As more people find new home workouts that satisfy their exercise needs, a simple tool that may remind you of recess in grade school can help you strengthen and sculpt. Plus, jump roping can be really fun.

An agility tool used by many sports trainers, a jump rope can provide a healthy dose of cardio as well as lengthening benefits. Women’s Health notes that many boxers use it to increase their speed as well as their muscle definition. William Roberts, director of the Sports Medicine Program at the University of Minnesota Medical School, explains to the outlet, “They’ve used it for a long time for strength, balance, and cardiovascular exercise. And when you think about what boxers do, they’re on their toes and moving around, kind of like jumping rope, so it works a lot of the same muscles.”

But, jump roping also boasts more subtle benefits that can benefit your health. For instance, the impact of jumping up and down forces your skeletal system to bear weight, meaning that the act of jumping rope can strengthen your bones. Indeed, young women and those who are post menopausal can greatly benefit from its impact on bone density. “Especially for female youth, we want to encourage activities like this during puberty to peak bone density, as it is much harder to increase bone density after the age of twenty,” Heather Milton, a certified strength and conditioning speciliast, adds.

Jumping rope is an excellent cardio option

If you’ve grown tired of your jogging routine or your daily yoga class, consider switching things up with a jump rope. Just a few minutes will get your heart pumping and your blood moving. In fact, Well+Good reports, jumping rope is much more time efficient than many other forms of cardio. “The benefits of jumping rope for 10 minutes per day have been proven to be just as effective in terms of cardiovascular health and caloric expenditure as running for 30 minutes,” says Joshua Vela, a personal trainer. Basically, you get the same amount of benefit in a third of the amount of time — definitely a big win.

Beyond creating chiseled calves and thighs, jumping rope also offers a great warm-up addition to your routine. Keeping your body guessing by adding new movements to your exercise regimen can not only tone different spots but also help you avoid getting burnt out. The outlet suggests pairing a quick jump rope session before you lift or perform strength training movements — that way, your heart rate can increase while still increasing your strength.

But, it’s vital to practice proper form by getting into a rhythm that feels good for your system and keeping your jumps relatively low. Amanda Kloots, a personal trainer, expounds, “You never want to jump higher than the rope is thick.”

A quick addition to your next sweat sesh, your jump rope can bring some levity to your workout.

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