We are searching data for your request:
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.
Jumping rope packs a big calorie punch, but it might not be for everyone.
Polka Dot Images/Polka Dot/Getty Images
When your time to exercise is limited, you want to choose exercises that you enjoy but also that provide you a beneficial workout in the shortest amount of time. If you have your sights set on either jumping rope or using a stair climber, consider a few key points to decide which one is right for you.
Count the Calories
Climbing stairs and jumping rope are primarily cardiovascular exercises, meaning they get your heart and lungs working hard and help you burn the calories that can lead to weight loss. If your main concern is losing weight, you'll want to know how many calories each exercise can burn. The actual number will depend on your level of intensity, but on average, a 155-pound person can burn about 223 calories using a stair step machine for 30 minutes and about 372 calories jumping rope for the same amount of time. By that comparison, jumping rope burns more calories, but since it's such an intense exercise, you might not be able to do it for more than 30 minutes at a time when you first start exercising.
ID The Muscles You'll Use
Both exercises force you to move your muscles against gravity and involve some type of lifting or pulling on the muscles - which means they're also going to help you build muscle tissue. If you're concerned about toning your body, this might be the most important thing for you. When you jump rope, you use nearly every muscle in your body in either the jumping up or jumping down phase. To jump with control requires most of the muscles of your upper and lower body, while the jumping up phase requires most of your leg and core strength. Your arms get into the action as they hold the rope and move it up and down. The stair climber, meanwhile, is primarily a lower-body exercise, targeting the glutes, hamstrings and quadriceps, as well as the core muscles of the abdomen and back.
Know the Logistics
Choosing between the two exercises may also be a matter of logistics. If you're often on the run, the jump rope offers you a way to work out no matter where you are. As mentioned previously, however, with the level of intensity, you might not be able to sustain a jump rope session as long as you'd like. If you're the type who needs a lot of feedback about your performance, you might prefer a stair climber machine, since the machines often allow you to track your estimated calorie burn, heart rate and other markers. Another benefit to stair climbers is that they're a more low-impact activity than jumping rope - something to consider if you suffer from joint pain. The downside of the stair climber is that it's either going to cost you the price of a gym membership or the amount it takes to buy the machine, which could be several thousand dollars.
Choose Both If You Want
When it comes down to it, you don't have to decide between one exercise or the other. When you do the same type of exercise time after time, your muscles become adapted to that workload. Eventually, you have to increase your intensity by adding more time, speed or resistance to continue getting similar cardio and muscular benefits. That's when variety comes into play. Keep your muscles guessing and challenge them in different ways by opting to do the stair climber for a while and then switching to the jump rope for a period of time - or simply switch between the two whenever you feel like it. That will also help you cut down on boredom, which causes many people to discontinue exercise.