Jump Rope Workout

So far, I’ve showed you How to Jump Rope and also 7 Jump Rope Tricks, but we need to tie everything together with a a few great Jump Rope Workouts.  

All these jump rope workouts I list below are considered High Intensity Interval Training workouts, so if you are out of shape, they may be too much for you.  But if you think you can handle them, these workouts can help take your fitness to the next level! 

Jump Rope Workout #1

Timed Jumping Rope

For this timed workout, which is the most advanced of the three, you will try to get as many reps as possible in 30 seconds, then rest 30-90 seconds, then repeat for 5-10 cycles.  The rest period depends on your fitness level, but I would stick with some specific amount of time, let’s say 30 seconds rest.   You want to keep your heart rate high, feel the burn in your lungs, your shoulders, and core too.  I try to shoot for 100 reps in 30 seconds, although I just miss almost every time (so frustrating!).  How many can you do? 

What I’ve found is the limitation for how fast and for how long I can jump rope is not my cardio, but the muscular endurance of my shoulders.  Be sure when you are maxing out that you keep your core tight as well, because your core will be engaged intensely.  As you’ll find out, jumping rope as fast as you can just about works every muscle in your body!

Jump Rope Workout #2

Sliding Scale Jumping Rope

As you are completing a jumping rope workout, chances are you will get tired over time (at least if you’re human).  One great way of keeping the volume high, but with a manageable intensity is to create a sliding scale.  You start out with let’s say 500 jumping rope reps in a row, then rest, decrease by 50 reps to 450, then complete again, until you get down to 50 reps.  So it looks like this:

(Rest 30-90 seconds in between each set)


The total amount of reps is a solid 1,050 accomplished in 6 sets, but the intensity is manageable because the amount of reps per set decreases over time. 

Jump Rope Workout #3

“Pick a Number” Jumping Rope

Probably the most common workout I do, which can also be a warm up depending on how fast you jump, is picking a number of say 100, or 200 jump rope reps.  You complete those 200 reps at a reasonably fast pace, then rest until you catch your breath (so don’t need to rest for a specific time period), then go again.  You can complete 5-10 cycles depending on your fitness level, which would be 1,000 to 2,000 total reps. 

If you are just starting out, volume (total number of reps) is something you should track and increase over time.  So you might do 300 reps one workout, than 350 the next, and so on.  This will ensure you get better and stronger over time, because your workouts will naturally become more difficult.

These workouts are only about 10-20 minutes, but they can help you increase your speed, stamina, and help melt that extra layer of fat off your body.  If you are more advanced, you can try one of these workouts after a jog, lifting, or some other type of activity.

Let me know if you like these workouts! 



  1. profile avatar
    @ScottBradleyOC Aug 20, 2010 - 11:38 #

    Awesome Suggestions Marc! Going to do one of these today!

    I am thinking I am going to do the first one, and then alternate between #1, and #3 because I really like to push myself!

    Love the content on the blog!

    Keep it up!

  2. profile avatar
    Marc Perry Aug 20, 2010 - 11:51 #

    Thanks, Scott. I think you’re going to enjoy it. Don’t be surprised if you have trouble walking tomorrow because of very sore calves! It’s all good though.

  3. profile avatar
    @ScottBradleyOC Aug 20, 2010 - 12:05 #


    More pain = higher metabolism = more fat loss = a happier Scott 🙂

  4. profile avatar
    Hassan Aug 20, 2010 - 17:41 #

    Dear Marc, thanks alot for your valuable inofrmation.I tried almost workout # 1, but during the interval recovery time, i found that my recovery time which i need to proceed the another intensity rep,is more than 90 seconds, which is the ultimate suggested recovery time,almost i need about 120 seconds, do you think i’v bad experience or it could be improved by porcess of time?, i think that my fitness and stamina need more effort. However i obseved on the second day i got a magnificent “afterburn” (EPOC).

    1. profile avatar
      Marc Perry Aug 20, 2010 - 17:53 #

      Hey Hassan, the first workout is a very advanced workout and you should rest as long as you need to catch your breadth, or for your heart rate to come down. The 30-90 second time span I listed was just for reference.

