce weights that are housed inside the handlebars and can be removed when you want a lighter workout. The rope itself is also adjustable up to 10 inches.

RopeFit Heavy Jump Rope

Increase your calorie burn with this heavy-duty rope that’ll make you work harder than if you were using a normal jump rope. It comes in a 1.5- or 2-inch thickness options, which are five pounds and eight pounds respectively. Reviewers of this rope say this weighted option gives your arms and shoulders a major workout during each session, too.

Tangram Smart Jump Rope Rookie

Take your workout to the next level with this jump rope that connects to the brand’s compatible app to track reps and calories burned. You can even challenge other Smart Rope users during your workouts for a little bit of friendly competition.

Everlast Evergrip Weighted Jump Rope

With 1.5-pound weights in each handle, this jump rope is great for both torching calories and sculpting your arms. The removable weights allow users to tone down their workout on days that they’re looking to focus on speed work rather than muscle toning.

Crossrope Get Lean Weighted Jump Rope Set

While this jump rope comes with a hefty price tag, it’s worth it. Using a clip system, you can swap out the light and heavy ropes depending on your fitness level. There’s also a free app available for you to tap into for a plethora of free workouts — all of which are under 30 minutes.

Best jump ropes for speed work

Nike Fundamental Speed Rope

This speed rope is lightweight with an adjustable length, so users can get a customized fit. It's nine feet long and, according to the brand, delivers fast, smooth rotations.

Wod Nation Speed Jump Rope

Designed for speed, this jump rope will allow the experienced exercise enthusiast complete double unders and other difficult movements quickly and efficiently. It’s important to note that this jump rope is made with a coated cable and must only be used on smooth surfaces like a gym floor — concrete or asphalt will destroy the coating.

Aero Speed Hyperformance Jump Rope

This jump rope features swivel-bearing technology so the handles can easily twist in any direction during complex, quick motions. It’s lightweight to ensure it moves quickly and it’s adjustable so those up to 6’5” can use it.

Degol Skipping Rope

The ball-bearing system within the handles of this jump rope ensure speed is no issue for jumpers. Memory foam handles also keep the user comfortable during workouts.

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