Start slow, give your body time to adjust.
Jumping rope requires lower body strength and coordination, but you can develop the skill with a little patience and consistency. Working your way up to 10 minutes of continuous jumping is difficult in many of the same ways as working your way up to 30 minutes of running, so it’s important to start slowly so your body has enough time to adjust. “Go at your own pace,” Mrs. Henry said.
Going slow is especially important if you’re just starting to exercise after a period of inactivity, if your body isn’t used to the impact of jumping, or if you’re recovering from injury. It’s also important to talk to your doctor before starting any new exercise program.
At first it may be enough to do one or two jumps at a time until you are sufficiently aware of how your feet and the rope should move together. Or try jumping into place as a way to break it down into simpler components. Stand as you normally would, with the jump rope behind you, and jump without swinging the rope. This will help you familiarize yourself with the jump movement, while also establishing the coordination of rope holding while jumping.
You can also swing the rope over your head and let it stop before it reaches your feet, then step over it to develop a sense of timing for when the rope will hit the ground.
Once your body is used to jumping, it shouldn’t feel too hard. “You want to be relaxed and easy in your moves,” says Dwight Pratchett, a former professional boxer and boxing coach in Houston. “If you’re tense, you’re using up your gas too quickly.” for mr. Pratchett has been a valuable tool for improving footwork and aerobic capacity, both in his job as a coach and in his own fitness regime.
If jumping doesn’t feel right, it’s important to watch your form. “You really want to master the basics,” said Mrs. Henry. This includes jumping on the balls of your feet, rather than flat-footed, with a slight bend at your knees. In the beginning, it’s best to jump with both feet at the same time, until you feel comfortable enough to alternate.
“It’s hard to get that rhythm, but once you get the hang of it, you feel it,” Mr Pratchett said. “It’s almost like dancing.”