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There’s more to this training tool than one-directional waves writes Dan Henderson.

The battling rope is an incredibly effective fitness training tool. However, it is often underutilised and misused. Its full capability is not realised as, all too often, trainers and clients only use them for doing waves in one direction, with their shoulders doing the majority of the work.

This video showcases four great exercises that challenge the full body and use multiple planes.

The exercises are:

1. Bullwhips

The bullwhip is a brilliant rotary exercise in which the power is derived from the hips. It is important to pivot from one foot to the other and create an inverted ‘U’ with the ropes. Use a supinated grip and aim to have the ropes go from one side of the hip to the other.

2. Transverse waves

Transverse waves are a great variation from the traditional double waves. You need to set your torso up with a 45 degree angle in relation to the anchor point. You can change sides with a plyometric jump or keep the torso grounded. Aim to keep the waves fluid and controlled.

3. Jumping jacks

Jumping jacks accelerate the heart rate and challenge the body in the frontal plane. The key here is timing the upper and lower body together and bringing the ropes as high as possible.

4. Frontal plane waves

Frontal plane waves are very challenging and are more advanced than the previous three exercises outlined above. The torso needs to be completely side-on in relation to the anchor point, and the movement is a frequent up and down motion with the arms.

So, the next time you include rope training in a session, be sure to make things more interesting for clients by shaking things up with a range of moves that will train the full body rather than just the shoulders and upper body.

Dan Henderson, BA (Sport & Exercise Management) is the co-owner of The Australian Institute of Kettlebells (AIK). AIK educate trainers and coaches worldwide with accredited courses in kettlebells, battling ropes, powerbags, mobility and barbells.

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