Few exercise methods can compete with the grown-up version of "jump rope", when it comes to improving cardiovascular efficiency. Skipping rope is good for, "endurance" for certain types of exercise, as just a few minutes of jump rope can be as taxing as running or other aerobic or cardiovascular activities. It is often estimated that running can burn, on average, about 600 calories per hour. Skipping rope is estimated to burn about 700. Of course, not too many people are going to skip rope for an hour, but you get the point. One estimate is that rope skipping for 10 minutes is the approximate equivalent of running an eight-minute mile.

Skipping rope is considered to be less destructive to knees than running as more of the shock is absorbed beginning with the ball of the foot rather than the blunt impact upon the heel experienced in running. It is for this reason that, not only do many professional athletes use it as a conditioning method, but it is often practiced by senior exercisers as well. As with running, and other cardiovascular exercises, it should be a part of a larger exercise program which includes flexibility exercises and strength training.

When an individual has a broad-based exercise program which includes such activities, including rope skipping and other forms of exercise, they can anticipate a broad range of health benefits as well. Regular exercise can help strengthen the cardiovascular system, regulate mood swings, improve the immune system, and help protect against a wide range of degenerative conditions which tend to become progressively common as we age.

While many other forms of exercise can require special training and/or expensive equipment, the physical benefits of skipping rope can begin to be acquired using almost any old piece of cord and a few minute's patience. While there are ropes specifically designed for skipping available at smartphysicalworkout.com from entry level handle and rope to digital skipping ropes. The physical benefits of skipping rope are many, and it is an activity which you will probably find to be a valuable part of your exercise program.

The muscles that jumping rope targets the most is well, everything. Every little muscle group in your body has to work extra hard to keep yourself upright and tight through each repetition. Then you have the repeated stress to your calves, quads and hamstrings during each rep and the extreme upper body burn from turning that rope over and over. For me personally, the most burn that I feel while jumping rope is in my shoulders, wrist, forearms, arms, calves, and trapezius muscles. The trapezius muscles are that bump that you see in the mirror that pops out from your neck and goes into your shoulder. They help to elevate the shoulders and also help to stabilize the upper body in certain movements.

But the one big thing I like so much about the jump rope is the after burn effect that it really creates. It's a lot like sprinting at high intensities for a long duration of time. The huge amount of lactic acid buildup is quite critical if you want to burn a lot of calories in a short amount of time and really transform your body. Studies have shown that the more lactic acid that you can create within your body, especially throughout the entire body at once, the more growth hormone that gets released. The cool thing about growth hormone is that it has been proven to help people drop pounds of belly fat. That is why a lot of professional bodybuilders take the stuff to help them get ready for competition. And again the easiest way to increase this output the most is through high lactic acid total body training such as jumping rope or weight lifting circuits where you push yourself to exhaustion for 12-15 repetitions.

A good workout to start off with to jump rope is try and go for one minute straight. This is a lot harder than you think it is. I suggest setting up a little area in your garage with a clock on the wall and some good music playing, this will help to get you in the zone. Start jumping and watch the clock until it hits 1 minute. If you mess up during any part of the movement, then you have to restart all over again.

All in all, jumping rope to lose weight is such an awesome exercise that a lot of us have forgotten about since we are no longer kids. But if you're still hung up on the power of a little piece of rope that can change the shape of your body, take a look at boxers and their physiques. They are all ripped, muscular with almost no body fat. And a lot of their training is based on jumping rope.

Author's Bio: 

The concept of Smartphysicalworkout was developed by Daniel Green who has been involved with the Health and Fitness industry since 1999, providing health and fitness products, services to both the local and online community.

After a slow start, the Smartphysicalworkout.com has grown into a well-received site for the Health and Fitness community and the team strive to offer the best quality products available, customer service and satisfaction will always be the key to their success.