Ropenastics Workout

David Fisher
Year Released: 2001

Categories: Floor Aerobics/Hi-Lo/Dance



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This video is an absolute must for jump rope anthusiasts who enjoy interval training for their cardio workouts. I am an advanced exerciser who used to be an amateur athlete at school. Jumping rope was one of the main forms of cardio we were encouraged to use to improve our endurance levels and it is incredibly intense.

This video clocks in at just over an hour (a 10min intro; 11 min warm up; intervals – 25mins; cool down – 3 mins; pilates/stretching work – 13m). The set is bright and cheerful and David’s instruction is thorough. There are 2 ladies exercising with him who both show modifications to the advanced workout he provides. I only have an hour to exercise every day so do my own 5 min warm up and then start the tape with the interval workout. The intervals are fun – so many feet combinations etc.., but simple choreography so you can keep up. This will really challenge you and you will get a thorough workout in a short time.

The stretching/pilates at the end of the workout is thorough and also great for core stabilization. I use this tape about once a week and would highly recommend it. As well as it’s incredible fat-burning benefits, jumping rope works your upper body like no other – don’t miss this one !!

Fitnik

12/03/2001

This is a jumproping video that offers great training techniques, some good tips, a 25-minute non-stop interval workout with good music, and a 15-minute Pilates toning & stretch workout. It's a great training video that will challenge the intermediate to advanced ropejumper but still offer good training techniques and slow-jumping speed modifications suited to a determined beginner. The music in the cardio sections runs 132-138BPM, an excellent tempo well below the thrashing speed of the AeroJump series, which wizzes along at 150-170BPM.

David Fisher, also known as the Rope Warrior, leads the tape. He has earned fame making TV appearances and teaching jumproping workshops, as well as introducing the "rump jump", a gymnastic feat that is too scary to describe. He is accompanied by Lara Battalini and Randi Whitman.

I'm an intermediate ropejumper and have been doing it for about a year now and although I can jump continously for about 2 min (until I tangle up!) and overall for 40 min, I haven't mastered much of the tricky footwork. I think there is a small market for jumprope videos and not much selection so it's difficult to use videos to train. This is where this tape shines!

Intro to Ropenastics 12 min
Warm-Up 11 min
Cardio Intervals 25 min
Cool Down 3 min
Pilates/Strength & Flexibility Training 13 min
TOTAL: 65 min

This tape begins with a 4 min talking introduction (how to select and size a rope correctly, etc), and a valuable 8 min demonstration of various ropejumping techniques: here's where I finally mastered turning a side swing into a jump using my crossed side. A trick worth the price of the tape alone if you've ever struggled with that one! Demonstrations of foot moves without the rope, with the rope at walking speeds and instructions for transitions round out this introduction.

Then it's onto a very interesting active warm-up where David uses the rope to warm up muscles - swinging and slow jumps, side steps, stepping through the rope alternating from side-to-side, etc. I think warming up with such steps could actually help one learn rope control. He does an interesting stretch move where he swings the rope forward, traps it under the balls of his feet, then lifts his heels slowly to release it and draw it back over. So in essence, he incorporates a shin and calf stretch in the same slow-motion jumping move. This is a great stretch for the exact muscles you use in ropejumping. The warm-up proceeds with only vocal instruction, no music.

The 25 min cardio section includes David and then Lara doing 4 min of fast jumping followed by half-time jumping for about 30 seconds. The music is Dynamix and MusicFlex tracks that run 132-138BPM - a very reasonable tempo. There's a good mix of instrumental stuff with a motivating beat - including one track I recognized from MIC that is very bouncy.

Throughout David's intervals, Lara demonstrates half-speed jumping (double jumping like grade school kids do) so you can still practice the footwork and get a good workout even if you haven't mastered fast roping (one swing to each jump). Randi demonstrates the entire workout without jumping rope - she does the footwork as in a hi-lo routine while swinging a rope by her side. This gives beginners an alternative where they can still get an intense cardio workout while learning the jump rope steps.

In these intervals, David demonstrates ski hops, double skips & hops, scissors kicks, lateral skips, jogging moves, and a truly difficult move he calls the Karaoke - sort of an alternating lateral skip that reminds me of Mindy's leprechaun move in Action Packed. David is truly talented, you can tell when he teaches a gallop from side to side that he has total control over the rope as he jumps - he's so relaxed and has his own rhythm. David teaches a move while you jump so there's no drop in intensity or heartrate. After David teaches 3 combinations, Lara teaches three. In Lara's intervals, she does athletic moves during slow half-time jumps like squats and lunges that are challenging. I thought her sections would be easier but it's just as hard!

Then a short cool-down led by Lara with side steps, arm swings, and so on. Randi leads a Pilates-based stretching section that includes some nice core and ab work. She does crunches while propped in the v-position - knees balanced above the chest, hands behind head, balanced back on your tailbone - yikes! I love the slow alternating bicycle crunches and David amazes me with his "harder" modifications (legs full-out horizontal), whereas Lara now displays easier modifications for those with less development.

One of the biggest advantages of this tape over previous tapes such as the new Aerojump series is that David appears to jump completely without his rope touching the floor and the small group minimizes the type of noise generated by the ropes when 10-15 people are jumping together. In other words, you can hear the music and the instruction and you can barely hear the ropes!

This tape also offers more variety and is more sustainable than Kathy Smith's Aerobox since the fast jumping intervals are broken up with slower double jump moves. You don't need to be a pro and jump non-stop to get a great workout.

As with all ropejumping routines, you will need a decent workarea. I am able to do this routine with a 10-foot floor area with 8-foot ceilings.

David incorporates some good training techniques throughout and I think this is a tape you can truly grow with and anyone interested in ropejumping could get a good workout. You can do a hi-lo routine watching Randi, jump half-speed with Lara, or wiz along with David. I can only hope to someday jump triple-time like David can or do the gallop, but it will be fun to try.

David is very talented and a good instructor, I hope he and his team continues to produce ropejumping videos, even though the market is limited.

Dawn P

09/17/2001