Do you know how often you should be jumping rope each week?
If you’re like many of the jumpers we speak to on a daily basis, it’s a question that comes up often. But it’s one of great importance because how often you jump not only has an impact on your results, but it plays a key factor when it comes to injury prevention.
There’s been a lot of debate in terms of how long a jump rope session should be.
Some say it’s OK to jump every single day. Others claim it’s only good to be using the rope once or twice a week. But the real answer depends on your answers to some important questions.
In this post, I share some important questions you should ask yourself to determine how much you should be jumping rope each week to achieve your personal goals.
Let’s dig in…
Here are the questions that I want you to ask yourself when determining how often to jump:
- What is my current fitness level?
- What is my current jump rope skill level?
- Do I have any previous injuries?
- What kind of surface am I jumping on?
- What are my personal fitness goals?
Let’s take a look at each question in detail.
1. What is my current fitness level?
Are you already training regularly every week?
If you’re an avid gym-goer, then you should have no trouble incorporating the jump rope into your current routine. But this doesn’t mean you should start using the rope every day.
Even if you train regularly, you have to gradually incorporate the rope into the mix. You have to let the muscles and connective tissues in your legs adapt to the new stresses that jumping rope brings.
If you’re a beginner, this is even more important. We’ve seen a lot of new jumpers let their excitement get the best of them and they start their journey with daily hour-long sessions. That’s a recipe for an injury.
You want to start off slowly with an overall low weekly jumping volume of jumping then gradually build up as you feel your muscles adapting.
Always listen to what your body is telling you. If it’s telling you to rest, listen to it. It’s better to take a day off here and there than be forced to take a month off due to an injury.
Crossrope recommendation for new exercisers: 1-2 times per week
2. What is my current jump rope skill level?
Are you just getting started with your jump rope training journey?
If so, take a look at our comprehensive beginner post – it will help you learn how to jump rope quickly.
What we find is that beginners often make the same common mistakes – landing aggressively, rotating the rope inefficiently, maintaining poor jumping posture, etc. Mistakes like these hinder your progress, cause you to fatigue quickly, and potentially lead to injuries.
So if you’re just getting started, keep your sessions short and focused. Focus on learning one thing at a time. If you start to get frustrated or aren’t making any progress, take a break and try again tomorrow. There’s no rush to mastery.
The last thing we want to do is jump too often with bad technique. You want to make sure you’ve got your basic technique down before you start to ramp up your weekly jumping volume.
Here’s a bonus tip – always spend about 5 minutes before each session working on basic technique and skill work. It’s a great way to build your foundation and get a good jump rope warm-up.
Once you feel that your technique is proficient enough to ensure safe jumping, you can start increasing your jumping volume as your training needs.
3. Do I have any previous injuries?
Injuries suck. We’ve talked about how to avoid jump rope injuries and shin splints in the past.
If you have any previous injuries, it’s very important that you do two things:
- Talk to a doctor/physician to make sure you’re cleared to participate in jumping of any kind (before you start jumping)
- Pay attention to how your body feels when you’re jumping and adjust accordingly
If you’re cleared to jump, keep your initial jumping volume low and your sessions short.
Also, make sure to take lots of breaks to allow for recovery. As you get a better feel for how your body is reacting to the new stress of jumping, you can begin to build up your sessions accordingly.
4. What kind of surface am I jumping on?
One of the coolest benefits of jumping rope is portability. You can bring your rope with you and use it almost anywhere, on any surface.
Unfortunately, a lot of cheap jump ropes aren’t able to remain in-tact when used on rough surfaces.
This is why at Crossrope we focus so much on designing and building jump ropes that can be used on the roughest of terrains, while maintaining impressive durability. Our Crossrope Starter Set is a prime example of this. Both the 1/4 Lb black Agility rope and 1 Lb orange Intensity rope (pictured below) can be used on any surface:
Regardless, if you want to protect your joints and your rope, we recommend that you jump on softer surfaces more frequently (or use a jump rope mat when soft surfaces are not available).
If you do find yourself consistently jumping on harder surfaces (like concrete or asphalt), then it’s important that you not only keep your weekly volume low, but that your jump rope sessions are kept short as well.
If, on the other hand, you’re jumping on softer surfaces (like rubber flooring or hardwood) or you’re using a jump rope mat, then it’s OK to increase your weekly volume.
Crossrope recommendation for soft surfaces: 3-5 times per week (15-20 minute sessions)
5. What are my personal fitness goals?
Your fitness goals will ultimately determine how often to incorporate your jump rope into your weekly training. There are two primary factors that come into play here:
- Jumping duration
- Jumping intensity
For example, if you’re looking to build your endurance and stamina, you’ll likely want to focus on longer duration jumping at lower intensities.
Longer jump rope sessions (20 – 60 minutes) are great for building aerobic fitness, but it’s important to be wary of the stresses that are imposed on your legs and connective tissues during long periods of jumping. You want to build up to a long duration (not start there).
Also, a good jumping surface (see point #4) is essential for longer duration jumping.
If you’re consistently putting in longer jumping sessions but at lower intensities, you should be able to jump comfortably 3-4 times per week as long as you’re paying attention to how your body is reacting and adjusting accordingly.
Note – if you want to learn how to jump rope for longer periods at a time, watch this video:
On the contrary, if your goal is to get lean and burn fat with a jump rope, you’ll want to keep your duration short but your intensity high.
HIIT workouts are great for getting your heart rate up, burning calories, and turning your body into a fat-burning machine even after a workout (read about EPOC).
But while high intensity sessions are great for fat loss, they can impose a lot of stress on the body’s systems. Do your higher intensity sessions no more than 1-3 times per week.
If you’re mixing up short and long durations of varying intensities – as most of us do – then you’ll need to play around and find a weekly volume that challenges you, but doesn’t put you at risk for injury.
Crossrope recommendation for long sessions: 1-3 times per week (short duration, higher intensity)
That’s it – you now have 5 questions to ask yourself when you’re trying to determine how often you should be jumping rope each week.
Remember that your current fitness level, jump rope skills, past injuries, jumping surface, and general training goals will all play a role in helping you determine what your ideal weekly jumping volume should be.
But you need to start testing.
And once you do, you have to listen to your body. If you’re feeling pain and discomfort too often, cut down your weekly volume and shorten your jump rope sessions. If you find that your sessions are too easy, slowly up the volume, duration, and intensity and see how that works.
You’ll find that as your fitness and skills improve, your volume will naturally increase as well.
Article courtesy – Our friends at Crossrope.com