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Monthly Archives: July 2016

Know More About Skipping Rope Benefits

Naturally, not many people perform a skipping rope workout for a straight hour, but that is just for comparison. One estimate states that the benefits of skipping rope for ten minutes is about the equivalent of running a mile in eight minutes.

In addition, jumping rope is not as hard on the knees as running because the ball of the foot is absorbing much of the shock rather than the heel having the heavy impact such as happens in running. This is the reason it is a good exercise for seniors. A skipping rope workout is also used as a method of conditioning by professional athletes.

The benefits of skipping rope can be realized with any kind of cord or rope and a bit of persistence, without expensive training or equipment. Once you get in the habit of a skipping rope workout, you will surely find it an enjoyable part of your exercise routine that offers great value.

Jumping rope is excellent for working every muscle group in the body. Each muscle works extra hard just to keep you upright and tightens your muscles with each repetition. It works the upper body as you turn the rope over and over, and produces upper body burn. For the legs, your quads, hamstrings and calves are stressed with each jump, strengthening those muscles.

Here are a few reasons why jumping rope is one of the very best exercises :

# Build Agility & Quickness

Want to get “lighter on your feet?” Skip rope every day for a few minutes. When you jump rope on the balls of your feet, body connects with mind to make “neural muscular adjustments” to keep you balanced. Essentially, skipping rope improves your balance and quickness/coordination by making your mind focus on your feet for sustained periods of time, even if you’re not conscious of it. Boxers know this. Why do you think jumping rope is a favorite exercise for the best boxers in the world?

# Calorie Cooker
Very few exercises burn calories like jump rope. Even jumping at a very moderate rate burns 10 to 16 calories a minute. Work your jump rope exercise into three 10-minute rounds and you’re looking at 480 calories in half an hour. According to Science Daily, 10 minutes of skipping rope is about equivalent to running an 8-minute-mile. There’s a reason the American Heart Association created an entire movement around jumping rope (ever heard of Jump Rope for Heart?).

# Increase Bone Density
The medium impact of jumping rope increases bone density, but isn’t as hard on your joints as running because the impact of each jump is absorbed by both legs. In fact, according to Dr. Daniel W. Barry, a researcher who has studied the bones of the elderly and of athletes, the latest studies show simply jumping is one of the very best exercises for improving bone density.

# It’s Good For Your Brain
We know that exercise (even as little as 20 minutes) is good for the brain. But did you know that activities with BOTH physical and mental demands (like ballroom dancing or jumping rope) have higher impacts on cognitive functioning than exercise tasks alone (like the treadmill or stationary bike). Turns out the very best workouts for brain health involve coordination, rhythm, and strategy. So the next time you’re jumping rope, challenge yourself to try some jump rope tricks. Turns out they’re really good for your brain.

# Jump Rope Tech
We’ve come a long way from the beaded ropes from PE class. Modern fitness ropes come with ball-bearing handles, ultra-fast cables and easy sizing systems (and the color customization options are endless). New “smart” jump ropes will count your jumps. Even the new beaded ropes can be customized with your favorite color of ultra light, unbreakable beads.

# Affordability
Of all the fitness options out there, rope jumping is still one of the most affordable. Shoot, even runners need to fork it over for high end shoes. But jump ropes? Even a top of the line fitness jump rope is only $20. Very simple (but good) ropes can be purchased for as low as $3. And, depending on the surface you jump on, a rope should last you a while.




Why You Should Stretch?

Stretching. For many women it’s an afterthought, something you might do after you’re done with other, more important exercise, if you remember or have time, which is usually never. Increasingly, however, scientists are finding that for health, well-being, and quality of life, flexibility should move off the back burner and to the forefront of our minds.

In a recent study, Japanese researchers asked more than 500 women and men ages 20 to 83 to perform a “sit and reach” test, where they sit with legs extended and tried to touch their toes. They then examined their arteries for arterial stiffness, often a precursor to high blood pressure and heart disease. Turns out that after age 40, there’s a strong correlation between rigid muscles and stiff arteries. Specifically, those who had poor flexibility also had significantly stiffer artieries than their more limber peers.

Other studies have linked poor flexibility to high blood sugar, which increases diabetes risk, as well as greater risk for metabolic syndrome — another risk factor for heart disease.

Stretching is very important in beginning and ending an exercise. But its functions go beyond preventing strains and sprains. So why stretch?

# Stretching before beginning an exercise prevents injuries. It helps the muscles “warm-up” and prepare before divulging into more intense exercises. It helps prevent “pulled muscles”. It allows a longer range of motion. For instance, if you are going to do a strong punch without stretching, you will ‘shock’ your relaxed muscles into motion, thus it will cause pain and soreness.

# Stretching promotes better breathing and respiratory (or oxygen) flow. Stretching allows oxygen to flow better through your body and it also helps better blood circulation. Body pains and sores usually root from increased tightness and tension from the lack of oxygen that flows to the different parts of your body. Stretching allows the oxygen to move freely and move better.

# Stretching improves flexibility. When you constantly stretch, you are also making yourself more flexible, thus activities that require flexibility, such dancing and kicks, short sprints and dashes, even basic tasks such as lifting and tying your shoe, can become easier. Flexibility also wanes s people ages, so it’s best to regularly stretch so that you can maintain your flexibility.

# Stretching reduces stress and improves posture. Stress causes the muscles to tighten and knot, thus it can cause strain and back pains. Tension causes negative effects on your body. Muscles harden and slow down the flow of the oxygen (carried by the blood) to the brain which muddles thinking. Stretching brings back the oxygen flow and regulates it, re-oxygenating the brain and also the heart.

# Stretch after exercising. Lactic acid builds up in your muscles while you exercise which leads to fatigue and soreness. This can be remedied by “cooling down” exercises or post-exercise stretching. Post-exercise stretching can help in workout recovery, decreases muscle soreness that comes after the workout and ensures that your muscles and tendons are in good working order. If you stretch after exercising, you are conditioning your muscles, and, in a way, you are relaxing your muscles after a vigorous regimen.