Jumping rope has tons of benefits: improved heart muscle, bone density, coordination and mental health – just to name a few of the most important. To enjoy these benefits and get the most out of your jump rope, however, it’s vital that you adjust your rope properly for your height, body proportions, and planned workout. Doing so will keep your workout safe and effective, and it’s fairly easy to do.
Finding the proper length for yourself
Follow the steps below to find the perfect rope length for you:
1. Stand with one foot on the middle of the rope.
2. Pull the handles upward until the rope is taut.
3. If you are a beginner, adjust the length of the rope so the tops of the handles come up to your shoulders. As speed is not the objective, a longer rope is ideal for children and beginners. A longer jump rope will slow things down and compensate for timing that is not perfect.
If you are an advanced user and speed jumping is your goal, opt for a shorter rope. In this case, adjust the length of the rope so the tops of the handles come up to your armpits or just below them.
If you want to perform Double Unders, a popular exercise in which the rope rotates around your body twice per jump instead of just once, adjust the length of the rope so the tops of the handles come up tothe middle of your chest.
4. Proper rope length also depends on your form. If you jump rope with your elbows further away from your body, you may want to make the rope longer.
5. Pay attention to signs that your rope is not adjusted properly after you start your workout as well. Your jump rope may not be the perfect length for you if, as you jump, your rope does not make a perfect arc that lightly skims the ground. If there is excess rope slamming into the ground, for example, you will need to shorten it. Your arms should just barely move while turning the jump rope — all the movement should be from your wrists.
Adjusting the length
For traditional, “non-adjustable” jump ropes, if the length is too long for you, you can just tie as many knots on it as you need till you reach the desired length, although this can sometimes be cumbersome and interfere with the swing of the rope.
As for wire jump ropes with screw-type adjusters, you can adjust the length by:
- Loosening the holding screw at the top of the handle.
- Slide the cord through the opening until it is at the correct length.
- Tighten the screw and check that the rope is at the right length. (You may need to repeat this step a couple of times until you’re happy with the jump rope length.)
- Once you are happy with the length of the rope, clip off the excess wire with wire cutters. Don’t forget to keep the small cap at the end of the cord so you can put it over the new end to protect the wire from fraying.
For jump ropes with an adjustment clip stored in the handle for easy adjustment, you’ll need to do the following:
- Remove the cap from the handle.
- Extend the rope through the bottom.
- Loosen the adjustment mechanism.
- Move it to the desired position along the jump rope.
- Tighten it.
- Replace the cover and cut with scissors if desired.
For best performance, it’s often recommend that you avoid bunching up your jump rope inside the handle with this type of rope because doing so can cause the rope to rub against the inside of the handle, slowing rotation and causing tangling.
As jump rope guru Bernadette Robinson says, “Your jump rope measurement is going to be very important and it can make or break your jump rope routine.” Be sure to follow the above tips to adjust your jump rope to the right length so you can get the most out of your workout and improve faster.