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Hop Into Fitness With The Best Jump Ropes

These speed and weighted jump ropes will help boost your cardio, improve coordination, and burn a ton of calories.

best jump ropes
Staff, Courtesy of Proud Panda

If you’ve ever watched the Rocky movies, you’ve seen Syl Stallone jump rope his way through a slew of workout montages. That’s because skipping rope is one of the most tried-and-tested methods for boxers, athletes, and fitness enthusiasts in general seeking to boost their performance and hone their physique.

According to StrongFit and Pilates coach Sara Solomon (whose jump rope video series helped me get the most out of my skipping routine), jumping rope is “a portable, inexpensive, and fun way to quickly burn a ton of calories and improve your athleticism. If you are short on time and don’t want to go to a gym, then jump rope is ideal for you because you only need a small space and about 10 minutes. Not only does jump rope enhance your dynamic balance, speed, endurance, agility, coordination, and concentration, but it also improves your cardio-respiratory efficiency and even minimizes your risk of developing osteoporosis by increasing bone density.”

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Although it might seem like jump ropes are more or less the same, the fact is that they vary when it comes to quality, purpose, and whether they’ll suit your personal fitness goals. With this in mind, we recommend the best jump ropes for a range of budgets and uses, along with what you need to know to find the right one.

The Expert: I’ve spent over a decade writing about all things related to fitness, with a particular emphasis on fitness techniques and tools. Accordingly, I’m constantly trying out fitness gear of all sorts, and I’ve come to know the difference between what works and what’s merely hype. Several years ago, jumping rope became an integral inclusion in my own workout routine, and I hopped my way from stumbling through a few minutes of start-stops, to being able to skip uninterrupted for up to half an hour. My health and fitness writing has appeared in a slew of top publications, including Men’s Health, the Los Angeles Times, Thrillist, Healthline, the Manual, and more.

What to Look for in a Jump Rope

Adjustability: “I recommend a rope that allows both easy cord replacement and the ability to adjust the length to suit your height,” Solomon says. That means choosing a jump rope where the cord isn’t fixed at the handles. The handles of a properly sized jump rope will nestle into your armpits when standing with your feet together on its center. Aim for a rope that is between three and four feet longer than you are tall, then adjust from there.

Handle Attachments: “I also recommend a rope with swivel bearing technology to ensure a smooth turning motion without friction or drag,” Solomon says. “This allows for free rotation with no rope tangle.”

Rope Material: Jump ropes are available in a variety of materials, such as fibrous ropes, PVC cords, and metal cables. Different materials deliver differing user experiences and suit different workout intentions. “I suggest beginners start with PVC cord before tackling weighted or cable cords,” Solomon advises. Keep in mind thinner ropes, including metal cables, can wear faster than thicker options.

Speed vs. Weighted Ropes: Speed ropes tend to be made of lighter materials and are intended for fast-paced workouts. Weighted ropes can be much heavier. “I recommend speed ropes (i.e. steel cables) if you have speed goals or you are focusing on mastering double, triple, and even quadruple unders,” Solomon says. “For a tougher challenge, you can use a weighted jump rope. This will help you increase your upper body and core strength, and it will also burn more calories than a speed rope. This can be a great cross-training tool for athletes who rely heavily on upper body strength.”

How We Evaluated

To recommend the best jump ropes, I relied on my personal experience, along with suggestions from Sara Solomon, reviews from other industry experts, and actual customer reviews from Amazon and other retailers. The models below span a range of budgets, preferences, and fitness goals.

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Best Overall
Buddy Lee Aero Speed Jump Rope
Buddy Lee Jump Ropes

  • Soft, comfortable handles
  • Smooth rotation
  • Highly durable

  • Rope might be too light for some users

Key Specs

  • Rope Material: PVC
  • Length: Adjustable up to 9 ft. 3 in.
  • Handle Attachment: Swivel bearings

Developed by U.S. Olympic wrestler Buddy Lee, this jump rope has received the stamp of approval from a bunch of organizations and training programs, like the UFC, CrossFit, TRX, and more. Durable, adjustable, and boasting silky-smooth motion, it delivers a flawless skipping experience.

