Have you seen these curled up in the corner of your gym, all lonely and unused? Or perhaps the grunt from fellow gym goers has been enough to deter you from giving them a go? Well there’s no need to be shy here. It’s time to grab hold of these tightly (two hands, thanks) and get ready to make waves with your next routine.
“Battle ropes are excellent tools to improve cardiovascular fitness, aid weight loss and enhance muscle endurance. Using them side by side with a partner is a great way to add some competitive spark to your workout,” says Adrian Holdsworth, personal trainer and national product manager at Fitness First.
We also think they’re a great way to mix up an overdone and dull workout. Read on to incorporate this must-use equipment in your next gym session.
Training tip number 1
Start off slow. “Beginners using battle ropes at full intensity will be exhausted very quickly. So try starting with lighter ropes before progressing to larger options or use one side of the rope with a partner on the other side,” says Adrian.
Training tip number 2
Mix up your techniques and grips. “This will add variety to your routine and help emphasise the different muscle groups of the body,” says Adrian. “As you begin to fatigue, technique can be compromised so keep focusing on good quality movements and full range.”
Training tip number 3
10 minutes is all you need. You might think there’s no way you could use these hefty-ropes for very long, but as the research goes, all you need is 10 minutes of whipping back-and-forth action for it to be considered a vigorous workout. Not to mention, you’ll be burning about 11 calories per minute — bingo!
Exercises to try
“There is a lot of variety when you get creative with the ropes,” says Adrian. “Try combining exercises like lunges or shuffles while you use the ropes and alternating battle rope techniques with other exercises in supersets.”
Adrian suggests trying the double arm wave, which is a bit of a classic when it comes to battle ropes.
Start by grasping the ends at arm’s length in front of you at about hip height, with your hands shoulder-width apart. Bend knees slightly, tighten your core and then begin to move both arms up and down fast, allowing you to create fast, repetitive movements and waves in the ropes.
For this one, hold the end of the ropes and position your feet a bit wider than shoulder-width apart, and keep the ropes by your sides. Lower yourself into a deep squat, and swing your arms together side-to-side and make your ropes slither on the floor like a snake.
You’ll definitely feel the burn with this one. Grab the end of the ropes and move your arms in and out like you’re clapping your hands together — clap, clap!