The fitness industry is seeing a surge of interest in high-intensity interval training (HIIT), a burst-and-recover cycle that can offer a viable alternative to continuous aerobic exercise. Exercise scientists have demonstrated that HIIT can boost the performance of competitive athletes, improve the health of recreational exercisers, and provide the benefits of continuous-endurance training with fewer workouts.
The basic idea of HIIT is to alternate between periods of short, intense anaerobic exercise (like sprinting, kettlebell swings, or battle-roping) less intense resting periods. You repeat this sequence of short, intense exercise and resting for as little as four minutes or as long as thirty minutes. Research has shown that HIIT improves both aerobic and anaerobic conditioning, boosts testosterone levels, and ramps up your metabolism and keeps it ramped up hours after you’ve finished exercising.
In just twenty seconds of intense battle rope exercise, your heart rate will peak and your arms will feel the burn. The intense anaerobic and aerobic conditioning that battle rope exercises provide has made them a staple in the training of professional athletes and mixed martial artists.
The technique is quite simple. You just hold a thick, long rope by the ends and move your arms up and down or in circles as fast as you can, “battling” the ropes.
Here are 15 battle rope workouts to get you ripped!
The Battle Rope
You can get battle ropes with heat shrinked ends or check out the Gorilla Rope with Anodized Aluminum Handles.
The longer and thicker your rope is, the harder it is to battle. Battle ropes typically are 1.5” to 2” in diameter and 30-60 feet in length. A 2” 50 foot Gorilla Rope will give you a challenging workout.
You can put your rope around a pole, tree, or use a kettlebell as an anchor.
Gorilla Rope Workout
Battle rope exercises are an excellent addition to any high-intensity interval training routine. Here is a suggested workout:
15 rounds — each round do one of the battle rope exercises described below. Each round consists of two parts:
- 20 seconds all-out, high-intensity exercise.
- 20 seconds rest.
The whole routine will only take you 10 minutes.
Alternate moving your arms up and down as fast as you can.
Double & Single Arm Waves
Instead of alternating your arms up and down, move them up and down together.
Double Arm Slam
Lift both arms as high as you can and then slam the ropes down to the ground as hard as you can. Go as fast as possible.
Double Arm Slam Jump
Same thing as the double arm slam, except when you lift your arms up as high as you can, you also jump.
Swing your arms together side-to-side and make your rope slither like a snake.
Move your arms in and out like you’re clapping your hands together.
Make big circles with your arms. Your right arm circles clockwise and your left arm circles counter-clockwise.
Turn your body to the right with your feet perpendicular to your anchor. Hold the battle rope ends together in your hands as if you were gripping a baseball bat — right hand on top of the left. Raise your arms up and down as fast as you can. Midway through the round, switch your stance and face the left, and reverse your grip so that your left hand is on top of your right hand. Continue lifting your arms up and down as fast as you can.
Grappler Hip-to-Hip Toss
Mimic the movement a grappler makes when they toss someone over their hip. Grab the rope so the ends are sticking out from between your thumb and index fingers and hold the ends down by your right hip. Pivot your torso to the left. During the pivot, flip the ropes over your hip as if you were throwing a grappling opponent to the ground. Pivot back and forth like this until time is up.
Use a series of Mike Tyson moves with alternating uppercuts while holding the ropes.
Figure Eight Circles
Make a figure eight shape in the air while holding the ropes. Feel free to reverse direction in the middle of your round.
Just hold the ropes by the end and perform some old-school jumping jacks.
Get Your Battle Rope!
If you have any favorite battle rope workouts, share them in the comments!