      Over time, your should be able to complete more reps in less time and decrease the rest between sets. It takes practice. Additionally, if your jump rope form is not great, you may be expending a lot of energy. As your jump rope form improves, your efficiency will improve, which will allow you to jump rope longer without getting tired.

      Hope this is helpful!

      Hope this helps!

  5. profile avatar
    Hassan Aug 21, 2010 - 16:56 #

    Yeah, thanks Marc, ithink that i need to focus more on my jump rope form, it should be properly as you explained in your video, but do u think that’s possible to practice (HIIT) on one foot jumping as illustrated on “jumping rope tricks video”.or it might cause severe injury?

  6. profile avatar
    Anna Aug 26, 2010 - 13:42 #

    I enjoyed the articles on jumping rope. As a child (umpteen years ago) that was my #1 exercise. As a now senior, I might not be able to do all of the workouts but i will enjoy doing the ones I can. Thanks again for bringing the attention of jumping rope back to the forefront.

  7. profile avatar
    jump program Dec 03, 2010 - 08:12 #

    I also included jumping rope to my workout routines for jumping higher. Very effective. It is also effective for loosing weight and strengthening the leg muscle fiber. I enjoyed doing this workout and I can do this workout anywhere I want.

  8. profile avatar
    carrinha mazda 6 Mar 20, 2011 - 18:04 #

    This is for certain a need to examine 🙂 , many thanks for sharing this facts i truly appreciate and can attempt out on my very own diligences. many thanks a bunch.

  9. profile avatar
    Hassan Awan Apr 11, 2011 - 12:14 #

    Hey Marc, great article! You’ve stated the following about jumping rope, which I read with great interest:

    “Starting out, you can use some more basic interval training techniques, like 50-100 reps, then rest 30-90 seconds and do 5-10 cycles.”

    I’ve tried the above and found it to be fairly easy, so using the jump rope, what kind of interval techniques, reps, rest periods and cycles would you recommend for someone who is at an intermediate or even advanced level? I should add that I’m someone who displays both ectomorphic and mesomorphic traits, though more so the former; as such, I’m currently aiming to add bulk to my frame in the form of muscle, and so I’m performing a Push-Pull routine based around compound movements, three times a week, and want to use jump rope as a conditioning tool twice a week, on days I’m not lifting.

    Thanks for taking the time to read this!

    1. profile avatar
      Marc Perry Apr 11, 2011 - 12:23 #

      @Hassan Awan – Thanks for the question! As you get more advanced you can change some of the variables to make the workout harder (1) the pace can increase (number of revolutions in a certain amount of time), (2) the number of reps, (3) use harder jump rope variations, and (4) decrease the rest periods.

      For example, you can try doing 100 reps in 30 seconds, or time yourself to see how fast you can go. You can also try upping it to 150, or 200 reps, with 30-90 seconds in between each set. Finally, my favorite is doing consecutive double unders, which means you are spinning the jump rope twice for every one jump. I have a sample in this video: http://bit.ly/cIlxkG. May take some practice! The routine sounds great, I really like push/pull routines based on compound movements, just make sure over time that you are lifting more weight and eating enough calories/protein to help fuel muscle growth. It takes time to build muscle, so patience is really important.

  10. profile avatar
    Hassan Awan Apr 11, 2011 - 12:59 #

    Thanks for the really useful tips – I’ll be sure to incorporate them into my training programme (including the jump rope techniques you demonstrate in your video)!

  11. profile avatar
    Paul May 22, 2011 - 02:24 #

    One thing I’ve noticed is that my second set of jumps felt better than my first set. Any reason why? Or didn’t I do enough the first set?

    1. profile avatar
      Marc Perry May 25, 2011 - 19:16 #

      @Paul – I think it’s pretty common for a second set of any exercise to feel a bit better than the first. Your body is warmed up, is comfortable with the movement and intensity, so the second set can feel better than the first.

  12. profile avatar
    Daniel Jun 11, 2011 - 05:20 #

    Will this rope skipping reps improve my vertical by any chance?

