Battle ropes are fast becoming the most popular way to spice up any workout routine. Originally created and developed by John Brookfield (the system, not the ropes!) they have often been used by athletes from MMA to American Football. However, as more gym goers and PT's look for dynamic exercises that put their whole body to the test - Battle ropes are now becoming mainstream.
We've detailed some of the key benefits and our favourite exercises below to help you on your way to mastering the ultimate high intensity cardio and lean mass exercise.
Benefits of Battle Ropes Exercises
Not only are Battle Ropes a great way to work your upper body, but they also work your abs, back, glutes and legs. Now if thats not enough to encourage you to pick up the ropes in your gym, we've got some further benefits to get you in the mood for making waves.
Muscle Imbalances - Battle ropes work each arm independently, therefore, they're great for working on any imbalances. Unlike a barbell that requires your muscles to work together in a relatively static movement, the battle ropes push you to work individually leaving muscle weaknesses with no place to hide.
Flexibility - By forcing you to use a huge range of movement, with up-down, side to side and circular motions, battle ropes are great for your flexibility and boosting your overall athleticism, you can even add in the bonus reduced risk of injury thanks to all of that movement.
Core Stability - Keeping your balance whilst whipping, smashing and making waves with heavy duty ropes takes significant strength from your stabilising muscles. It doesn't take an expert to appreciate the positive effect this has on your core stability and strength.
Cardio - Battle ropes can be used as a high intensity interval training tool. This is a great way to improve your cardiovascular performance and increase your VO2 Max (the maximum amount of oxygen you can take in while exercising)
Avoid Boredom - We couldn't give you advice on Battle Ropes without talking about how much fun they are. Smashing and waving ropes around will never get old in our eyes and we're sure you'll love it as much as we do when you get started!
Battle Rope Exercises
Although there are so many variations to the battle rope workout, we've picked 3 exercises to get you on the right path to becoming a Battle ropes master.
A great place to start is with the basics and with this exercise, the clue is in the name. Make some waves!
The Tsunami - Start by challenging yourself to generate enough power to get a wave down the rope to the anchor point.
Double Waves - Next, with feet shoulder-width apart you should stand and face the anchor. Now, grab one end of the rope in each hand so that your palms are facing each other. Bend your knees slightly, brace your core, and move both arms up and down rapidly, creating waves in the rope. Simple.
Alternating Waves - Using the same stance as the double wave, this time you will raise one arm to shoulder level and then quickly lower back to the start, then as you lower this arm raise your other arm up to shoulder level in an alternating fashion. Continue alternating as rapidly as possible without losing your form.
Feel free to spice it up by slamming the ropes to the ground or using a whipping motion too in order to build your power and engage that core.
Feel the Resistance
You can change up the intesnity and strength required in your battle rope exercises by moving closer or further away from the anchor point.
Moving away decreases the intensity for when you need a rest. Moving closer increases that intensity for when you need that extra challenge - by doing this you adjust the slackness of the rope and therefore keep your muscles guessing. We recommend two minutes closer followed by one minute further away as active recovery - just as you would in high intensity interval training.
Although many people like to train alone, sometimes you can't beat a little competition for improving your performance. There are plenty of options available to train as a squad or a duo when using battle ropes. Not only can you compete against the rope but also the strength and the energy of your partner.
A good place to start here is with the plank pull. Both you and your partner grab an end of the rope each, get yourself in the plank position and pull at the rope providing resistance for your partner who then pulls back. See who lasts the longest...
Battle ropes put you through your paces but are a great way to build lean mass. We recommend our Pre Workout to get you performing at your best, followed by our Whey Concentrate Blend to make the most of all that extra effort. However, if you're hitting the battle ropes for those lean gains then take it that step further with our Diet Whey, the ultimate lean protein blend.
The Supreme Nutrition Team