Best skipping ropes: how weighted jump ropes can improve fitness and strength

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What is the best skipping rope for beginners, strength trainers and cardio lovers? We tested one of the most famous brands to find out. 

Skipping may be all the rage, but is your childhood rope enough to help you reap the benefits of the exercise? That’s the question many of us are asking, as the options on the market become increasingly fancy.

While anything you can jump over is enough for a basic cardio session, using specially designed skill ropes or weighted skippers does come with extra perks, including building upper body strength and improving control and co-ordination

Meriam Ahari, Strong Women’s editor, experienced an extra boost to her training when she succumbed to her cousin’s recommendation of a skipping rope set costing a whopping £217. “She mentioned that she dropped a huge amount on a Crossrope – which prompted an eye-roll emoji or two, but she swore it was worth the expense,” says Meriam. “Of course, being a fitness editor, I had to see if these high-end skipping ropes really lived up to their self-dubbed title of ‘the Ferrari of skipping ropes’.

“I tested the Get Fit set which includes four different ropes with varying thickness and weight: ¼lb and ½lb ropes (meant for cardio) and 1lb and 2lb ropes (to build strength). My first impression was how smooth my swinging was. While it claims to train more muscles than you would using an average rope, I’m skeptical because essentially you’re doing the same exact move. 

“However, I did feel that my skips were much more fluid and efficient – I could get more reps in without tripping over the rope, it swung seamlessly, and the heavier weighted ropes made each movement feel more concentrated than usual (the 1lb rope made my forearms burn like crazy). At times, the 1lb and 2lb ropes hurt my ankles if I missed a skip, so I suggest using the lighter ropes for double-unders and the heavier ropes for your single jumps,” Meriam continues.

crossropes-review-strong-women-tested-meriam-ahari
Best skipping rope: Meriam tested the Crossrope

But are they worth it? “I understand why my cousin loves these so much – skipping is a different experience than with an ordinary rope. They come with a lifetime warranty (thank goodness), an app with skipping rope workouts, and are impossible to get tangled. Plus, the interchangeable ergonomic handles have a patented “fast clip system” that allowed me to alternate quickly and easily between the lighter and heavier ropes. If you love skipping and are certain that you’ll use them a minimum of once or twice a week, I believe they’re worth the investment,” Meriam says. 

But don’t fret if you don’t have a spare couple of hundred quid to spend on a skipping rope. We’ve found some of the best on the market that will take your skipping up a notch, whether your goal is to gain strength or skip speedily. 

  • Dope Rope Heavy Muay Thai Rope 2.0

    Best skipping rope: heavy Muay Thai rope
    Best skipping rope: heavy Muay Thai rope

    This rope might be designed for martial arts, but you can use it for any skipping you want. Weighing 500g, it’s perfect for adding upper body strength during your cardio session.

    Shop Heavy Muay Thai Rope, £29.99

  • Corezone Sweat-Proof Jump Rope

    Best skipping rope: Corezone
    Best skipping rope: Corezone

    For those who really want to whizz through their sets, try this lightweight rope with sturdy handles. 

    Shop Sweat Proof Jump Rope, £19.95

  • Tangram LED Smart Rope

    Best skipping rope: Tangram Smart Rope
    Best skipping rope: Tangram Smart Rope

    If it’s hi-tech kit you’re after, the Tangram LED Smart Rope is a slightly more affordable solution. The selling point is that it can project your fitness data in midair as you jump, as well as report your session back to your phone. 

    Shop Tangram LED Smart Rope, £79.95

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