I was looking in a catalog recently and came across an item called the airope. What is it? Basically, it’s a jumprope without the rope. It is two handles that each have a short length of rope attached to them. For a better idea, please see the picture below.
I guess the idea is to make it easier to do jump rope activities with people who may struggle to get the hang of it. The price – $35. Of course, for $5 I can buy a regular jump rope and do numerous activities with clients. What if they have problems getting used to using the rope? Wouldn’t it be easier to start them with the “non-rope” version? NO!!! Easier isn’t the point. Jumping rope is and always has been a great training tool. It helps to develop balance, coordination, and let’s not forget the plyometric benefits of the jumping itself. Why take away any of the benefits? If you have a client who can’t jump rope, loan them one and have them practice at home.
As for drills that I have clients do using the rope, here is a partial list:
- Two foot jumps in place
- One foot jumps in place
- Two foot lateral jumps
- Variations of form running while using a jumprope (high knees, etc)
- One/Two foot jumps while moving
Obviously it is important to start off with the easiest jumps and progress to more difficult ones. I feel that jumping rope is one activity that should be incorporated into your training plans regularly. I try to find a place for it at least once a week. Oh, and in case you were wondering, I use the $5 – $10 ropes. They work just fine and they keep the athleticism in the activity.