Best Speed Rope
Epitomie Fitness Sonic Boom M2 High Speed Jump Rope
Epitomie Fitness

  • Secure, tool-free locking mechanism
  • Lightweight, rapid motion
  • Includes free video training course
  • Great satisfaction guaranteed policy

  • Cable is so light that it has a tendency to tangle

Key Specs

  • Rope Material: Polymer-coated alloy steel
  • Length: Adjustable up to 10 ft.
  • Handle Attachment: Ball bearings

If you’re looking for pure speed, check out the Sonic Boom M2 from Epitome Fitness. With its lightweight, thin steel cable attached via ball bearing, it delivers rapid, smooth motion. The unique cable attachment locking mechanism allows you to adjust the length without using screws, which tend to fall out mid-workout.

Best Light Weighted Rope
Proud Panda 1-Pound Professional Skipping Rope
Proud Panda

  • Durable construction
  • Adjustable length
  • Comfortable handles

  • Fixed rather than rotating rope attachment points can impede motion

Key Specs

  • Rope Material: Silicone
  • Length: Adjustable up to 9 ft. 10.8 in.
  • Handle Attachment: Fixed

If you’re interested in trying out a weighted jump rope, this 1-pound rope from Proud Panda is a great introduction. It’s heavy enough to provide greater activation to the shoulders, arms, and upper body but light enough for beginners or people with smaller builds. The handles are also soft and pleasant to the touch, and both the handles and rope offer durable build quality.

Best Midweight Rope
Proud Panda 3-Pound Heavy Jump Rope
Proud Panda

  • Burns more calories
  • Builds upper body strength
  • Super durable

  • One-piece construction with fixed handles can take some getting used to

Key Specs

  • Rope Material: Polyester
  • Length: Fixed at 9 ft. 10.8 in.
  • Handle Attachment: Fixed

Once you’re ready to step up the weight—or if you’re starting out with weighted jump ropes and have a bigger build—this 3-pound rope from Proud Panda is a solid choice. And I do mean solid, as it’s one solid piece of actual rope. It’s also super durable and will last forever.

Best Heavy Weighted Rope
Dreetino 5-Pound Heavy-Duty Jump Rope

  • Maximum calorie burn
  • Maximum muscle activation
  • Super durable

  • Too heavy for inexperienced users
  • One-piece construction with fixed handles can take some getting used to

Key Specs

  • Rope Material: Polyester
  • Length: Fixed at 10 ft.
  • Handle Attachment: Fixed

Looking for a weighted rope that delivers a true muscle-sculpting experience? You’ve found it. Weighing in at 5 pounds, this jump rope is downright difficult to use—and that’s the point. Few fitness methods combine cardio with full-body muscle training as effectively as this tool. And its ultra-burly build will last forever.

Best Smart Rope
Keenstone Smart Jump Rope
Now 22% off

  • Accurate data collection
  • Intuitive user experience

  • Some users have reported issues with durability

Key Specs

  • Rope Material: PVC-coated steel
  • Length: Adjustable up to 9 ft. 10.2 in.
  • Handle Attachment: Ball bearing

These days, many fitness enthusiasts are all about that data, and this smart rope from Keenstone delivers. Link it to your phone via Bluetooth to track your calories burned, number of jumps, time elapsed, speed, and fitness progress. It also features three training modes: free skip, countdown timer, and countdown number.

Best Budget
Cordforce Jump Rope

  • Affordable
  • Ball-bearing attachments
  • Adjustable

  • Some users report durability issues

Key Specs

  • Rope Material: PVC-coated alloy steel
  • Length: Adjustable up to 9 ft. 2 in.
  • Handle Attachment: Ball bearings

If you’re looking to jump on a budget, this rope from Cordforce delivers a solid experience at a lower cost. Its foam handles are comfortable to hold, and its PVC-coated steel cable delivers a rapid rotation rate. It also boasts ball-bearing rather than fixed handle attachments, which is rare for cheaper jump ropes.

Best Ropeless
Aplugtek Ropeless Skipping Rope

  • Space-efficient
  • Smooth rotation
  • Good training tool if you’re just getting started

  • Some users have trouble coordinating the rotation of both handles

Key Specs

  • Rope Material: PVC and EVA
  • Length: N/A
  • Handle Attachment: Ball bearing

If you’re jumping rope in a cramped space or you find yourself tripping over the rope constantly, try this ropeless option from Aplugtek. Its half-pound weighted balls simulate the jump rope experience, requiring less space and helping to boost your agility until you’re ready for an actual rope.

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