    1. profile avatar
      Marc Perry Jun 11, 2011 - 11:15 #

      @Daniel – I think so. I’m sure there are tons of blogs out there that describe various ways to increase your vertical, but I know for sure jumping rope can help improve quickness and explosiveness. My brother was able to dunk a soccer ball when he was a teenager at only 5’11” and one method he used to increase his vertical jumping rope.

  13. profile avatar
    Surya Jun 21, 2011 - 01:18 #

    @ Marc,
    I have recently put on a lot of weight and i wanted to reduce the fat % in the body with swiss ball and Cardio(jump rope). I started jump roping today with 100 reps/set. could you just help me out by telling how many reps and sets would u recommend to reduce wt. My target is to reduce wt in a span of 2 months….

    1. profile avatar
      Marc Perry Jun 21, 2011 - 12:43 #

      @Surya – Thanks for the question. The amount of weight you lose has A LOT more to do with your nutrition than it does with jump roping/cardio. Jump roping can certainly help you burn some extra calories, but ultimately creating a calorie deficit by eating less food is most important. You can check out a bunch of nutrition articles I’ve written by looking under the topic “Nutrition Tips” on the top right hand side of this page. You should also check out my free Get Lean Guide if you have not done so already.

      So with that said, I would set a goal of doing let’s say 1000 reps 3 days per week as you get in better shape. The challenge is that jumping rope is very repetitive and if you gained a lot of weight, it may be hard on your joints. I wouldn’t do more than 3 days per week until you get in better shape, then you can increase it to 5 days per week, whatever feels good for you. The point is that workouts should get harder and harder over time. For example, you can shoot for 300 reps 3x per week, then the next week, shoot for 350 reps 3x per week, then 400 reps 3x per and so on. When you get to 1000, then you can continue increasing the number of reps, or add a day, just slowly but surely increase the difficulty of the workouts.

      Hope this is helpful and best of luck.

  14. profile avatar
    Marilú Jun 21, 2011 - 16:45 #

    Hi Marc!
    Great article, it really helps me a lot because i don’t have enough money to go to a gym.
    I was just wondering, you mention a couple of times that jumping the rope is a great warmup session.
    Could i still use it as a cardio session?
    I’ve been jumping the rope for 2 weeks now, for 30 minutes, i find it easier than running because my neighborhood isn’t really safe.
    Or i could be doing something much more efficient than jumping the rope?
    I’ve been counting my calories, and i want to lose 12 pounds…
    P.S. excuse my poor english

    1. profile avatar
      Marc Perry Jun 22, 2011 - 08:25 #

      @Marilu – Happy you enjoyed the article! I definitely believe jumping rope can be used as a cardio workout and it’s actually the preferred workout for many boxers who are in incredible shape. I also think jumping rope is one of the most efficient workouts you can do. I do recommend over time increasing the total amount of reps you do each workout and sometimes using the “timed” jump rope method, where you see how many reps you can do in 30 seconds, then do it 10x. That’s a great workout right there. Also, you can check out a video I did on 7 types of jump rope variations you can do. To get in really great shape, my favorite is the “Double Under” – https://www.builtlean.com/2010/08/13/jump-rope-tricks-to-keep-it-fresh/. If you are getting bored of jumping rope, you can always throw in some metabolic bodyweight workouts – https://www.builtlean.com/2011/03/24/metabolic-conditioning-circuit-for-burning-fat/.

      I think your focus on monitoring calorie intake is VERY smart. That’s the most important part for successful fat loss. Keep you the good work!

  15. profile avatar
    Surya Jun 22, 2011 - 01:25 #


    Thanks a ton for your valuable suggestions i have started with 400reps 3xweek. As suggested would increase the reps every week to get into better shape. I would certainly look at the articles mentioned.

  16. profile avatar
    Marilú Jun 24, 2011 - 16:37 #

    Thanks for your feedback
    i’ve just started doing this..but i haven’t felt a lot of change
    according to loseit.com, i should consume 1,152 calories according to my BMR
    my question is
    if i’m working out, i still have to consume those calories? Right?
    I mean no matter what I burn, I still should complete those 1,152 (which according to the site are the calories i need daily)
    because a person who worksout, should consume more nutrients and proteins to have the energy and to burn the fat…right?
    Hope you can clear me this out
    thanks 🙂

    1. profile avatar
      Marc Perry Jun 27, 2011 - 11:48 #

      @Marilu – I guess the first thing to point out is if you just started doing it, then you probably will not feel a lot of change. Changes in your body take time. 0.5lb to 1lb per week of fat loss is a great pace of fat loss and one that can be sustainable. We all know what happens to people who try to crash diet and lose a bunch of weight right away…they fail.

