Benefits of skipping
Benefits of skipping | Pictured Lilian Dikmans and Misagh Norouzi / FIGHTMAG

Skipping rope training is beneficial for a boxer’s fitness level along with improving body mechanics and coordination. Noticeable short term benefits include cardio respiratory fitness, muscle strength and endurance.

Include skipping rope training to a boxing workout for developing vital skills required for sparring and competition such as:

  1. Balance
  2. Timing and rhythm
  3. Coordination
  4. Footwork
  5. Agility
  6. Conditioning
  7. Low Impact on Joints
  8. Cardio

Benefits of Skipping

1. Balance – Skip on the balls of feet as this forces you to balance every time you land.

2. Timing and rhythm – Practice turning your wrists, hopping over the rope and keep repeating. When more confident, add speed to this exercise by turning the rope faster, assisting your ability to time movements and throw punches without losing balance. Punches lack power when feet are incorrectly placed, punching with expert timing assists in hitting an opponent with noticeable force. Timing is more important than lifting weights when it comes to power punching.

3. Coordination – Skipping with a rope is a complex process for the brain to process, it involves executing various tasks at once, hand-eye coordination by using the hands to spin the rope and keep track of the rope with your eyes knowing when to jump having the right timing to make precise jumps.

A boxer needs coordination to move around the ring, punch, defend and counterattack.

4. Footwork – Skipping rope develops footwork for ring movement. The key to throwing a heavy punch is having a solid base underneath the torso. Moving feet in the proper manner allows the boxer to throw crisp and clean punches that cause damage, and helping to avoid an opponent’s punch. Skipping at a fast pace gives you confidence that you can move your feet quickly in the ring.

5. Agility – Skipping rope promotes agility, strengthening leg muscles and improving endurance along with reaction time.

6. Conditioning – Boxers often run to build endurance, in the gym skipping rope is one of the first exercises undertaken. Like running, skipping rope builds stamina and endurance. This conditioning assists in the later rounds of a bout, as if a boxer lacks stamina, their lungs will burn and will find difficulty trying to survive the round and get back to the stool in the corner.

7. Low Impact on Joints – This exercise causes less impact on your knees than running. Knees and joints are made of bone, cartilage, ligaments, and tendons that can be damaged and worn down over time especially in combat sports. Excessive running also wears down knees, for a bit of variety in a workout, replace some of running with skipping rope.

8. Cardio – Skipping rope improves both cardio and endurance of the leg muscles especially the calves in a different way to running as with movement in the ring much stress is placed on the calves for agility in movement.

You may also like: Top 4 core exercises for Muay Thai practitioners.

Bobby Mayne
Bobby Mayne is the Head Coach at Boxrite Boxing Club and author of several boxing coaching books including the bestselling "The Art of Boxing: Your Guide to the Sweet Science". Mayne has been involved in boxing since 1981. He has trained professional boxers such as Australian Daniel Dawson to compete at the world level, becoming a world contender and ultimately the WBF World Superwelterweight Champion. He also assisted in the training of top boxers from the Philippines including Rey Megrino and Rey Loreto, who were both successful in winning their respective WBC Regional and WBO World Flyweight titles.