It's difficult to overstate the importance of warming up for exercise. Jump rope is often used as a warm up for other forms of exercise and is a great way to get blood flowing to all the different muscles you'll likely be engaging. However, if jump rope is your exercise activity for the day, it is wise to do some dynamic stretching prior to getting started.
Simply put, stretching helps elongate your muscles and warm them up before being asked to perform at a high level. Stretching sends added blood flow to your muscles, warming them up and allowing them to increase their range of motion. These will help you prevent injury and feel great as you jump.
Why Dynamic Stretches?
According to healthline.com, "Dynamic stretches can be used to help warm up your body before exercising and mimic the movement of the activity or sport you're about to perform." Dynamic stretching before starting jump rope activity prevents tearing your muscles because you don't hold your muscles under tension as you would with traditional stretching.
What Stretches are Best for Jump Rope?
- Grass Grabbers: Focusing on your hamstrings, this stretch will keep the large muscles in the back of your legs loose and ready to support the smaller muscles lower in your legs.
- Alternating Quad Stretch: The other big muscle in your legs, it's important they're ready to go before jumping. Be sure to keep your knee in line with your hip and push your foot away from you to increase the intensity.
- Arm Circles: Shoulder mobility is essential to longevity with jump rope. Don't skip this one!
- The "Greatest Stretch": A total body stretch that targets your hip-flexor, glutes and spine. It essentially functions as a deep lunge with a rotation.
- Calf and Achilles Stretch: Alternating a straight and bent leg in a push up position or bear hold will target your lower leg.
Check out this video for demonstrations on all the stretches listed above with Jump Rope Pro Kaylee Woodard from Learnin' the Ropes.