Let us jump right into this first extremely beneficial badminton conditioning exercise – jump rope! Jump rope is a very simple and very well known exercise – just about everyone has seen or heard of it. All you need to do is jump and swing! I believe that jump rope is a MUST-DO for any badminton player. Let’s get into why:
1. Targets Muscle Groups Most Widely Used On The Court
Jump rope trains your wrist, forearm, tricep, and even shoulder when you use your arms to swing circles around you. These upper body muscles will help you with the strength and speed of each of your shots. On each jump, we are also training our glutes, quadriceps, and calves. Training these lower body muscles will help you move faster on the court, be more explosive with your movement, and be able to reach the shuttlecock without getting too exhausted. It’s good to incorporate muscle building into your badminton conditioning where possible. Badminton training using this type of approach will help to aid all aspects of your game.
2. Badminton Conditioning Should Train Your Joints
Badminton is an extremely agile and quick sport. You shuffle around the court to reach each birdie, jump high off the ground to hit strong smashes, and hop back to the middle of the court to get ready for the opponent’s returns. Jumping rope helps train your ankle and feet to absorb the impact of your body jumping and landing, over and over.
3. Improves your coordination
Jump rope trains your hand-eye coordination, as you time each jump with the movement of your arms – ensuring that your legs do not get tangled up with the rope. At the same time, you also learn to stay on your toes rather than on your heels. This is important as it will keep you quicker on the court. Just the act of focusing on the rope while making your jumps can seem to improve your badminton conditioning.
4. Provides an intense cardio workout
Setting either a target count that you want to reach, or a duration you want to jump for will train yourself to stay consistent and in the exercise zone. The longer you jump without break, the more benefits you will get. This will help train your lungs, your heart, and help you to control your breathing on the court. Jump rope really is just such a good activity to add to your various badminton exercises.
5. Has an extremely natural progression
Jump rope is extremely easy to track your progress – you can either count how many jumps you can do in a row without mistake, or time yourself. Either way, you will be able to know what level you are at and set reasonable targets to beat at each jump rope training session. This is different than performing drills for badminton where there are some more added complexities.
When learning to jump rope, you should start by practicing single jumps first. This means that for each jump, the rope will go underneath your legs one time. Aim to improve the total number of single jumps you can do in a row, until you feel that single jumps are extremely comfortable and too easy.
Next, we want to practice “double-jumps” or “double-unders”. Like its name says, this means that for each jump, the rope will go underneath your legs TWO times. This is the stage of the progression which most badminton players train at. The steps to reach your first double jump may take a while, but with practice, you will be able to do one. Again, after learning to do one double jump, continue with the progression and aim for a higher volume of jumps per set. As you can imagine, double jumps would provide double the amount of benefit as single jumps – you will need to jump higher, and swing much faster in roughly the same amount of time it takes to do a single jump. Reaching this level will really start to advance your badminton conditioning quite a lot. That being said just getting here will be a hard-fought struggle.
When I first started learning how to do double jumps, it took me a long time before I could do even one. I would practice one hour every day after badminton practice (5 days a week!) just trying my best to improve. Over the period of several weeks, I was finally able to do 10 in a row. Shortly after, I was able to do 50, 75, 100, 200, and even 300 in a row, just by following the natural progression.
Currently, I do a jump rope focused conditioning session at minimum once a week. I generally aim for 6-10 sets of 2 minutes (roughly 200 double-jumps). As I want to train my muscle fatigue and cardio more, I generally do agility exercises (I will cover in another post) in between each set of jump rope just to keep my rest time as low as possible.
Badminton professionals all over the world also do jump rope. Based from anecdotes from my Indonesian coaches, their teammates can do double jumps for up to 18 minutes non stop without mistake – that’s 900 double jumps in a row! As you can see, jump rope has a lot of positive benefits for badminton players and continues to be used as an important training method around the world.
You can check out a short video of me doing double-unders below. If you are interested in any more conditioning clips or videos, please check out the full length videos on my YouTube channel! See you guys in the next post!