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Skipping rope is an oft-neglected form of cardiovascular training; a surprising fact considering the affordability and portability of a decent speed rope. Skipping can be used for improving aerobic capacity and, for more trained individuals, as part of a general warm-up or even a plyometric activity at the right intensity. For beginners, start with five 1-2 minute intervals of the classic two-foot “bunny hop”, with equal or greater recovery time between sets. To progress, increase interval duration, number of intervals, rope speed, or introduce new movements (try “double-unders” or “cross-overs”). Be sure to skip on a surface that provides adequate shock absorption (not concrete), rest as needed between skipping bouts and sets, and don’t be afraid to make mistakes!

Stephen Paget is a Personal Trainer at Body & Soul

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