Why Boxers Skip

"There’s not a muscle group that you use in the ring that jumping rope doesn’t work; that’s why it’s such an important part of the fighter’s workout," Joe Frazier.

Skipping has been used as a key aspect of training for fighters throughout the history of boxing.

All-time greats such as Jack Dempsey, Sugar Ray Robinson and Muhammad Ali utilised the skipping rope decades ago to help improve their skills in the ring.

While more modern day champions such as Roberto Duran, Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Canelo Alvarez continued to master the art of jumping rope for the overall boxing benefits too.

But why do boxers skip? BOXRAW outline the key reasons and main advantages for fighters in training.

Increases Endurance

Skipping rope in training uses every part of your body that’s needed for a fight, making it a hugely beneficial workout when preparing to step into the ring.

It’s one of the old school methods of training, being a high-intensity exercise that requires a boxer to be constantly switched on mentally and physically.

Fighters often use skipping as a way of warming up for a training session or sparring but adding in intervals is another great way to enhance endurance.

Finishing training off with a skipping rope workout will also prepare a fighter for when fatigue eventually sets in during a hard fight in the late rounds.

Builds Mental Toughness

Jump rope workout benefits include building mental toughness.

Beyond just the great physical benefits of skipping rope regularly in training, boxers also build up their mental strength and toughness.

This is crucial ahead of a fight, being able to dig deep and keep the rope turning in sync with the body as fatigue kicks in.

In these moments, a boxer develops their fighting mentality, as they prepare for a similar situation in the ring when they’re required to push beyond their limits and refuse to give in.

Improves Balance and Footwork

Sugar Ray Robinson is part of jump rope history in boxing (Image: AP).

Having a strong foundation and centre of gravity is crucial in boxing, with fighters needing to have the correct footwork in place to throw and avoid punches.

The repetitive motions of skipping, while having to stay very light on the feet, helps to improve the legs for moving around the ring on fight night.

This will boost a fighter’s ability to stay out of trouble and condition them to be able to withstand going the distance, even when things get tough in there.

Refines Rhythm, Timing and Coordination

Using the Sokudo Speed Rope in training will help to activate the fast-twitch muscles that are extremely important in a fight scenario.

Both upper and lower body parts are strengthened and constantly pushed during a jump rope workout.

The wrists, arms and shoulders are conditioned, therefore translating to improved punching, along with the legs and feet too. This showcases the skipping rope benefits for all boxers.

Boosts Speed and Power

The boxing skipping rope was used by Floyd Mayweather Jr. throughout his career (Image: Getty).

The faster a boxer can continuously skip rope in training and keep their balance, the more potential they have to increase speed in the ring and punching power.

Building up the leg muscles through skipping is crucial in order to be able to battle deep into the later rounds of a hard fight, with this also having a key impact on improving foot speed around the ring and shot power.

Fighters that are off balance won’t have the same punching power as those who possess strong fundamentals with their footwork and jump rope workouts can help maintain balance when it comes to throwing those blows.

Sokudo Speed Rope

Elevate your training with the Sokudo Speed Rope, engineered for optimal hand, wrist and finger positioning.


Header image: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images