How To Jump Rope Like a Boxer For Beginners

Jumping rope is an iconic boxing drill for good reason. It combines cardio, coordination, dexterity, and footwork all in one exercise.

Jumping rope is all about timing and rhythm. The lightning speed and cool tricks achieved by advanced boxers comes with plenty of practice. Beginners should incorporate jump rope exercises and drills into their training on a regular basis.

Why Do Boxers Jump Rope?

Boxers jump rope because it benefits them in the ring. Jumping rope has many benefits for endurance, coordination, and balance.

Here are four (4) reasons boxers jump rope:

1. Increase stamina and endurance

Jumping rope is great cardio to warm-up or get a total body workout.

2. Improve coordination

Jumping rope teaches you to split your focus between your hands and your feet.

3. Loosen the wrists

All the rope motion is coming from the wrists, keeping them loose and flexible.

4. Improve footwork

Jumping rope is a go-to drill for keeping boxers light on their feet.

Step-By-Step Jump Rope Tutorial For Beginners:

Before you learn how to jump rope like a boxer, you must get comfortable with the basics. The hardest part of jumping rope is getting your hands and feet to work in unison. Beginners may feel awkward, but you will see results with practice.

Follow along with FightCamp trainer Tommy Duquette and these three (3) steps to get started:

How To Jump Rope Like a Boxer 

Step 1: Get the rope over your head.

Tommy Duquette Jump Rope For Beginners Step 1

  • Keep your elbows bent at a 90-degree angle, close to your body. Stand with the rope behind you.
  • Use a rotating motion in your wrists to bring the rope up over your body, lifting your toes from the balls of your feet to catch the rope as it comes down.
  • Try to repeat this 10 times, catching the rope under your feet every time.

Step 2: Get your body over the rope.

Tommy Duquette Jump Rope For Beginners Step 2

  • Stand in the same starting position.
  • This time, instead of catching the rope with your feet make a small jump and let the rope pass under both feet.
  • As the rope swings around you again, catch it under your feet just as in the first step.
  • Try to repeat this 5 times.

Step 3: Jump through the rope.

Tommy Duquette Jump Rope For Beginners Step 3

  • Now try to repeat this two times in a row. Even three.
  • Work your way up until you feel ready to keep the rhythm for a full minute of jumping rope.

Jump Rope Tips For Beginners:

  • Remember to use your wrists to move the rope around you (don’t swing your arms).
  • Keep your elbows tight to your body.
  • Keep your stance narrow--be mindful not to widen the space between your feet as you jump.

What Type of Skipping Rope Do Boxers Use?

Professional fighters tend to use PVC plastic cables or polyvinyl skipping rope. This is good for boxers of any level.

What is even more important than material is length. While some boxers may have personal preferences on length depending on their jump rope style and favorite drills, beginners should use a skipping rope that won’t trip them up or slap on the ground.

Three (3) ways to determine an ideal skipping rope length are:

1. Add 3” to your height, so for example, if you are 5’5”, your skipping rope should be around 5’8” in length.
2. When you step on the middle of the cable and pull the handles upwards, the cable should end no further than your chest.
3. Try doing a few jumps and see if it feels comfortable!

How Long Do Boxers Jump Rope For?

Boxers typically jump rope for about 15 minutes as a warm-up. This is split into 3 rounds of 5 minutes, with a short rest in between. The three rounds will usually include some variations in boxing jump rope footwork like the boxer skip, criss cross arms, or one leg at a time.

Beginners can start with a 3-minute simple jump rope warm-up and increase the time – and difficulty – as they feel comfortable.

Does Jumping Rope Help Footwork?

Yes, jumping rope is an excellent way to improve footwork (Boxing Footwork Drills). As boxers advance their jump rope skills, they learn to be quicker on their feet.

Jumping rope also enhances muscle memory over time. Boxers who have incorporated jumping rope in their footwork drills will be more balanced and agile as they move around their opponent in the ring.

Jumping rope is a favorite exercise for boxers because it has so many benefits. It is both an effective workout and a great training drill. If you want to learn to jump rope like a boxer, you have to start with the basics. Many beginners can be deterred because it is harder than it looks, but practice will take your jump rope game and your boxing skills to the next level.

The Author: Tommy Duquette is the Co-Founder and Head of Content at FightCamp. He is a former US Boxing Team member with 136 fights under his belt and qualified for the 2012 Olympic trials as the #2 seed. He has 18 years of experience training clients in boxing and fitness.