If you are looking for a fun full body strength training along with cardio, hit the battle ropes! While battle ropes mainly target your upper body and core, your legs get training as well. This is a high intensity workout that is rather fast in nature, where you work hard for a short period of time and then rest. The main advantage of this type of training vs traditional cardio is the higher calorie burn per minute. Also, you burn more calories and fat for up to 24 hours after finishing.
There are so many different ways that you can incorporate battle ropes into your current workout routine:
- When you have only 20 min to workout
- When you are doing your upper body strength training, use ropes at the beginning of the workout for 5 min to warm up
- When you are doing strength training and would like to incorporate some full body cardio in between sets (hello extra calorie burn!)
- Need to relieve stress? Playing around with battle ropes for even 10 min can help the tension.
Here are some of the basic moves that you can start with. Perform each for 30 seconds, rest 10 seconds in between.
All of the exercises below (except jumping jacks) can be done on the floor or while balancing on the Bosu ball. If you haven’t done the battle rope training before, start with the floor and progress to Bosu. Also, all the exercises that call for quarter squat position, you can go into a half squat as well. By doing this you target more of your glute muscles and little less quads. Quarter squat will definitely target and activate your quads more. Being in a half squat is harder on the legs but it also gives you more power and you get stronger support for the upper body work.
The one thing that is very important when using battle ropes is to engage your core . Number one, to prevent the injury of your lower back and number two, engaging your core will give you more power and you will be able to engage all your working muscles better.
Side to side slams – While standing in the quarter squat position, holding rope with both hands, slam the rope from one side to another.
Jumping Jacks – Starting with a reverse grip on the rope, simply do jumping jacks while holding the rope. When you are performing this move, try to get the rope up as much as you can. This requires a lot of shoulder flexibility and strength, so do not get discouraged if the rope doesn’t go all the way up like your arms do when you are doing jumping jacks without the rope. With practice, it will become easier and easier.
Alternating slams/waves – Starting in a quarter squat position, move your arms up and down simultaneously – as one arm goes up the other arm stay down. Try and create unformed waves while slamming. The more uniformed the slams, the more longer you will be able to sustain this move. Do not be afraid to throw your whole body into it, especially legs. As you are simultaneously moving the arms up and down, squat up and down and use your whole body to help you power up.
Double Arm Slam – starting in a squat position, hold the rope with both hands. As you get up from your squatted position, lift your arms up above you head; as you are going back to the squatted position, slam the rope down. Repeat. Advanced modification here is to jump up as you are getting up from the squat.
Arm Circles – while in a quarter squat position, circle your arm by forming full circles, going all the way around. Do one arm and then another (15-20 seconds per arm). Legs can help you here, squat up and down as you make circles for more powerful movement.
Claps/snakes – in a quarter squat position, move your arms in and out as if you were clapping. Try forming uniformed “snake ” like pattern with the rope as you clap.
The above mentioned are great battle rope moves to start with. I added few more below that you can try but if you go on YouTube, there are so many more. Just type in battle rope workouts.
Russian twists – hold the rope with both hands and slam side to side as you twist.
Side lunge slams – hold the rope with both hands and slam it as you are lunging side to side.
Alternating slams/ waves into burpees – alternate slams for 10 seconds and then jump into burpee, chest to the floor and back up for another 10 seconds of slams. Repeat and do as many as you can!
Next time when you are at your local gym, give it a try. It is an awesome full body workout that will have you sweat within minutes. And the best thing is, the feeling good and strong will last for hours to come!
Until next time,