Outside of CrossFit gyms and PE class, it's been rare to see anyone picking up a jump rope for a workout in the last few years, which is a real shame. Not only is jumping rope a great way to get your heart rate up and work up a sweat, it's also one of the most inexpensive and portable fitness tools ever. It's high time for jumping rope to make a serious comeback, both in the gym and in your personal fitness toolbox!

This jump rope workout will only take you 12 minutes, which means you can do it no matter how busy you are. Throw a rope in your gym bag or suitcase so you can take your workout to the park, the crowded gym, or even on vacation.

The key to this workout is to really go all out during each 30-second interval. You should be working close to max capacity during each work period to get all you can out of the workout.

You'll need an interval timer and a jump rope for this workout. Set your timer for 18 intervals of 30 seconds, with 10-second rests between each one. You guessed it: You'll rest on the 10-second intervals and work as hard as you can on the 30-second ones.

Go through the following exercises as a circuit, performing three rounds total.

  1. Double under (or single under)
  2. Push-up with a double knee tap
  3. High knees with a jump rope
  4. Jump lunge squat combo
  5. Front side jump rope combo
  6. Mountain climber

Technique Keys

Double Under

When doing double unders, keep your arms close to your side and avoid splaying your elbows out. Aim for just a slight bend in your knees on the jump—no need to do a full tuck jump—so you can keep your double-under rhythm for the full interval.

If you can't do double unders (yet), just do regular single-under jumps, and keep practicing!

Push-Up With a Double Knee Tap

Do a full push-up, then at the top of the push-up position, bring one knee toward your elbow on the same side followed by your other knee on the opposite side. That's one rep. Repeat for the full interval.

High Knees With a Jump Rope

This exercise is just like a regular high knee jog, except you'll be jumping rope simultaneously. Focus on driving your knees as high as possible and going as fast as you can during this exercise. It should feel like a sprint!

Jump Lunge Squat Combo

This is a great lower body plyometric exercise that ties two exercises together in one killer combo move. Start with one jump lunge on each side, then follow with a low squat jump. This counts as a single rep. Do as many reps as you can before time runs out.

Front Side Jump Rope Combo

This jump rope variation tests your coordination while getting your heart rate up. Swing the rope under once as you jump one foot in front of you while the other goes behind you. On the next swing, switch the position of your feet so the opposite foot is in front.

Next, land with both feet together in a regular jump rope stance, then finally jump both feet wide in a slight straddle position before starting the sequence over again: Right foot forward, left foot forward, feet together, feet apart.

Mountain Climber

No jump rope on this exercise, just a good old-fashioned core burner. Make sure you keep your shoulders directly over your hands and core tight as you do these. Pull your knees up high on each rep, and aim for speed!

About the Author

Krista Stryker

Krista Stryker is an NSCA-certified personal trainer and founder of 12-Minute Athlete, a high-intensity interval training workout regimen consisting of short, effective workouts based...

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