In this short post, we will give you some beginner-friendly battle rope exercises, and a workout to follow along. But, because you are entirely new to this type of training, first we will give you some explanations which will help you master the technique, and exercise injury-free. We would always recommend you consult your doctor before undertaking a new exercise program, and ideally have a fitness instructor present. If your working out in your home gym then you could hire an online PT to check your technique and programming. Let’s begin!
3 Battle Rope Tips For Beginners
#1 Take Care Of The Gear
There are some obvious things to double-check, like making sure battle rope is securely attached to the anchor, as you are about to violently and repeatedly slam it. However, securely doesn’t mean too tight, as it will lead to energy loss, and ropes are about the flow. And of course, you want to make sure the ends of the rope are of the same length. Those are obvious common sense things you would probably check yourself, but it is always worth repeating.
#2 Watch The Slack
However, beginners make one huge mistake that can cause injuries—standing too far from the anchor. While it might seem intuitive that you should tighten the rope, and then do the work, never do that. You should always leave some slack. Having the rope completely tight can severely injure your shoulders.
And there is one more thing to consider—the closer you stand to the anchor point, the harder the battle ropes workout is. More slack means more range of motion, but it also requires you to exert more force to create a wave or slam the rope.
So not only that slack saves your shoulders, but it also makes the workout much better, and there’s absolutely no reason to tighten the rope completely.
#3 Get In Position And Relax
As for your body position, you should hold the taped end of the rope, with palms facing down. And in order to further reduce the injury risk, keep your shoulder blades back and retracted the whole time.
Although it might seem that you should grab the rope as hard as you can, get it tight as much as possible, and slam it as hard as you can. Think of battle ropes as cardio, not weightlifting. Your goal will never be to complete five slams/reps, but rather to continue doing the movement over an extended period. So, yes, grab the rope, and don’t lose the grip, but do it lightly, with relaxed torso, shoulders and arms. Creating and maintaining the flow is what your goal should be, not one-off efforts.
Basic Battle Ropes Exercises Explained
Slams are the easiest to perform because they don’t require much practice. You take the rope and slam it hard to the ground, that’s it.
This is a powerful movement, and it will train your upper body and core explosiveness, hitting lats and abs hard. It is very similar to medicine ball slams in terms that it gives you a lot of return for your effort.
When slamming the rope, stand shoulder-width apart, holding the ends, facing the anchor, with enough slack in the rope. Keep your shoulders back, but don’t get ultra-tight, your body should be relaxed. You should lift the rope to about eye-height with extended arms, and slam it hard to the ground directly below. To prevent lower back overuse, try keeping your chest up when slamming. That’s it, nothing complicated, you will feel right at home after a couple of reps.
You can also perform alternating power slams with one hand at a time, just watch the rope weight, as it is a bit harder to do.
Waves And Alternating Waves
Waves take some practice, as they are not only about power, like slams, but also about coordination and maintaining the rhythm. Because of this, you’ll be able to do waves for more extended periods. Also, the goal of waves if building up fitness, and you should always try to do more than you think you can, going past the exhaustion point, improving with each workout.
To perform waves, you should stand facing the anchor, holding the ends of the rope with your palms facing each other. Shoulders back, knees bent, and of course, enough slack in the rope. You should move the rope up, and then immediately down, and so on, creating “waves” without slamming the ground. The waves should go all the way to the anchor point, continually.
You can also try alternating waves where your left arm moves up when your right arm moves down, and vice versa. This will take some practice, but it is much better for coordination.
The Beginner HIIT Rope Workout
This workout will be as simple as it gets, but it will drain you hard. Here’s what to do:
- 15 seconds power slams
- 30 seconds alternating waves
Repeat 8x with no rest in between. Then rest for two minutes and repeat the whole thing 2-3 x more.
It will take you less than 20 minutes to complete the whole workout, but trust us, it is harder than it looks and perfect for beginners.
That’s it guys, in this article we tried to keep it simple. Once you master slams and waves, you can add star jumps and other a bit more advanced variations such as changing your grip later. In the beginning, it is best to keep it simple but to make sure you start using battling ropes regularly. It is one of the most underrated pieces of equipment, but people are slowly beginning to realize how many benefits it can bring to their training. So don’t hesitate, pack your gym bag, and try your new battle rope routine today!