      With that said, most health organizations do not recommend going below 1200 calorie intake for woman, but I feel it’s fairly arbitrary. 1100 calorie intake for a small woman sounds reasonable to me. For more on calorie intake, check out my article: How Many Calories Should I Eat To Lose Weight?. By the way, I’m a big fan of the lose it application and I think tracking your calorie intake is a great way to learn more about your eating habits, as I discuss in 7 Reasons to Track Your Food Intake.

      The idea is that if you eat less calories than you burn, your body will use fat as fuel, which is what you want of course. So even if you are exercising, you still want to keep your calories lower and create a calorie deficit. The size of the calorie deficit depends on how much you are exercise vs. how much you are eating.

  17. profile avatar
    Daniel Aug 08, 2011 - 04:47 #

    Marc do you mind to design a high intensity rope workout for me to improve my vertical? I’m 16 this year standing at the height of 5”1.

  18. profile avatar
    Brian Mar 30, 2012 - 21:00 #

    you made a mistake in your explanation, i am not sure if someone else has corrected you above, and feel free to delete my comment afterwards.
    you stated that:
    “You start out with let’s say 300 jumping rope reps in a row, then rest, decrease by 50 reps to 450, then complete again, until you get down to 50 reps.”

    but in your example you added 150 on top of the 300 (showing 450) instead of decreasing to 250.
    Farther down where you show how it would go down it is right. this little thing just caught my attention.

    I also wanted to say thank you! You taught me little things I did not know and am happy I stumbled on to your site.
    Cheers, Brian

    1. profile avatar
      Marc Perry, CSCS, CPT Mar 30, 2012 - 21:53 #

      @Brian – Made the change. That was a mistake on my part. Thank you for letting me know!

  19. profile avatar
    Uros Sep 17, 2012 - 14:29 #


    Thanks for your feedback… I found some of your workouts very helpful, but I have a question about this one (Jump Rope Workout #1). I was jumping rope for about 2 months before I tried your workout, and I was doing 1 min and 15 sec jumping and then 30 sec rest for 10 cycles. That is about 1300-1400 reps total. Then I tried your workout (I can do about 80 reps in 30 sec with 30-40 sec rest between), but I was not that tired as usual despite I’ve done 13 cycles and I could do even more, but my abs started to hurt me badly so I had to stop. So, since I’d like to build up my stamina AND strenght what workout would you suggest me? Or should I do both of these, just in different time? Thanks in advance.

    1. profile avatar
      Marc Perry, CSCS, CPT Sep 20, 2012 - 22:02 #

      @Uros – I would do different types of jump rope workouts and be sure to add some resistance training to your program as well. If you are doing less repetitions, you should make the workouts harder by (1) increasing the intensity, which are you are doing by maxing out 80 reps in 30 seconds, but (2) you should also consider resting less between sets, which will make the exercise more difficult. On the other days when you do more volume/repetitions, you don’t need to push it as hard, or intensely. Good luck!

  20. profile avatar
    Clint Jul 29, 2016 - 12:40 #

    I love these, especially the 30 second max effort. Any advice on how many times to do the HIIT intervals a week if just trying to maintain weight? I love your articles and programs, keep up the excellent work! Thanks!!

    1. profile avatar
      Kristin Aug 01, 2016 - 14:16 #

      Hi Clint,

      Glad you’re enjoying the jump rope workouts, and content in general! If your goal is maintenance, we recommend performing 3-4 workouts per week that include full-body strength circuits and HIIT. This will help keep your metabolism high so that you stay lean & strong.

      -Kristin, BuiltLean Coach & Managing Editor

  21. profile avatar
    Florence Aug 16, 2016 - 00:39 #

    Great article…how often should I do the jump rope HIIT if I am also doing calisthenics so as to lose fat and build a bit of muscle

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