Size Matters

Challenge workoutsQuestion: Shawna you had a sizing chart for getting the right length of jump rope, where would I find that again? Sue

Answer: Your jump rope success depends on your jump rope so getting the right size is really important.

If your rope is too short, you’ll have to jump too high and you won’t get a good rhythm. If it’s too long, you’ll trip and again you wont’ get a good rhythm. When you stand on the middle of the rope, the rope should come to your armpits.

Here’s a good guide for you:

Someone less than 4 feet 10 inches tall uses a 7-foot jump rope. If you are over that height, but under 5 feet 3 inches, use an 8-foot rope. A 9-foot rope fits someone 5 feet 4 inches tall to 5 feet 10 inches tall. If you are between 5 feet 11 inches and 6 feet 6 inches, a 10-foot rope should work. You will need an 11-foot rope if you are taller than 6 feet 6 inches.

Grab Challenge Jump Rope here if you aren’t already a jumpin’ fool 😉

Question: Thank you for the daily videos.  I am most interested in your pull-up videos as I am 74 and still trying to do my first “real” pull-up. (am 5′ 10″ @ 200#) Not on your Current Topic, but one side question please.  Straight Arm hangs for time.  My arms always feel that they are being pulled out of my body. I try to do a lot of Lat Bar pull-downs, and holds for time.  Question is do you see any value in using the Lat Bar pull-downs as an aid to training for the pull-up?  I do not recall you commenting on the Lat pull-down (either helpful or not helpful).
P.S. You said to submit a Comment to let you know we are still out there.  This is my 1st reply but I’ve been receiving your videos for about 1 year. Gary

Answer: Yay! Gary is out there and commenting! Thank you! Good for you for training hard and working on your pull ups. I LOVE that age is no excuse for hard training. The benefit for straight arm hangs is just to strengthen your grip. It’s key to force the shoulders down and back (don’t let them ride up to the ears) when doing a hang. Once you can hang for 30 seconds plus, move onto scap retraction and working on the pullup.

The lat pull down has it’s benefits. Once you’ve exhausted yourself on regular or assisted pull ups (band pull ups, jump pull ups), you can finish up with the lat pull down. Many folks think that if they can do their body weight on the lat pull down that they’ll be able to do a pull down though and this isn’t the case. The body position/mechanics are different. Go ahead and use the lat pull down as a supplementary exercise, but prioritize pull ups or any assisted pull up with your body weight first. Thanks for reading and finally commenting! Keep me posted ok?

If you want help with your pull ups, go here.


Question: With your jump rope program, should I do one of the workouts every other day?  I am assuming that I should skip a day in between them.  You mention 4 workouts a week.  How do you do that if you skip every other day?

I started with workout 1.  I skipped a day and then did workout 2.  I will probably just continue this way through the workouts.  Would it be better to just stick with workout 1 for maybe a week (or 3 times) before switching to workout 2? Just wondering what you think is the best approach. Thanks, Tom

Answer: Tom, Thanks for your question regarding the jump rope program.The great thing about this program is that you can actually do a workout every day of the week if you are so inclined. Because the workouts are pretty much bodyweight, you can likely tolerate 6-7 workouts/week if you have the energy and time.

Having said this, some people need more recovery time, in which case, listen to your body. I mentioned that the program is designed to be used 4 times/week because I know that not everyone is a nut like me. You’ll get results with exercising 4 times/week, your results will come faster with 5-6 workouts/week as long as you aren’t sore and you feel rested enough to do the work.

As for what workouts to do, the key is to change things up and add variety. Your body needs a new and different challenge to respond and many people get bored and like a new workout, but if you’d like to ‘master’ a workout by trying it a few times, that’s fine. Your body won’t adapt and slow down fitness results if you repeat a workout a few times. If your intensity is lower with a new workout and repeating it allows you to increase the intensity, then go for it. Repeat the workout 2-3 times before moving on. Then come back to the workout after you’ve completed the rest of the workouts. Does that answer your questions? Let me know if you need anything, keep me posted,


Question: I am just back from a month of holiday during which time I used your Jump Rope program. I have a sore deltoid and shoulder which I started treating before I left, and will have to continue treating now that I am home ’cause it still hurts. My question is this: the PT says “don’t go to the gym” until the pain is completely gone.” But if I don’t go to the gym, I will probably go crazy (I think you can understand me here!). With your jump rope program, I was just leaving out the upper body work, but in the gym I’m not sure what I can do. Especially since I usually work on your pushup or pullups programs. Is it okay to just do lower body work for a couple of weeks, continuously? Any advice on how to work around using my right arm would be appreciated. Thanks for listening 🙂  Sara

Answer: Sara, I’m sorry that your shoulder is messed up. We both know that gym therapy is MUCH cheaper and more effective than psychotherapy which we’d require if we couldn’t go to the gym 🙂 Definitely go to the gym and train legs and core and do what you can with the upper body that is PAIN FREE. You may find that you may be able to do some pulling/pushing movements or arms. If you feel pain, stop.

Can you jump rope pain free? I know you were using these workouts on holiday. If you can, continue to do these. Any training is better than NONE and will save your sanity. Do the protocol that your PT suggests in terms of stretches, icing, whatever else suggested. I’m only telling you what I do and have done in the past. I hope this helps maintain your sanity.


challenge Jump rope grp

You can’t go wrong with my Challenge Jump Rope program.


I am SO excited for my Challenge Burpee program!

PS. I LOVE YOU CRAZIES OUT THERE: I feel like I’m in good company when I had several people tell me they couldn’t wait for the workout that put me in the fetal position:

challenge burpee after math

Stay tuned, you’re gonna LOVE Challenge Burpees!