I looked up this thread which says that jumping rope is good for overall bodily health:
What is a jump rope good for?

Also, I have seen and heard about the benefits of jogging/running.

I am NOT fat. I intend to do exercise for:
1. Mental alertness.
2. Faster reaction time to the surroundings.
3. Combating depression.

Which is more suitable, jogging/running OR rope skipping? Why?

  • 1
    You may want to check out some jump rope videos from Shana Brady. The rope skipping seems to require more concentration than running and may also improve your reactions. You can always alternate or cross train. Nov 8, 2011 at 7:38
  • @BackInShapeBuddy Thanks, what's the meaning of "alternate" and "cross train"? Nov 8, 2011 at 7:40
  • It just means that you don't have to choose one or the other, but you can run on one day and skip rope on another. Cross training allows you to use your muscles and joints in different ways as you do different exercises. This helps to prevent overuse injuries that might occur if you do the same exercise everyday. Nov 8, 2011 at 7:49
  • @BackInShapeBuddy That is helpful. :) How about putting that as a detailed answer with a textual link rather than a video? I may select that answer then (if someone else doesn't write a better one). :) Nov 8, 2011 at 7:54

3 Answers 3


Since your exercise goals are to improve mental alertness, reaction time and fight depression, skipping rope may have some advantages over jogging and running, because navigating the rope gives you added mental focus, body awareness and coordination.

As mentioned in my comment, you do not need to choose one over the other. To the contrary alternating one day of running with one day of skipping rope will give you the advantages of cross training. Or you could combine a workout of jogging, with intervals of skipping rope. (Generally, you can’t continuously skip rope as long as you would be able to jog or run because it can be more intense as an exercise.)

One of the most important exercise criteria for depression is that it is something you and your body enjoys doing regularly. Cross training keeps you from getting bored with your exercise program and is more stimulating mentally. It also reduces the chance of overuse injuries.

I have included video links to a beginning jump roping video and a more advanced one as you progress, as well as a video for leg strengthening to prevent injuries.

So my suggestion is to try both jogging and skipping rope. Either one and/or both can help you with your goals. See what you like about each and how your body and mind respond. Trying out each exercise will give you your best answer.

  • 1
    You are welcome. Keep us posted on how it goes! Nov 9, 2011 at 4:34
  • Alright, I will. :D Actually I am worried about injuries. Doc here says that running and rope skipping can cause knee injuries. I am 28 years old slim girl. Nov 9, 2011 at 4:39
  • 1
    Actually, anything and everything can cause injuries if you don't do it correctly. Don't focus on injuries. The last video gives some exercises to help prevent injuries and here are common errors to avoid. Basically, you can try an exercise and see if you like it and how your body feels. If it seems like something that is right for you for the long term, then you can get some further instruction/evaluation on your form, alignment and any other exercises you can do to improve the quality of your running or rope jumping. Good luck. Nov 9, 2011 at 4:58
  • Thanks again, also, I would like to know that on what basis do you trust the quality of the random youtube videos? No offense intended. Nov 9, 2011 at 5:06
  • 1
    No offense taken. You are very correct not to blindly trust random info, esp. on youtube where anyone can post a video. In my case, I trust my knowledge and choose specific videos that demonstrate info that I want to share. For some answers, I have to weed thru a lot of poor videos with misleading or simply wrong information. I also try to avoid videos that are just trying to get you back to their site to sell something. For your question, I chose Shana's videos because they are clear, present quality information on form, break down a skill into the steps, and they are not too long :) Nov 9, 2011 at 5:51

If you're interested in reactive training, neither is particularly appropriate--do specific agility drills. There are a ton of them on the net, or get something like Functional Training for Sports or Training for Speed, Agility, and Quickness.

IMO HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training is better overall for jacking up the metabolism, although longer-distance running is more meditative. Both are valuable for dealing with depression issues (something I'm far too familiar with :(

  • Thanks, I understand, but still I would like to know which one is better out of these two? Nov 8, 2011 at 4:01
  • Depends. If the running is HIIT, or fartleks, etc. then I'd say running. Especially if it's out doors, in a natural setting--multiple benefits. If you have to be inside, then I think jumping rope. I think things like burpees and the like are better yet, though, and whole-body. Nov 8, 2011 at 4:06
  • I don't run vigorously, I just jog mildly, I counted my steps they are 300. And it is going to be outdoors (jogging and skipping both). Nov 8, 2011 at 4:10

I would say that jumping rope is definitely the best way to go, as if done right it is actually a lower impact exercise. Mainly to correctly jump rope, jump using the ball of your foot and keep your upper arms close to your body while the lower arms are directed out from your body (though not at 90 degrees), and keep the main movement in your wrists.

Running or jogging puts a large amount of stress and negative impact (over long periods of time) on joints in comparison to jumping rope, this is due to the momentum involved in running (which magnifies the weight of the person) and the fact that the entirety of this force is taken on by one leg, instead of both (as in jumping rope).

Also, jumping rope increases endurance, rhythm, reaction speed, co-ordination and balance more effectively than jogging or running. The endurance is because jumping rope accesses and uses your core muscle groups (as well as others) at a much quicker and intense rate than running or jogging can. The rhythm is due to the the repetition of the exercise, this is heavily connected with reaction time. Reaction time is increased in reaction to the rhythm, the brain learns to quickly calculate the speed of the rotation, which in turn leads to anticipating the next jump, this also helps to increase brain activity in relation to memory. Co-ordination is increased due to the combination of jumping and moving of the arms, this also helps to tone the upper body much more successfully than jogging or running, as both sides of the brain are used while jumping rope it increases spacial awareness (which has a large impact on reaction time, balace and co-ordination) and body awareness (also has a large impact on reaction time, balance and co-ordination). Balance is increased as noted in the previous sentence, however it is also due to the strengthening of the core muscles.

Also jumping rope definitely combats depression, as any type of physical exercise has a positive repercussion against depression. Depression can be caused by many things, high up on the list however are: lack of physical fitness (which inhibits self-confidence, this can be combatted through any physical exercise, jumping rope is a very portable example), lack of vitamin D (which is from a lack of sunlight, this can be combatted (via jumping rope) by going outside to exercise), and lack of self-confidence (which can be improved through improving your image, however to be confident you have to be happy with yourself, a way to do this is to act as though you are watching yourself from the outside, another way is to react to situations in a way that you believe to be admirable and moral, surround yourself with quality (not necessarily quantity) people (these people should be supportive, friendly, intelligent enough to provide mental stimulus but perhaps not so intelligent to make you feel overly stupid, and honest with you. Avoid negative, abusive, aggressive, or depressing company).

I hope this helped out! also here is a site that shows 23 different types of jumping rope: http://www.bloomtofit.com/23-skipping-rope-exercises-extended-video

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